#ThrowbackThursday: Gabriela Stefanini

Selfie taken at the 4 July reception at the US embassy in Bern: from left Olivia, Gabriela and Evelyn

“Olivia, Evelyn and I were the project team for connectUS and during that time we met the then US ambassador to Switzerland.  He was kind and helpful and sent us a letter with an invitation to the Independence Day party at the US embassy in Bern.  I was so nervous. I didn’t know what to wear to such an event, didn’t know who would be there, how we had to behave, whether we should bring something along. It was a huge event with several hundred people, none of whom we knew, mostly seemingly important and affluent.  What still makes me laugh is that I had bought a flower for my hair at H&M- if you look carefully you can see it on the photo – and at some stage a guest came and talked to us and said “Oh, how lovely. Is that a Chanel flower?”

Gabriela delivering a talk at a technical conference last year. (Photo: Leandro Godoy)

Graduated in 2012

Now  “I’m  in the Get Shit Done team – yes, really, that’s its name. I’m a software developer at Shopify, mostly working on internal tools and applications, with the aim of increasing company productivity.  Our company is moving really fast globally – we now have over 2000 employees and are expanding, well almost doubling in size each year.  So it’s very dynamic and exciting.  What I love is that we’re all given a great deal of freedom and independence to be creative and come up with our own ideas for new features and solutions. We work hard, but I really enjoy it. “

After graduation   Gabi first stayed on at the School of Business as an administrator in the International Office.  Here she also developed and launched some new tools and processes which increased her interest in software engineering and coding.  In 2014 she moved to Canada, initially to start a degree in Computer Science at the prestigious McGill University (which she has nearly finished) in Montreal.  She landed an internship with the dynamic Shopify (a cloud-based commerce platform) as software developer where she worked on product tools such as  SSL encryption, domains and upgrading the framework.  She was then hired permanently a year ago which involved a move to Ottawa.

How did studying IM help?  Even now, I profit regularly from having such a solid knowledge of business processes and tools. Next to the software backgrounds,  I have knowledge and insight into Marketing, Finance, PR and this knowledge is useful all the time.  For instance, because I have knowledge and a good awareness of Comms, I have perspectives that are genuinely useful.

Want to get in touch with Gabi?  You’ll find her on our closed IM Alumni group (sub-group of FHNW Alumni) on LinkedIn or on Twitter at twitter.com/lastgabs

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