Olivia Goldstein (’14) recently launched a new company, RepHike, which is a community of technologists and innovators solving challenges faced by startups and companies.
The mission of the company is to connect university students and companies to collaborate on particular projects, allowing companies to tap the knowledge and skills of the students. Meanwhile, students gain real world experience in the professional world. “Students from varying disciplines learn from each other and the companies, thus better equipping them for the work force and ultimately pursuing a career they love,” said Olivia.
Olivia’s founding team hails from India and Russia, and collectively, they have diverse skills in engineering, management, marketing, growth, and operations. The company’s clients vary from tech, media, and finance, and they all share the goal of building their brand and product among millennials.
The idea for RepHike came from challenges the team witnessed in universities. Olivia noted: “In India, over 1.5 million students graduate every year with engineering degrees. However, over 90% of these engineering graduates are unemployable due to lack of suitable skills. In all likelihood, most of these students simply studied engineering because of pressure they faced from their families. RepHike exposes students to different disciplines so that they can build their skills.”
RepHike encourages student participants to work on projects outside their own field of study: “We encourage our computer science students to participate in our design challenges, our marketing students to participate in product development challenges, and so forth. In this way, students can dabble in different careers and be better prepared for leadership positions, which will require them to collaborate across departments.”
In addition to helping students build skills, RepHike works to build students’ confidence and help them communicate about their skills and achievements to prospective employers. RepHike has a weekly series, “Designers, Builders, and Leaders,” in which students share about their professional achievements. Ultimately, this series, says Olivia, “will build a dialogue on student activities and help inspire other students to pursue projects and careers that excite them.”
In the long-term, RepHike aims to become a leader in the recruitment space for hiring the best employees. Its vision is to bridge relationships between companies and job seekers, particularly students and recent graduates, by providing unique challenges to demonstrate potential new hires’ problem solving abilities, creativity, and/or technical skills.
“The best lesson I’ve learned is how to take your skills and apply it to what you are truly passionate about,” said Olivia. “Even my closest friends from IWP pursued careers in impact investing and non-profits. Students can explore many different careers — which is exactly what we are promoting at RepHike.”
Learn more: http://rephike.com
Top: Olivia Goldstein.
Middle: Konstantin Skobeltsyn, CTO of RepHike, with Olivia Goldstein.
Bottom: Dean of Mangalore Institute of Technology & Engineering; Olivia Goldstein; and Shashank Roy, CEO of RepHike during a lighting of the lamps ceremony at MITE. This ceremony, which signifies enlightenment of knowledge, was performed before Olivia and Shashank spoke to 350 students at MITE.