Since the internet doesn’t have much information about my personal life outside of my LinkedIn profile, here’s a brief overview. I grew up in China, and came to the United States in 2011 when I was 21, to pursue a master ‘s degree in Mechanical Engineering. After graduation in 2013, I taught myself Computer Science on Coursera, and spent the next decade of my career in software engineering.
I survived a work place sexual harassment in 2015, and still got terminated for speaking up. My manager at the time told me that Silicon Valley is a very small place. The startup later got acquired for 6 billion dollars, and I missed the opportunity because of the harassment. I then survived pre-IPO Uber and exited Uber on the week my friend Susan Fowler Rigetti published her famous blogspot Reflecting On One Very, Very Strange Year At Uber. I was fired by Uber on February 14th, 2017, I told her about my story on February 16th, and she published her blog post on February 19, 2017. I’m not the only reason that motivated her to take that big risk, but my termination is one of the many factors. For that I will always love you, Susan.
I came to the United States on my own. During my 20s, my family kept dying from illnesses in China. And I lost my last living family member, my grandma, in November, 2022. I was relying heavily on drugs to cope during those weeks, and got sexually assaulted by a friend because of my vulnerability. My boyfriend Andrey Kurenkov, who’s a Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University computer science department, insisted on breaking up with me the week after my grandma’s passing while I was still trying to figure out the sexual assault, with the reason being “I can’t be the only important person in your life”.