Software and Environmental Sustainability – Practicum to Practice
Felipe Albertao (SE ’05) is living and working in China; “we're living in Shenyang, Liaoning province. My wife, Anel, is teaching English, and I came along with her.” She is an experienced high-school teacher, and took a position with Langston Language, an English School in Shenyang. Most of her students are learning English to attend American universities. “We are both learning Chinese, and we love it here! We want to stay here for the foreseeable future.” Even from China, Albertao continues to value his connections with Carnegie Mellon alumni.
Together with Tepper School alumnus, Anup Yanamandra (MBA ‘00), Albertao founded a start-up company in 2005 called Mobi53. This company provided a solution to allow users to exchange mobile text messages for personal, last-minute classifieds such as ride-sharing and event ticket sales. The two-year experience of creating and running a company became a possibility through networking at an alumni event. According to Albertao, “Carnegie Mellon alumni share a unique community that can provide for a variety of professional opportunities as well as helping us to keep abreast of the latest developments in companies and learning how others may be facing and solving similar challenges in the field.”
Albertao learned of the master’s programs at Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley from a co-worker who invited him to attend an Information Session. “After the presentation, I became very excited by the unique learn-by-doing approach. Finding a part-time degree that addressed the real-world challenges of the software industry proved to be ideal for my style of learning. The fact that the degree could be obtained through part-time enrollment was the clincher.”
For the last few years Albertao has worked for BoulevardR; a web-based service he helped to create that offers a platform for financial advisors to provide quality advice to their clients remotely.
Now Albertao will begin working on a new project with IBM Research in China, which will develop green city planning software to enable Shenyang to become a model for environmental protection, that then could be provided to other municipalities in China. Albertao offers, “I am very excited to be able to put into practice the knowledge I gained from my studies of software and environmental sustainability during my Master’s practicum at Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley, under the guidance of Professors Ed Katz, Todd Sedano and Martin Griss.”
Albertao is continuing to make connections through other Carnegie Mellon alumni; there are chapters located in several regions of China. His advice to other alumni, “do not restrict your involvement to events organized only through your own department or program. I have made numerous valuable connections and friendships by attending Carnegie Mellon alumni events in various colleges and departments. In fact, a number of features of the product offered at BoulevardR were implemented after feedback from alumni and faculty that I met at such events.”
Albertao also suggests getting involved in the on-line social networking venues such as LinkedIn; “on-line social and professional networking is an excellent way to remain connected no matter where in the world you are employed.”
Albertao tells current students, “cultivate relationships during the program as they will prove to be extremely beneficial later on in your career. Maintaining your connection with Carnegie Mellon will only strengthen your leverage in the business community. Many leaders in the software industry know the Carnegie Mellon brand and value the knowledge and skills gained by its alumni.”