As a junior at Duke University, GSSM has never been far from Anya Bali’s mind.
First introduced to GSSM through the Summer Science Program, now known as GoSciTech, Bali spent a few summers taking Chemistry and Digital Forensic Analysis camps. She thought she wanted to be a chemical engineer.
When she began the residential program, however, Bali discovered that even though GSSM is STEM-focused, she could also pursue classes and topics that went beyond typical engineering.
“I’ve always thought about entrepreneurship because of GSSM,” said Bali. “I had a class called Technology Ventures.”
Technology Ventures, an annual course offering, introduces the fundamentals of entrepreneurship while focusing on technology startups. The class reviews methods to identify potential technology-intensive commercial opportunities, gather resources and measure and manage rapid growth and risk.
During her January Interim, the three weeks before her second semester, Bali had the chance to visit several start-up firms and famous global technology companies in Silicon Valley.
“At my old high school, there’s no way I could have gone to Silicon Valley for a week or taken classes from a Harvard MBA who was teaching us from Harvard curriculum,” she said. “There was always an encouraging atmosphere at GSSM and willingness to try new things.”
Now, as a psychology major and computer science minor at Duke, Bali is also pursuing her certification in innovation and entrepreneurship.
She is interning with RocketBolt, a software startup company that helps optimize sales leads for their clients. The opportunity to learn more about customer acquisition has allowed her to explore the business side of technology.
“I’ve always been interdisciplinary,” said Bali. “I get to combine all of these different things to make my path.”
Bali plans to head to Madrid, Spain, where she is studying abroad for the fall semester. But, eventually, Bali thinks her own startup might be in the cards. She has a strong passion for gender equality in the workplace and hopes to one day integrate that into her own company.
Her advice for GSSM students?
“You get out what you put in, so the more open you are to opportunities, the more that will come your way!"