University of Washington
Computer Science & Engineering

Leadership Seminar Series

CSE 390L, Winter Quarter 2013


Tuesdays, 1:30-2:20, CSE 305 (refreshments and further discussion, 2:20-2:45)
Instructors: Ed Lazowska / Hank Levy
A one-credit (CR/NC) seminar series


The UW CSE Leadership Seminar Series, CSE 390L, is a one-credit (CR/NC) seminar series, primarily targeted at upper-division CSE undergraduates, that brings CSE alumni and friends to campus to describe how to be effective in a startup, small company, large company, or less common environment. Our guests will discuss topics such as:

  • How do you position yourself to work on interesting projects?
  • In a large company, what strategies can make you influential, vs. a cog in a wheel?
  • What is life like in a startup?
  • If your goal is to start and grow your own company, where do you begin?
  • What are the pros and cons of less common career options, such as teaching high school computer science?
  • What do you need to know in order to succeed, that you don't learn in your classes or during an internship?
These should be great, informative, interactive sessions. This seminar was very well received during the first offering, in 2011.

Course requirements

Regular attendance, active participation. Please read up on the individual and his/her employer(s) in advance of each course session.

Course email archive

To send mail, use cse390l_wi13 at uw dot edu

The lineup

Take a look at the 2012 and 2011 offerings.

Tuesdays, 1:30, CSE 305
Date Room Guest(s) Experience
January 8 CSE 305 Panel of young alums:
    Lisa Fiedler, 2010 UW CSE B.S.
    Sunil Garg, 2010 U.W. CSE B.S.
    Emma Lynch, 2011 UW CSE B.S.
    Brendan Roof, 2010 UW CSE B.S.
These alums are still individual contributors - entry-level engineers - at:
    Groundspeak -
January 15 CSE 305 Garr Godfrey, 1992 UW CSE B.S.
Ed away; John Zahorjan will handle class
Slides (pdf)
Microsoft -> Dreamworks Interactive -> Alias|Wavefront -> GameHouse (CEO/Founder) -> RealNetworks -> Self Employed
January 22 CSE 305 Lisa Boucher, 1999 UW CSE B.S.
Ed away; Hank Levy will handle class
Notes (pdf)
January 29 CSE 305 Sierra Michels-Slettvet, 2008 UW CSE B.S.
Slides (pdf)
Google -> Zynga -> Obama for America -> ?
February 5 CSE 305 Corey Anderson, 1996 UW CSE B.S., 2003 Ph.D.
Slides (Google docs)
"Talking Toaster" video (Windows Media Player)
February 12 CSE 305 Panel of people who continued on to graduate school:
    Magda Balazinska, CSE faculty
    Sidhant Gupta, CSE Ph.D. student
    Jenny Abrahamson, CSE 5th year M.S. student
Why continue in school past a Bachelors degree?
February 19 CSE 305 Jason Tan, 2006 UW CSE B.S.
Slides (pdf)
Zillow -> Optify -> BuzzLabs (CTO) -> Sift Science (CEO & Co-Founder)
February 26 CSE 305 Patrick Jenny, 1991 UW CSE B.S.
Slides (pdf)
Seattle Childrens -> Wall Data -> F5 Networks (VP Product Development)
March 5 CSE 305 Alex Loddengaard, 2008 UW CSE B.S.
Slides (pdf)
Redfin -> Google -> Cloudera -> Atlassian -> freelance -> MemCachier (co-founder)
March 12 CSE 305 Austin Dahl, 1992 UW CSE M.S. ESCA -> UW HIT Lab -> Resolution Technologies -> Engineering Animation Inc. -> Singingfish -> AOL -> Teranode -> Tableau Software