The Women Of AngelHack: Grace Howland
Project WoAH (Women of AngelHack). It’s a movement. One led by the amazing Women of AngelHack, who have stories to share. And share we will! Check out the intro below, and tune in LIVE on December 17th (5pm PST) to check out and ask questions during our WoAH Livestream.
Name: Grace Howland
Role: Operations Assistant
Been With AngelHack: July 2015
Works Out Of: Dallas, TX
What do you do at AngelHack?
At AngelHack, I help with a lot of the operations for our global hackathons. These tasks include finding venues for hackathons, contacting judges, and coordinating catering for events.
Can you tell us about your toughest day on the job?
I would say the hardest day was when I had a test in one of my courses the next day, and had to balance work and school. But again, that wasn’t too difficult and it was definitely manageable.
AngelHack is a global company, requiring frequent travel. You must have had some memorable experiences. Give us one!
My most memorable experience from traveling with AngelHack was going to Hong Kong for a hackathon. It was so cool to experience such a different culture through work. The place we stayed was about a 20 minute walk from the venue, so I got to see a lot of Hong Kong going to and from the hackathon. Though the most memorable thing was definitely the shrimp wontons!
Has there ever been a time you felt discriminated against as a woman? Explain.
High school was the time I felt most discriminated against as a woman. It happened commonly in the classroom, when politics were brought up, and most often when involving sports. There were many times small sexist remarks were made either to me, a female friend, or girls in a group. Although they were often meant to be jokes, they were still discriminating comments because I am a woman. These were usually made by boys, but girls would participate in the discrimination too by laughing at a "joke" or even saying one themselves. Now, being a college student, it is a lot less noticeable because the issue is taken more seriously. Unfortunately though, the discrimination still exists, even if it is to a lesser degree.
What challenges have you faced because of being a female at a hackathon or in business?
AngelHack has been my first experience in the hackathon world. Although I have only worked in this field for a little while, I have not noticed any challenges as a woman. In fact, AngelHack has made me feel very comfortable being a woman in a male-dominant profession. Every time I have worked with, traveled with, or been at an event with male co-workers, participants, or judges, I have never felt discriminated against for my sex. I am always included equally and am given equal responsibility when it comes to hackathons.
What about the startup culture do you like?
I like the startup company culture because you get to meet so many interesting and different kinds of people. I also like working in a small company because even though I have only worked at AngelHack for a little while, I feel like I will have the opportunity to get to know my coworkers a lot better than I would at a bigger company.
What about the startup culture do you dislike?
The only thing I can think of that’s a downside of this startup culture is that I don’t get to work with my coworkers in person.
How does it feel that 80% of your community is male based?
Knowing that 80% of my client base/ community is male makes me feel powerful. It makes me believe that I can show other women that this a great field to work in, and it does not need to be dominated by men.
Right now, I am currently a sophomore at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. I am originally from Seattle, WA, and live there when I am not attending school. I am part of the sorority Pi Beta Phi on campus, and I also play for the Women's Lacrosse team. I am part of SMU's entrepreneurship club, and I enjoy spending time at the gym or hanging out with my friends. One of my favorite things is trying all the new and interesting food in Dallas!
What do you love about working for AngelHack?
I love working at AngelHack because my coworkers are fun and easy to work with, which makes work much more enjoyable. I also love working at AngelHack because I am currently in college pursuing a degree in Finance with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship, so it is amazing being able to get experience in the field I am studying!
What’s your spirit animal?
A dolphin. They are my favorite type of animal, and I love the ocean as well as the color blue!
What’s one word you would use to describe yourself?
What’s your favorite thing in the world?
My most favorite thing in the world is going to Disneyland with my family.
My biggest fear is never seeing one of my family members again.
What’s your definition of success?
My definition of success is feeling accomplished. If I set a goal for myself and complete it, even one as small as finishing a workout at the gym, I feel successful. It is also important that I continue to challenge myself and make my goals harder. The harder the task I set for myself, the more successful I feel after I complete it!
The stage is set, December 17th at 5PM PST. Submit your questions ahead of time using #ProjectWoAH or through the YouTube LIVE chat on December 17th. Mark your calendars, and make sure you tune into the livestream!
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