Alumna ventures into world of tech

by Lee Ann Jastillana / Beacon Correspondent • February 1, 2017

Allison Grinberg-Funes has gone from Emerson to the Tech world
Courtesy of Allison Grinberg-Funes
Allison Grinberg-Funes has gone from Emerson to the Tech world
Courtesy of Allison Grinberg-Funes

Updated: Feb. 2, 2017; 4p.m.

Amid the musical theater actors and indie filmmakers of her graduating class, Allison Grinberg-Funes ‘11, found herself venturing down a more peculiar road toward a career in technology. As a content specialist at Raizlabs, a software design and development company, she bounces from working with development teams on blog posts to marketing different events.

When Grinberg-Funes started at Emerson in 2009, she was mostly interested in poetry and fiction. But she soon gained an appreciation for creative writing in a business perspective.

After graduation, Grinberg-Funes worked several internships at publishing houses and later lived abroad to teach English in Spain. When she came back to Boston in 2012, she got a job in customer support and fell into the tech startup scene. From there, Grinberg-Funes took an interest in how language affects customer experience and began content writing for marketing.

Grinberg-Funes soon began freelancing. Her company, agfunes, was a way for her to use her writing more. For more than two years, she worked with clients from a range of industries, including eye-care, health, and fitness.

The diverse client-base challenged Grinberg-Funes as it required a massive amount of research. Through her company, Grinberg-Funes says that she has learned to have humility and ask for help.

Grinberg-Funes has also become interested in diversity within the tech industry. Upon seeing a Facebook post about the then-new Tech Ladies community, Grinberg-Funes immediately took part.

“Something that I’m really passionate about―and I think that this resonates with a lot of students at Emerson―is building communities,” she said.  

The Tech Ladies community includes developers, marketers, and employers across all departments. As a woman in the tech field, Grinberg-Funes said that she enjoys being a part of such a supportive community.

“I have never seen anyone knock anyone else down,” she said. “It’s a consistent effort to give everyone else a leg up.”

Allison Esposito, the founder of Tech Ladies says that she is thrilled to be holding their first Boston event and looks forward to connecting with the Bostonian community. Esposito encourages student involvement as well.

“Students who study CS or are planning on working in tech when they graduate are welcome to join our community.” she said. “They can apply on www.hiretechladies.com/join.”

Grinberg-Funes is currently organizing a networking event for Tech Ladies, a community that connects women with opportunities in the tech field. She highly encourages Emerson students to take part.

In collaboration with Lovepop Cards, a company that sells intricate cards inspired by variations of origami, the event will take place on Feb. 6, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Lovepop Cards, HQ in Boston and is open to all genders.

Like many similar events they hold across the nation, the event’s goal is to bring people from different STEM industries together for networking, conversation, and light refreshments.

Veronica Armstrong, head of customer happiness at Lovepop Cards and founding member of Tech Ladies, worked closely with Grinberg-Funes to arrange the event.  Armstrong encourages all interested Emerson students to “be open minded about the experience.”

“It’s definitely an opportunity to make connections with the brightest people in tech,” Armstrong said. “The professional talent is insane.”

All of Grinberg-Funes’s interests in creating content stem from a love of storytelling and the different ways storytelling can be enacted-- from creating marketing articles to writing the help section of a website.

Coming from a diverse family background, Grinberg-Funes was inspired by the different stories her relatives across the world would tell. She then began to write her own content in second grade.

“It was really great to hear stories about how everyone came to be where they are and what everyone’s personalities were like,” Grinberg Funes said. “From a young age, my family were characters for me.”

For Emerson students considering a career in copywriting or content strategizing like Grinberg-Funes, she advises that one should first examine his or her preferred way to tell a story, be it through marketing for a company or developing a blog site.  

“Every single industry needs someone who knows how to communicate,” she said.

Most of what she learned at Emerson, she confesses, has been from her peers. She said she has picked up a lot of ambition, support, and motivation from her friends and classmates. With that, Grinberg-Funes advises Emerson students to reach out to alumni.

“I’m sure, if you’re like me, you wish someone would’ve been more open to helping you,” Grinberg-Funes said. “I’m always happy to help.”

 

Correction: A previous version of this article stated that Veronica Armstrong was a customer service representative for Lovepop cards. She is, in fact, the Head of Customer Happiness.