Facebook's First Female Engineer: "It Was Difficult to Break into the Boys' Club"

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Ruchi Sanghvi was an engineer at Facebook for five years, and was the only woman who was an original member of the team. Now she runs her own company, Cove. She discusses the difficulties and, ultimately, the rewards of being a woman in the tech industry.  When Ruchi Sanghvi arrived for her first job interview at Facebook's headquarters, no one was there. She was undeterred. Impressed by the place, the people, and the product, which she had spent hours using as a student at Carnegie Mellon University, she became Facebook's first female engineer, one of the first 10 engineers hired by the company.

Ruchi's five-year career at Facebook underscores the meritocratic nature of the startup world, where a bright, young engineer like Ruchi, who was raised in the industrial town of Pune, India, and didn't regularly use a computer until her freshman year of college, could play a key role in shaping one of the world's most influential web companies.

Even as she is candid about the challenges she faced at Facebook, Ruchi, who left in 2010 to start her own company, Cove, praised the tech industry for consistently rewarding excellence and ability above all else.

"It may not be a meritocracy, but it is the closest thing to a meritocracy in the working world,” she said. “I think that itself is very powerful."

» Read the full post at The Huffington Post.