Sierra Lee is a Campus Associate attending the University of Washington. She will graduate in 2024 with her undergraduate degree in computer science. Her love for startups began after she completed software development internships with two early-stage startups the summer before her freshman year of college: one for a “blind dating” app startup and one for a home management app startup. She most enjoyed getting to wear many hats during these internships – not only was she developing the software to power the products behind these startups, she would also occasionally act as a designer and review the pitch decks her teams would make for angel investors.
Since entering college, she has continued to explore tech entrepreneurship by co-founding the University of Washington’s first student-run startup incubator: DubHacks Next. Through DubHacks Next, she has worked with various early-stage UW startups, connecting them with valuable resources, providing ad-hoc advising, and helping them pitch to Seattle incubators. Her motivation to help create DubHacks Next came from a desire to jumpstart the Seattle startup ecosystem after observing a general lack of interest in startups at the UW.
Sierra has always enjoyed giving back to her community. In high school, she worked with her city council to lead a mental health initiative and also worked on committees to highlight local art and help her city’s Special Olympics chapter. She also started her city’s local chapter of Cyber Seniors – a program connecting senior citizens with high school students through technology. She is now currently involved with Generation She, a nonprofit organization encouraging young women into entrepreneurship, and serves on the UW Computer Science Department’s Student Advisory Council, primarily working to increase research accessibility at her university.
Technically, Sierra has a strong background in machine learning, after completing an internship with Microsoft’s AI Platform team during her junior year of high school, doing some machine learning work for a startup, and continuing to do independent research on the intersection between machine learning and art generation specifically. She has more recently begun exploring full stack development and cloud networking, which perfectly align with her most recent internship with VMware’s VeloCloud Orchestrator team.
For fun, Sierra enjoys learning about other cultures, from trying traditional foods to learning new languages to traveling the world. She is also a huge boba fanatic and enjoys reading and writing poetry.