To whom it may concern:
I consider myself a curious and empathetic product builder with strong communication skills. My passion is to build and launch products people need to solve a problem.
My career path is not a traditional one. I have an undergrad Industrial Engineering degree and 3 years of experience as an engineer at Verizon Communications. I was chosen to be part of the very first company-wide Verizon Engineering Leadership Development Program. All of my roles at Verizon involved working directly with small to large B2B customers along with vendor management. I left the company due to family concerns. I used that time to learn how to pursue consumer-driven projects by teaching myself how to make Android apps using Java. After this, I completed my full-time MBA degree at the University of Iowa where I honed my marketing and analytics skill with the goal of creating my own products.
After an educational trip to Vietnam as part of my MBA program, I was intrigued by the rapid economic development and spirit of international entrepreneurship I witnessed in Ho Chi Minh City. I moved to Vietnam temporarily to immerse myself in a new culture and community filled with fellow product development enthusiasts before dedicating my attention to a full-time role. There I networked with entrepreneurs, developers, and product managers while pursuing my own self-studies in building consumer applications. One of my primary focuses was developing and deploying Delightful, a phone app designed to promote gratitude and good mental health. Building Delightful allowed me the exposure and ability to talk with users around the world. The app has been translated into five languages, increasing its global reach. I also allowed myself to experiment with many other products such as a Facebook chatbot and an Android app utilizing Firebase Firestore.
I went back to the US after a year in Vietnam and worked as an Android developer for the Edtech company Edmodo in San Mateo, CA. As a self-taught developer this was a huge accomplishment that afforded me the opportunity to collaborate with engineers, designers, and product managers to build and improve a fully scaled product. I was in charge of release management for the two Edmodo Android apps with millions of users.
I returned to Vietnam in 2019 for personal reasons and used the time to further explore new and existing projects. After initial customer discovery, a friend and I started work on a new fintech app for tracking savings goals called Relish Money. Before finishing our minimum viable product, we identified an untapped local opportunity in Vietnam and pivoted our focus to helping Vietnamese developers find jobs and collaborate more with each other. I taught myself ReactJS and NodeJS along with DevOps work to launch the alpha MVP of Vina.Dev. Unfortunately, we ceased further development due to Covid-19 related setbacks. But from this experience, I gained deep insight into the Vietnamese market and how to think about global growth opportunities. I went on to create an open-source project Tech.Viet.io to highlight tech companies in Vietnam.
My goal is to be part of a team that appreciates my curiosity and diverse career path and allows me to bring my full self to whatever projects I take on within the company.
I look forward to hearing from you!
René I. DeAnda