Software Developer, UX/UI Designer, Travel Enthusiast, MacScientist.

Soyo Awosika-Olumo graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Computer Engineering. She currently works as a full-stack software engineer at Goldman Sachs. Outside of work she enjoys traveling, volunteering and co-runs a blog called MacScientists; a platform geared towards showcasing the lives of four women in STEM careers in hopes to inspire and change the face of STEM.

What does diversity mean to you?

Diversity to me is the ability to bring various thoughts and perspectives based on various life experiences to come up with the best solution that is inclusive and sustainable for the greater good. It’s the freedom for people to feel that their concerns are not only valid but are also heard without any fear.

Why do you care about diversity?

I care about diversity because being a Black Woman in Tech, I contribute to diversity. I’ve been in countless spaces where I am the only person that looks like me and have felt the discomfort and the doubt that has been associated with being in those spaces. Although I’ve worked to push past my own fears and doubts, not everyone can without that extra motivation of seeing more people that look like them which is why I think diversity matters.

How can we build more inclusive communities?

Inclusion has to be encouraged from those who have the most privilege. It’s not just diverse people into a particular space but also retaining those people in that space. To retain those people, people need to feel like they’re actually being heard and not just being listened to. One can’t know everything especially things beyond their perspective which is why one should count on others to provide you that perspective. Knowing when to play a major or a minor role within a given space or exchange can help drive different conversations and create a more inclusive space.

Who is your role model?

As cliche as it is, I’d have to say my mom. She’s an incredible woman.

What is your advice to a young person starting their career or entrepreneurial journey?

Take ownership of what you want. You have to be your biggest champion of your career because no one else will be able to champion for you better than you can. Your first job may not be everything you would’ve hoped for, but it doesn’t have to be. Let your job be one piece of making you feel fulfilled and one step to building your brand and your platform.