Howdy, y’all, I am originally from Houston, Texas and am pursuing a PhD in biomedical engineering focusing on biophotonics (how light can be used for the diagnosis and treatment of disease). In particular, my research focuses on surgical guidance systems that can be brought to market by startups. This interest in entrepreneurship originates from spending four years in the backroom of my dad’s office while my parents tried to get their business off the ground. This interest developed overtime and led to me competing in several pitch competitions while an undergraduate at Louisiana Tech. After coming to Vanderbilt, I jumped at the chance to participate in the Social Enterprise Pitch Competition – my first experience with the TFC.
As someone who has been a Department of Child Services mentor and tutor, I have seen the impact volunteers can have on the disenfranchised. However, the fact that businesses can strive to help these groups and still succeed as a business was a novel idea that has sucked me in. Now, I attend as many TFC events as I can be they immersions, lunch and learns, or classes.