Tommy Pan Fang (M&T’15) Audacese in New York, NY

THE 2012-2013 AMBASSADOR OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Wharton Entrepreneurship Advisory Board Intern Fellow

I found out about my summer internship through unconventional means. After running into a high school classmate at Wharton, I learned about a company that she co-founded with several other Penn alumni. Another conversation over lunch about Audacese, an early-stage educational software start-up that focused on iPad applications, had me hooked about the company and its philosophy. When I learned about an opportunity at Audacese, I immediately applied and signed on, because I knew I would have a chance to learn from experienced engineers and be directly involved in the value creation process.

 

In preparation for my internship with Audacese, I spent a semester learning Objective-C programming by taking an independent study course under my computer science advisor, Professor Max Mintz. During my course, I worked and created my first iPad application for Audacese, Globetrotters, which taught children about basic math and spelling in a trek around the world. Working for Audacese during the school year with the team convinced me that working for Audacese was what I wanted to do over the summer. Thanks to the two grants I won – the Wharton Entrepreneurial Intern Fellowship and the M&T Intern Fellowship – I was able to take on the opportunity.

 

At Audacese I worked closely with senior software engineers to create a number of interactive stories for pre-kindergarten children. I was individually put in charge of my own project, which involved creating an interactive story about Noah’s Ark. I also worked on the content of the storybooks by helping to edit the story and using Photoshop and Illustrator to modify the images used in the storybook. Over the summer, my role on the team changed and expanded as the Audacese product line increased. I began working on a number of non-engineering related projects at Audacese which taught me about increasing brand awareness and marketing strategies. This included being a featured editor for the Audacese Blog and increasing Audacese’s social media presence. During my time at the start-up, getting involved in the process of creating a product from beginning to start was the most valuable part of the experience for me. Being in a space with so many passionate people also taught me about how working at a start-up can be personally rewarding and gratifying. Overall, my experience as an intern was extremely positive and I look forward to pursuing my own ventures in the future.

 

To future Fellows, I would advise that you make the most of your summer by pursuing something that you are interested in. When taking up an internship at a start-up, you will most likely find yourself working at an incubator or a city with a strong start-up culture. There are a lot of creative ideas at work, so sign up for and attend as many entrepreneurial events as you can fit.

 

I would like to thank the Wharton Entrepreneurial Intern Fellowship once again for allowing me to have an amazing summer experience.