#3 - Sunita, Crypto, & More
$ENVISION soon? We have a ton of opportunities for founders and links to insightful articles the team has read in the past week!
Welcome to the third edition of the Envision Newsletter! This week, I caught up with Sunita and talked about all things career, crypto, and community. It’s been a pleasure working with her at Envision for the past few months and found her thoughts on career switches super valuable!
🗞 Story of the Week
Joel’s questions are in Bold, Sunita’s answers underneath!
Your background is very unique, can you take us from lil Sunita to how you got to your current position in the startup world?
I was born and raised in the suburbs of Seattle. I loved it, it was a really great experience. And then I ended up going out of state to UT Austin to get a new experience. It was an incredible four years and I studied, at the intersection of global health and public policy. During undergrad, I interned at the United Nations Foundation. I worked there full-time post-grad as well, working on the Girl Up Initiative, which is a global gender equity programming that targets high school and college-aged students to raise awareness and advocate for global gender equity programming. I also spent some time building out the UN's STEM for social good programming, which was a way to encourage young women to start ventures with a social impact lens. Through that experience, I was really interested in the startup realm and world. After the UN, I went to Rent the Runway to build out their sustainability programming. I joined their business operations and strategy team and I was there for a bit and it was a really incredible experience.
Working at a company that was founded by two incredible women made me realize the stats were pretty dismal for women raising capital for their companies. This sparked the interest that led me to join the Envision Accelerator team, which is an incredible team that I'm just really lucky to be part of. I joined as Head of Community and transitioned into Head of Platform, which really is both the community experience, but also understanding how are we pulling together our partners and allies into the fold and into our programming.
I also work full-time at Republic, working on their tokenization and crypto team. I've been really inspired by the Republic team for a while now and their mission to democratize access to investing and funding. It’s been a great learning experience so far and I really loved the community around crypto.
Definitely, a non-linear career path that we love to see! How has the jump into the crypto world been? For a newbie like myself, it feels like I’m in over my head a lot with these concepts.
100%! Especially now, I think a lot of people have a passive interest in the crypto space. A lot of my friends have been interested in its use, so I've always had a passing interest in crypto. I think what really drew me to it is impact, I can be at the forefront of a rising industry. Blockchain technology is utilized within so many different industries. Investing within the crypto space helps to really build wealth for folks that didn't have access to that before. There are so many new things happening!
I also figured since Bitcoin started in the late 2000s, it's not such a new concept that new folks can't get into the industry. What I've really appreciated about Republic, and generally my sentiment within the crypto community, is people are very open to people who don't have a lot of technical experience within it. I think all of us are constantly learning. Things are definitely changing and evolving, even on a daily basis, within decentralized finance and I think I've been really lucky to join a team that's so supportive of learning through this journey.
One of my key roles is really building out the crypto community within Republic. Being able to level-set and being someone who is coming into this role with limited experience, I hope it makes the jump less intimidating for others considering the same.
I've taken big jumps in my career so far, so I'm excited to continue that trend!
Do you have any words of advice for people who are also wanting to make a huge jump in their careers?
What I realized early on is you have to be true to what you care about and what you get excited about. Some of my friends work in spaces I'm not interested in but they're also not interested in the things that I'm into.
I’m relatively new to the tech ecosystem, but what I've found is there's this comparison aspect that is something I'm not interested in being a part of. People need to be cognizant of what they're good at and what excites them every day because you can't compare your timeline and your path to other people.
A common theme in all of my roles is this aspect of operation, strategy, and community. Honing in on the skills that you're good at and honing in on what you care about, is super important. It’s what has led me to each opportunity. Tactically, focus on transferable skills and that will take you a long way.
This isn't maybe the most useful advice, but it's always about trusting the process. I used to hate when people said that, but I am 100% a believer in receiving the energy you put out into the world.
📣 What’s Happening at Envision?
Cohort 3 is well underway with some exciting companies! If you are an investor interested in getting matched with portfolio companies that align with your stage, thesis, or industry, fill out this interest form and we'll get back to you!
Thank you to everyone who attended our Envision x OnDeck collab event! We have many more exciting collab events coming soon, stay tuned for updates on our Twitter!
🎯 Resources and Opportunities
Give Jade a follow on Twitter, so many amazing resources she links on her feed!
Visible Hands is launching their inaugural cohort: Enabling diverse & talented individuals to launch their technology startups. The priority Deadline is April 16th!
Dell Women’s Entrepreneur Network (DWEN) Dream Tech Contest is offering $60k to the winning member! Apply to become a member and participate.
Cash Drop has a $15k Latina entrepreneurship grant! Apply by April 30th!
Job openings from our community!
Cohort 2 founder, Timi, is hiring a part-time community manager for Kinfolq! Reach out to him on Twitter.
NextView Ventures is looking to add a new member to their investment team.
Pipe is hiring for a variety of roles!
Volley is hiring a Chief of Staff!
📚 What We’re Reading
Our Tik Tok game is about to take off, so we had to learn from Li Jin how startups have used Tik Tok to grow.
Diverse leadership teams tend to outperform, can someone let tech founders know about this?