Teddy Chen, CS Major

Teddy Chen

Why is it important to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month?

It’s important to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month to appreciate the culture that AAPI people bring. Gaining an understanding of each other helps us to be a better community as a whole. I feel like sometimes we get stuck in our bubbles, whether it’s your friend group or otherwise, that keeps us from different perspectives.

How do you define successful leadership?

A successful leader solves the challenges that lie ahead of the team, while raising up the members to be leaders themselves. It’s important that the progress of the team doesn’t rely on the leader; the leader should be able to delegate tasks while imparting the main vision, so that members are autonomous yet work towards the common goal.

What are the biggest challenges to successful leadership?

From personal experience, a big challenge is resisting the urge to micromanage the vision. I might have some preconceptions about what the specifics of the end goal should look like, and I try to push them onto the members and stifle their creative solutions. I think this stems from arrogance and too large a sense of responsibility.

Why did you choose to earn a degree in computer science?

I love it. When I first discovered it in high school, it shone above all the other subjects for me. It sounds cheesy, but I felt a passion for it. Nowadays that initial feeling is mostly gone, but I feel that programming is something that I see myself enjoying every day.

What is something about your time at Georgia Tech/College of Computing that you will carry with you, or that still informs your professional life?

I hope I’ll carry with me the connections I’ve made!

Beyond money, awards, and job titles, what’s the biggest measure of success?

The first half of Ecclesiastes 2:24 (NLT) says it best: “So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work[…]”. The second half talks about the importance of God in that equation.

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced in your career?

My first internship was at a startup, which meant they operated at a hectic pace. As a first-time intern, I expected a lot more attention and feedback on my work than I got. From talking it over with my boss, the problem was that I was too reticent: I would complacently tap away at my keyboard and not speak out. I remedied that at my next internship and set up weekly meetings with my mentor and my manager.

What’s the next big thing you’d like to accomplish?

After graduating I’d like to get a job doing something in the mixed reality space. I feel like there’s a lot of potential there, and I want to be a part of making something cool that’ll help people.