"The resume is only one piece of who I truly am."
Praveen Joseph '20 | Arts Entrepreneurship
Major | IDEAS: Civil Engineering + Sustainable Development
Minor | Entrepreneurship
Hometown | Bergenfield, NJ
LehighSiliconValley has helped me realize how to maximize my strengths to create valuable assets. This past Saturday, we had a professional development workshop that focused on our “unresume.” An “unresume” is the story of you that can not be explained on a piece of paper. My resume lists my accomplishments, but fails to explain my dreams. As a civil engineer, it is important for me to showcase my various internships and projects to prove I have the experience to be a valuable contributor. But it is also important for me to show that I am so much more than just an engineer. My area of interest is the intersection of economic development, environmental sustainability, and social inclusion. While technical knowledge is invaluable, the social orientation of the projects you lead are just as vital.
I co-founded a non-profit called “The Arenam Project” recently. It is a water resource program with a microfinance business model approach. Water scarcity is an issue that affects close to 40 percent of the world. The project’s goal is to increase agricultural productivity of small holding Kenyan farmers of Embu County by substantially increasing water use efficiency and decreasing the percentage of people suffering from water scarcity. We also want to create stable jobs that would secure the farmers year round. I have always had the mindset that if you had the ability to impact someone’s life in a meaningful positive way… why wouldn’t you? This project has made me realize that I desire to be on teams that develop underprivileged areas to give people the opportunity to climb the socio-economic ladder, which comes from my experience growing up. My parents sacrificed a lot to allow me to have the opportunities that I have such as attending LehighSiliconValley and it is my goal to create these same opportunities for others. My resume shows what this project does, but my unresume explains why it is important to me. LehighSiliconValley has showed me that the resume is only one piece of who I truly am. My empathy as an engineer is an asset that I will always cherish.