WeAreTheCity’s Rising Star Awards are now in their fourth year.
The Rising Star awards were introduced to showcase the UK pipeline of female talent below management and to create female 100 role models across 20 different industries and professions.
Over the year’s, the awards have recognised 400 women across the UK and India.
In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a Rising Star award.
We spoke with Joanna Baptiste, who won a 2018 Rising Star Award in Entrepreneurs & Start-ups.
Joana is an award-winning 17-year-old founder of three startups, podcast show and Economics magazine, alongside her code-club, STEM workshops for disadvantaged pupils and Economics/Politics Conference, sponsored by Microsoft.
She regularly gives talks to schools&universities, and once to HRH Princess Anne, and will speak at the AI World Summit and Innovation Enterprise Summits.
She has also sat on, and chaired, panels for Cambridge University, GirlGuides, STEMettes and Facebook, and recently was fully funded by the American Embassy to attend a Female Leadership conference in Boston. She is the proud winner of WeAreTheCity, InspiringJuniors, and Women of the Future Awards.
How did you feel when it was announced that you’d won a Rising Star award?
I was so thrilled! Being a part of the WeAreTheCity Rising Stars network is incredible, there are so many inspirational people to learn from and build off of. Having the privilege of winning the award alongside so many incredibly talented women is a dream come true, and It just makes it even better to have been able to celebrate with so many others, and have everyone’s stories shared with the world. Awards like these are so important to empower women and give younger girls role models to look up to, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to be a part of that change.
Please tell us what has happened in your career since winning the Rising Star awards?
So much has happened since the Rising Star Awards! I was honoured to be a winner in Inspiring Fifty’s Inspiring Juniors Award, which celebrates the top 10 young female tech entrepreneurs. I’ve also had the privilege of featuring in several media outlets, and I’ve just announced the launch of my charity – She dot, which aims to bridge the socio-economic gap for young girls pursuing typically male-dominated fields. During July, I was invited by the US Embassy to be fully funded to attend the Women2Women female leadership program in Boston, Massachusetts – including days at Harvard, Babson College and Converse! I’ve also been fortunate enough to be invited to talk at several events, including the CINO Summit, and World Summit AI. The opportunities have truly been unimaginable, and I’m so thankful for everyone who has helped play a part in that.
What advice would you give to someone else going through our award’s process?
Everyone has their own style, don’t be afraid to be you, and live by your own rules. You are so worthy of every prize under the sun, so own your achievements and don’t shy away from opportunities. When applying to the awards, own your achievements! By showing what makes you you, being your true authentic self, and being unafraid of showing how awesome you are, you’re sure to succeed.
What tips would you give to our other members to enhance their careers?
Diversify. I think too often we get sucked into one job, one path, one passion, when in reality there is so much more to us than just one thing. A career is more than just a job, it’s a lifestyle, and I think this can be improved significantly when we pursue all our passions. For example, if you have a career in journalism, get involved in your favourite sport, give back through charity work, start a blog. Whatever it is that you love doing, pursue it. I always believe that if you’re passionate about something, you’ll always find the time, even if it does end up being several things!