Schools

Post image for Menlo College grad quits Bay Area start up and discovers make up can be fun

Editor’s note: The author of this post, Tiare Fuentes, attended Menlo College where she played soccer, as well as worked for the athletic department. After a successful stint at a Bay Area start-up (a position she got due to a Menlo College social mixer) she started her own company. She just started a Kickstarter campaign to raise money 

I’m on a plane drinking champagne in those plastic airline cups as a toast to new beginnings. I take this time to enjoy the work I have accomplished so far and to reflect on the decisions that have brought me to this moment.

For the past four years I had been working for a startup pay-per-click (PPC) agency in the Silicon Valley – the epicenter of innovation. I was first hired as an intern when attending Menlo College and offered a full-time position upon graduation. I would eventually become the Digital Marketing Manager, overseeing the entire SEO division and later, made Partner.

This agency had become my life. I was devoted to making the business grow and be successful. In the time that I was there, I felt that I had done just that – made a positive impact. It was a secure role, I had benefits, I worked with great people, and I was even getting paid enough to live in the Bay Area, and eat too!

Then I quit.

Despite these excellent conditions I was becoming increasingly unhappy with my role. The nature of a startup is such that things would change rapidly, and you needed to adapt to keep up with clients’ needs or learn to deal with a change in direction as a company.

Adapting to new situations was something that I enjoyed and even thrived on, but at a point, it lost its allure. When an outside company expressed interest in buying the SEO division, I decided to quit with no real backup.

My lease for my housing had also just ended. So I had no job, no home (in a sense), and no idea of what to do next. You’re probably thinking: “yeah, sounds like the typical millennial,” or “you’re making a mistake, and you’re going to regret that decision for the next 20 years.”

It was a couple of weeks after I made my decision that I received a phone call from my cousin Lynda Correa Peralta, the founder of Pocket Palette. She had heard that I quit my job and it was right around the time that she decided to go into business for herself with Pocket Palette, a single-use, full-face makeup kit.

She had seen a lot of success pitching her business plan in business competitions with her graduate school, George Washington University, some even hosted by Google. She won awards and cash prizes, and even received offers from investors, giving her more than enough motivation to turn Pocket Palette into a reality.

That’s when I flew to D.C.

I went to D.C. because that’s what you do when presented with an opportunity. You go. When I arrived, I was overwhelmed with excitement and eagerness for the following three reasons: it meant that I had a job, I was in our country’s capital, and I was getting the chance to help build something from the ground up. Lynda wanted to bring me on as a Partner, leveraging my experience in Marketing to help build Pocket Palette’s brand and following.

So, there I was, in D.C. I marveled at all the brick buildings and monuments rich with history. It’s a place that makes you nostalgic for a patriotic past that somehow makes you proud, despite the mistakes that were made along the way, because it reminds you of the people who dared to make a difference.

I was fully committed to Pocket Palette since the moment I got that phone call and being in D.C. just made the situation all-the-more real for me. Lynda’s enthusiasm for her product was energizing; it was something new and exciting.

But, if I am honest, before Lynda wanted to bring me on I didn’t use makeup and wasn’t all that interested in it. I used to think that if I paid too much attention to makeup, my peers wouldn’t take me seriously. I forfeited the fresh face for my other priorities. So now that I was a part of a cosmetics company, I wanted and needed that to change.

That’s when I got into makeup.

I used makeup almost every day when working to start the business in D.C. It made me feel refreshed and more lively. It even became fun. So, I admit that I was wrong about my negative perception of makeup. It didn’t take long to recognize that the use of makeup does not equate to your worth (insert clapping hands emoji!).

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Mac Harman may well be the man behind your artificial Christmas tree

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We met Mac Harman, founder and owner of Balsam Brands, at Woodland School in Ladera where he is on the Board of Trustees. Sprinkled around the private preschool through 8th grade campus were signs about creating a joyful world. “That happens to be one of our company’s values — spreading joy,” he said with a smile. […]

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Menlo-Atherton High School senior Cameron Bozdog achieves top ACT score

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Cameron Bozdog, a senior at Menlo-Atherton High School, earned the highest possible ACT composite score of 36. On average, less than one-tenth of 1 percent of students who take the ACT earn a top score. In the U.S. high graduating class of 2016, only 2,235 out of nearly 2.1 million graduates who take the ACT […]

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Spotted: Encinal students taking part in Harvest Festival

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Last Thursday, 4th and 5th grade students at Encinal Elementary school participated in their annual Harvest Festival. They rotated through four stations where they learned about life in colonial America, churning butter, coring apples and sampling Johnny cakes and squash soup. At the garden station, they learned about the symbiotic relationship between the “three sisters” […]

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M-A cancels all outdoor athletic events including Friday’s football game

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InMenlo received this email from M-A co-athletic director Steven Kryger: “Our district, school, and athletic administrators have been monitoring the communications from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District the past few days in response to the local air quality being effected by the wildfires in the North Bay. “In the best interest of the […]

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New scholarship fund established in honor of M-A student Aisea Bojack Mataele

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Three M-A parents – Stella Bergan, Susan Mohr, and Stacey Alexander – along with M-A football coach Adhir Ranipati worked together to establish the Aisea Bojack Mataele Scholarship Fund to honor the Menlo-Atherton High School student who passed away last December from a rare illness. Here is the announcement: “It is with enormous “Bear Pride” that we […]

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Menlo Park city schools seek input from community on long-term financial planning

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Menlo Park City School District Superintendent Erik Burmeister invites members of the MPCSD community — future, current, and former district parents, as well as all taxpayers and interested community members — to provide their input regarding the district’s long-term financial planning. The Board seeks community input on how to address the district’s fiscal demands at […]

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A call to local businesses: Explore what you can bring to the classrooms of Menlo-Atherton High School

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Did you know that Menlo-Atherton High School was the only school in San Mateo County to be named a California Distinguished School in 2013 (also in 1986 and 2007)? Of current grads, 96% continue their education; 60% attend a wide variety of four-year colleges including private and out-of-state schools, and 37% attend two-year colleges. That […]

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Jen Wolosin talks about safe routes to Menlo Park and Atherton schools at MPCSD speaker event

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You are invited to attend the kick-off event of the Menlo Park City School District (MPCSD) annual speaker series. Jen Wolosin (pictured), Founder and Chair of Parents for Safe Routes, will deliver “Between Home and School: Why Safe Routes Matter and How to Make Them Happen.” Following Jen’s talk, there will be a panel discussion […]

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M-A’s new G-Wing makes its formal debut amidst fanfare – and song

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Administrators, teachers, students, parents, architects, construction workers, and members of the community gathered late Thursday afternoon for the formal opening of Menlo-Atherton High School’s new G wing, which includes 20 classrooms, eight collaboration spaces and a new food service area. After a welcome by Principal Simone Rick-Kennel, the attendees were serenaded by the M-A Choir […]

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It’s a wrap – Santa Cruz Avenue sidewalks are complete

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Menlo Park City Council members were joined by Menlo Park City School District officials this morning for a ribbon cutting to celebrate the completion of the Santa Cruz Avenue sidewalks project. The sidewalk provide safer walking along the busy street for Hillview Middle School students as well as residents. InMenlo contributing photographer Robb Most captured […]

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