Thank You to Our Three Women in Tech in New York (WiTNY) Interns

By Kat Rumbles on February 7, 2018
Our three interns, from left to right: Julia Aguiar, Tasnia Tabassum, and Ji Hye Ha

At Two Sigma Ventures, we believe inspiring young people to pursue careers in tech is one of the most important things we can do. In keeping with that belief, this winter we welcomed three CUNY students to our team through the Women in Technology in New York (WiTNY) program, a partnership between Cornell Tech and CUNY universities. The goal of the program is to encourage more women to join tech companies, and to provide them with valuable work experience to prepare them for careers in the tech industry.

Our three winterns, Julia, Ji, and Tasnia, built a marketing analytics dashboard to help our team measure our digital web traffic since the launch of our new website in October. Thanks to their hard work, the dashboard is now live in our office. It displays a stream of portfolio company news, website and social media analytics, and even our team’s top influencers, which has created some friendly competition amongst our team.

After talking to Julia, Ji, and Tasnia about their experience, we wanted to share their thoughts on getting into tech, what their experience working at Two Sigma Ventures was like, and what their plans are next.

How did you first get involved in technology?

Julia: Oddly enough, Wikipedia! I started writing articles about music groups back in 2009. To write for Wikipedia, you needed to use HTML, so that was the first programing language I learned. After that, I was hooked. I went on to learn about front-end development, CSS, and JavaScript.

Ji: When I was studying economics, I started collecting large amounts of data and turning it into usable information by using a data sorting program called Gratl. The data’s ability to explain trends and future events fascinated me.

How did you get involved with Two Sigma Ventures?

Julia: During the application process for the WiTNY program, I expressed interests in working in an environment where everyone — not only upper management — has a voice, and where team members motivate each other to feel a sense of purpose. I conveyed my passion for technology and its potential for solving problems our society faces, such as poverty, education and healthcare. These responses linked me to Two Sigma Ventures, where I became immersed in a work environment and philosophy that matched every expectation I had for a tech company.

What was your favorite part about working here?

Julia: I loved how Two Sigma Ventures has the startup feel and mentality, but is equipped with the resources of a large organization. Working in Two Sigma Ventures’ open workplace, sitting right next to some great startups in the incubator gave me an opportunity to immerse myself in the tech-work culture. Two Sigma Ventures not only provides valuable resources to their teams, but creates an environment where people can collaborate and thrive.

Tasnia: One of the best parts about working at Two Sigma Ventures was the inclusivity. Two Sigma offers three employee resource groups that help give those in different minorities a voice. ouTSigma, BE@TS, and W@TS are run by full-time Two Sigma employees who volunteer their free time to organize events and encourage communication. From attracting more LGBTQ-A talent into the tech world by offering them ways to hone their skills and develop their talents to creating a racially and ethnically diverse environment and supporting women in furthering their careers at Two Sigma, these groups are dedicated to improving inclusivity. They provide everyone with a familiar face to look up to and aspire to emulate. I personally found all three resource groups to be extremely informative and helpful.

What are your plans next?

Ji: My priority will be to graduate with an engineering degree in two years. During my upcoming breaks, I will look for opportunities to spend more time working in tech companies, so that I can narrow down my field of interest. I will try to read and meet people across different fields to learn different perspectives and gain career advice. And while plans will certainly change throughout my experiences, one thing that I am sure of is that I will keep questioning myself and never stop learning.

Julia: This spring, I will be starting my third year in college. Besides taking my regular college classes, I plan on doing some fun tech and art projects. I’ve always liked using technology in artistic ways (drawing CSS images is one of my favorite pastimes). The first thing I want to learn after the internship is how to draw SVG images. Additionally, I plan on using my digital drawing skills on projects which will display data in engaging and beautiful ways, as I’m very interested in data analysis and visual representation of data.

Tasnia: My main goal is to master HTML, JavaScript and CSS, then move on to some backend languages. I also intend to reconfigure my educational plans. I came to this internship as a finance major with an interest in technology, but I am leaving as someone who would potentially like to pursue computer science to a higher level. I intend to search for more internships at tech companies as I really enjoyed the tech company culture at Two Sigma Ventures and hope to obtain a career somewhere with a similar environment.

Thanks, Julia, Ji, and Tasnia! We can’t wait to see what you do next!

The views expressed herein are solely the views of the author(s), are as of the date they were originally posted, and are not necessarily the views of Two Sigma Ventures, LP or any of its affiliates. They are not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, investment advice.