EPICentre is thrilled to welcome a brand new cohort of EPIC VentureWomen. Each week, we’ll be featuring a different founder or team in a series we like to call 10-for-10. This week, Meet Mylene Tu, founder of Lumaki Labs.
As a self-proclaimed introvert, Mylene Tu never expected to dive into the world of entrepreneurship but with an immense desire to want to make a positive impact in the world, she is now working on her second venture while completing the EPIC VentureWomen program.
“I accidentally fell into entrepreneurship in my first year of engineering when, in 2018, I started my first venture as a way to bridge the gender gap in STEM” said Mylene “From there I realized that I had a lot of misconceptions in my mind of being too young or too inexperienced to do something. I started and ran that venture for about a year and a half until I moved on to my current venture.”
Together with her business partner Fatimah Areola, Mylene has launched Lumaki Labs, an EdTech startup on a mission to revolutionize the future of work through virtual internships. “we saw the impacts of COVID-19 on experiential learning and saw this as an opportunity to help normalize virtual internships as a way to strengthen future talent-pipelines and open more doors for students even after the pandemic” said Mylene.
Mylene is currently in her third year of Management Engineering at the University of Waterloo, but was born and raised in Windsor and hopes to make an impact in her hometown by becoming a role model for younger women looking to get into tech and entrepreneurship. “I feel like often when we are in school, we see role models who are much older than us and therefore get the thought in our minds that we must be older too to make an impact. I want to show others that it’s never too early or too late to start” said Mylene.
Starting two ventures while still in school is no easy feat but Mylene credits her drive, ambition, and confidence to her mentor and role model Heather Gamble, CEO of Women on the Move. After missing a workshop hosted by Heather, Mylene reached out to the company asking for a recap. Little did she know that Heather would not only respond to her email but also invite her to a one-on-one call to fill her in on what she missed. “In that first call I gravitated towards the energy she had and we had actually found out that not long ago we had been at the same place, at the same time, winning the same award (the Empowerment Award by BPW/CCEW)” said Mylene. From that point, Mylene began to visit Heather almost every week for mentorship and career advice. “She was the person who pushed me to believe in myself more than I could have known and she was the one to point me in the direction of social entrepreneurship. Although we don’t chat as often now, she will always be a role model and inspiration to me and for that, I couldn’t be more thankful!” said Mylene.
Through all her hard work, Mylene still finds time to indulge in some of her favourite activities. As a former varsity track athlete for the University of Waterloo, Mylene loves to run and explore new places. In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering her time to mentor other young women and aspiring entrepreneurs. While practicing safety precautions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Mylene also picked up a new hobby – watercolour painting!
As a member of the EPIC VentureWomen program, Mylene along with the rest of the cohort will receive mentorship, access to workshops, industry connections, and tools and resources specific to each startup’s needs. “By the end of this program, I hope to see Lumaki Labs launched & set up operationally for success. I hope to continually learn more about different aspects of entrepreneurship from people management to product management and everything in between. I also hope to build ties with others in the community, I am eager and excited to engage and grow with the other amazing women in this program!” said Mylene.
Lumaki Labs hopes to launch its MVP in late October for the onboarding side of its platform. If you’d like to stay up to date on their progress, click here to subscribe to their website.
- If you are a student who is interested in sharing your experience with internships, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- If you are an employer interested in learning more about the platform or would like to share your experience with virtual onboarding, please contact: email@example.com
- To read more about the future of work and how traditional internships are changing forever check out our blog post: https://medium.com/atypical-internships/traditional-internships-are-changing-forever-3f7609ee3e8c
Social Media Handles
Find us on ProductHunt: https://www.producthunt.com/upcoming/lumaki-labs
Lumaki Labs on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/lumakilabs/
Instagram & Twitter: @lumakilabs