As part of our Meet the Courserians blog series, we caught up with Angelie Agarwal, Senior Marketing Manager for Enterprise at Coursera. Angelie was Coursera’s first employee to focus on enterprise marketing and played a major role in launching Coursera for Business.
What was your path to Coursera?
During my time as a biomechanical engineering postdoc, a lot of my peers kept asking me to proofread their proposals and dissertations or help them prepare for presentations. I realized that I had a passion for telling stories. I also realized I wanted a job that utilized both my communication skills and science background. Even though I didn’t have the traditional marketing background, I decided to interview for communications roles. I ended up going to a biotech company and worked as a liaison between the marketing and technical teams. In my roles after that job, I’ve continued helping fill in gaps between tech and communications.
When I had my son, I decided to take time off until he started school. For five years my husband, son, and I were all home together. When I started thinking about going back to work, I wanted a job where I could do something impactful for the community while also taking into consideration my new role as a mom. I was very interested by what current Coursera employees were saying about the company environment. It jived with their family lives. Finding a place supportive of me and my family commitment was, and is, a super important factor for me. One month before my son began Kindergarten, I started working at Coursera.
What is challenging about your job here?
As the first ever enterprise marketing employee at Coursera, it was a challenge figuring out how to a.) launch the enterprise product and b.) build a super cross-functional, mini-organization within the marketing department. In this position, I have to split my time and commitments between two teams. That means bonding and building social capital with two teams as well as learning about two subject areas. It’s a challenge, but my background as a scientific communications specialist and liasoning between various teams has been extremely useful.
What is fulfilling about working at Coursera?
In my role here, I get to work toward the Coursera mission in a slightly different way. The enterprise side helps people who are already in a career continue to grow professionally and personally. Knowing that I’m helping working parents and other busy professionals like me get the opportunity to advance through marketing courses, full stack web development, or other courses is amazing. It’s incredibly fulfilling to help other parents and professionals grow. I also like that I can see Coursera helping its own employees grow through the Coursera for Courserians challenge [internal professional development program].
What’s something you’re passionate about?
I’m very passionate about community service. One of my mantras is that everyone makes time for the things they really want to do. For me, one of those things is serving on the board of a local nonprofit called Adolescent Counseling Services, which helps teens and their families build tolerant communities through counseling support. I lend a marketing hand to the nonprofit. Serving in my community has always been important to me and was a factor in my decision to come to Coursera to help an even broader community.
What would you say to someone considering a position at Coursera?
Coursera is an incredibly inviting and welcoming place. It embraces lifestyle diversity. You have a huge amount of freedom to be as involved with the workplace community as your interests dictate as well as your life allows you to be. For example there is a company Happy Hour every Friday in the early evening. I’ve only been to one because of my own constraints and family priorities. That said, there are enough different things happening around the company that I still feel like a part of the Coursera community. Last month we had our company picnic, which was super family friendly and a blast to go to with my son. Working at Coursera, I feel like my lifestyle as a mother is supported and welcome.
Interested in becoming part of the Coursera team? Check out our Careers Page to learn more about available positions, company values, and perks and benefits of working at Coursera.4