Own It! By Ufuoma Mulan Itoje
Tell us about yourself?
I am a law graduate, social entrepreneur, with over a decade of artistic experience in the creative industry. I am an advocate and wellness enthusiast. When I'm not sipping tea or doing yoga, I'm reimagining the many ways we can exist in the world. Far from perfect but I have embodied a growth mindset.
What led you to a career in tech?
I was dragged into tech by God themself…kicking and screaming. I resisted and pressure was applied.
I always had an interest in technology but I was chilling. Living life as a baby gay (bisexual) after new found sexuality enlightenment and living alone for the first time in my life.
Then boom 2020, a pandemic within a pandemic. My experience with tech took a nasty turn after being on the receiving end of ‘Malicious Use Of Technology’.
Prior to this I only had user experience. I had found some belonging, healing, joining and building communities online and offline s/o Spring Melanin.
However, by God's grace, the experience from ‘Malicious Use Of Technology’ became a building block. My experience gave me an invaluable perspective and a new found passion for Cybersecurity.
What is your inspiration?
I am inspired by Marie Von Brittan, a Black woman from Jamaica, Queens New York. In 1966 she invented the first home security system with tv surveillance because of high crime rates in her area and low response from the Police.
As a nurse Marie Von Brittan saw a problem, thought of the resolution then built it.
I am always inspired by my mother whose strength and resilience surpasses everyone.
Advice to your younger self?
My advice to my younger self is to embrace your independence. Listen to your intuition. Implement and enforce boundaries. Trust yourself more than you trust others. Pray for discernment and for God to strengthen your heart and mind. Be mindful of who you allow in your space.
Younger me; You have value, you are valuable and you are beautiful from the inside out, Own It!
If you could invite anyone to join the Black Valley community, who and why?
Investors for projects that have a social impact.
Give thanks to all of the women led tech communities who have paved the way for tech newbies to enter the industry with support and encouragement. Thank you for the courses, mentorships for holding space and giving us everything we ask for. I could not have done it without you! - S/o @blackcodher
‘A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step’ Lao Tzu Take the first step…skip, hop, jump. Do whatever it takes to move forward. Bet on yourself always!