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Aaron Sahagun, Co-Founder

Alumwire Social Network CEO Aaron Sahagun

You may know first hand how difficult and frustrating it is to find that job or land that career while you’re still a student or a recent college alum. The University career center doesn’t cut it, Monster.com job postings that aren’t spam are one in a million and your friends “hook-ups” for jobs never work out. That’s when you turn to Alumwire.com, a social network dedicated to young adults looking to find great opportunities that match their skill set. Co-Founder and CEO Aaron Sahagun, 22, recently recognized by BusinessWeek as one of America’s Top 25 Entrepreneurs Under 25, takes a moment with The AsiaConnect magazine to talk about what makes his growing network bigger, badder and better than the rest. Learn more about Aaron Alumwire in this week’s Young & Professional Profile.


Alumwire, LLC


January 2006




Aaron Sahagun
Co-Founder and CEO




West Covina, California

Current residence

San Francisco, California


University of California, Berkeley, BS in Business Administration (2006)

Work Experience

Alumwire, LLC
Co-Founder and CEO

Associate Consultant

Deloitte and Touche, LLP
AERS Intern

Merrill Lynch
Assistant Financial Advisor


Half Filipino and Half Latino (My dad’s roots go back to Taiwan and my mom was born in Mexico and her roots go back to Lebanon)

About the company

Alumwire, LLC is a professional network with the mission to effectively consolidate the most important career resources for college alumni, students, and faculty, maximizing the career opportunities in the college market. Our unique content and partnerships with CareerBuilder and The Dow Jones allow us to be at the forefront of career resources. The only requirement to access Alumwire is an e-mail address with a “.edu” suffix or an invitation from an existing user. Alumwire’s vision is to be the one-stop shop in career resources for the college network beginning in the United States and eventually globally. Alumwire first began in Harvard and UC Berkeley.

Most notable milestones

1. Co-Founders Aaron and Allan Sahagun Selected by BusinessWeek as “Top 25 Entrepreneurs Under the Age of 25”
2. Partnerships with CareerBuilder and the Dow Jones
3. The Facebook API and marketing efforts increase traffic, registered users, and revenue
4. Many people within the network have found jobs and have even found programmers for their startups, such as http://www.excelerade.com/. The programmer for that startup was found in Alumwire.
5. Our expansion to over 1,000 colleges in the United States.

What’s the niche?

Alumwire is an up and coming company that consolidates the most useful career resources through a professional network for those transitioning from college into the job market. We currently own this niche market.

What’s the biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge is growing fast enough in order to stay ahead of any potential competitors and keep up with the dynamic content that defines the current web market (web 2.0).

What’s in store for the future?

We plan on expanding to the whole UC System and Ivy League System. We will then expand to the UK, Germany, and Australia. We want to eventually find an effective way to help developing countries increase their standard of living via a professional network.

Who would you like to be contacted by?

I would like to be contacted by anyone that has an interest in “Web 2.0”, especially social networks.

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Best way to keep a competitive edge

Know your competitors as well as you know your own company if not more. Also, work smart, hard, and innovatively.

Guiding principle in life

Our lives are what our thoughts make of it. Therefore, think positively and dream big because if you can dream it, then it can happen.

Yardstick of success

The amount of people that are able to find career opportunities and increase their quality of life through Alumwire.

Goal yet to be achieved

I have not yet been able to find a way to effectively help developing countries via the Internet. Part of the reason is because many of these countries don’t have access.

Best practical advice

“Know every single part of your business in the same way that you should know every single part of yourself.” -My grandfather

Supportive words from a family member or friend on your venture

“Don’t worry about the harsh criticism about Alumwire, it just means that you are about to do something great.”- My mother

“Think positively. I know Alumwire will go far because whatever you touch turns into gold.” – My father


My mother: I call her the “ME” (Mother Executive) because she is my sounding board in terms of my business ideas. She ran her dad’s tech. business at the age of 18 before coming into the United States. She is my motivator and source for spiritual feeding.

My father: He keeps me grounded and reminds me to not take myself so seriously–life is more than just business. My dad and mom are definitely my number one fans/ supporters.

My grandfather: He teaches me to see the scope/big picture of things. He had several businesses in Mexico and then started his own tech. company in the United States. He is just brilliant and was the first person that exposed me to entrepreneurship.

Professor Roberts and Banks from the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley): They have supported me in all my endeavors and are always pushing me to reach higher goals.

Associate Vice Chancellor Ron Coley of UC Berkeley: He taught me that life is all about expectations and encourages me to continuously assess my current life situation with my values and future goals.

Kinman Tong: He has been the big brother that I never had. He specifically opened the doors to corporate America for me with Deloitte–most people don’t know that. He continues to give me advice and open doors for me.

Don Osborne (founder and president of Inquarta): He really helps me keep my composure and provides me with business expansion ideas.

What motivated you to get started?

Both my brother and I were going through transitional stages–I was going from college and into the working world and he was transitioning from high school and into college. We both realized that there were career gaps in terms of resources that were not being fulfilled by our universities, particularly during the transitional stages. As a result, we took it upon ourselves to fill these career gaps. Most importantly, we wanted to do something that would increase the standard of living for those around us.

Like best about what you do?

All the people and relationships that I have formed. I enjoy meeting new people and just exploring ideas and experiencing new things with them. I also love working with my brother Allan–it’s an excuse to spend more time with him. He’s my best friend 🙂

Like least about what you do?

The lack of sleep, but it’s totally worth the opportunity cost.

At age 10, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a sports doctor. I then realized at age 12 that I didn’t like looking at blood.

What was your first job?

I was a web designer for my grandpa’s tech company.

Biggest pastimes outside of work

Basketball and Dancing!

Person most interested in meeting

Barack Obama. I believe that he is going to positively change the political and social landscape for minorities.

Leader in business most interested in meeting

Larry Ellison (“The Oracle”). He is one of the few real rags to riches stories in Corporate America.

Three interesting facts about yourself

1. I’m a pretty good salsa dancer–I LOVE dancing in general
2. I was the lead singer for a rock band in high school named: “The Headless Horsemen”
3. I’m a big sports buff, especially when it comes to Cal football. I rarely miss any home games and crowd surf at every game that I go to. Go Bears!

Three characteristics that describe you

1. Driven
2. Positive
3. Entertaining

Three greatest passions

1. Family and Friends
2. Innovative ideas
3. Music and Sports

Favorite book

“Lucky or Smart” by Bo Peabody. He was the founder of Tripod.com. He believes that it’s not about being smart or lucky in business. It’s about being smart enough to know that you are getting lucky. It’s also only a 50 page read–very efficient.

Favorite cause

Habitat for Humanity. I enjoy helping build homes for low income families in the Peninsula.

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Interview by Kinman Tong
Introduction by Sumaya Kazi

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