Duolingo founder on his Guatemala roots and recipe for fulfillment

The Guatemala-born founding father of Duolingo, one of many largest language schooling corporations on the earth, hopes his enterprise might help extra Latinos see themselves in tech and create a extra inclusive trade.

Why it issues: Luis Von Ahn is one among few Latinos on the highest ranges of a significant U.S.-based company.

  • Latinos make up round a fourth of the full U.S. workforce, however solely 8% of staff in STEM fields.

What they’re saying: “It’s not nearly seeing extra variety in C-level positions, it’s about illustration in any respect ranges,” Von Ahn tells Axios Latino by way of electronic mail. He added that Duolingo has labored laborious to construct an inclusive tradition and that a few of its most senior leaders are Hispanic.

  • His firm, which lately celebrated its tenth anniversary, has additionally had a close to 50-50 gender ratio in engineering hires previously few years.
  • “I hope this type of illustration helps youthful folks think about a future for themselves within the tech trade,” Von Ahn provides.

Von Ahn credit a part of his success to his mom enrolling him in non-public faculty and English courses.

  • He says that motivated him to construct Duolingo, “so cash won’t ever be a barrier” as a result of “instructing languages without spending a dime has the ability to alter folks’s lives.”
  • “I’ll always remember the place I’m from and I’m proud to have the ability to give again to Guatemalan society now,” Von Ahn says.

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