Spotlight on Riya Krishnan

Meet Riya Krishnan: Gen-Z advocate and Founder of Wavve, an open innovation platform elevates Gen-Z driven solutions by providing mentors, resources, and a support system to young changemakers.

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What inspired you to get into your line of work?

Maybe it's because we’re digital natives, or that young people are often the first to recognize when systems are broken or outdated, but it’s without a question that teens today are more invested in global issues than ever before. After researching and debating complex social issues as part of a Foreign Policy Coalition I used to be involved in, I started to see if we could try generating solutions for the issues at hand instead of just arguments. Sure enough, our team came up with novel solutions to global problems from Financial Inclusion to the Digital Divide. However, when we began to seek out accessible ways to pursue our bold solutions, we found we had no platform to realize them. And it wasn’t just our small group of 30 students- we found that teens around the country, especially underresourced ones, face significant barriers to driving innovation and social impact. 

Thus, Wavve was born. Our open innovation platform elevates Gen-Z driven solutions by providing mentors, resources, and a support system to young changemakers. Today we have a portfolio of eight ventures disrupting in areas from sustainable hydroponic gardening to peer-peer mental health platforms.

What is the best piece of personal advice you’ve ever received? How about advice you’ve given?

The best advice I’ve received would probably be: “Don’t change yourself, change the game”, or in other words, stay grounded but don’t be afraid to push the boundaries of what’s accepted. 
The best advice I’ve given would be that “it’s okay to start something before you think you’re ready”, taken from Richard Branson, to one of the nonprofits I help mentor.

Who is your entrepreneurial idol?

Warren Buffett- for his simplicity of character and his persistence when sticking to his investment strategy.

Go-To Strutting Down the Street, Confidence Boost Power Song: C.R.E.A.M. by Wu Tang Clan
Apple or PC: Apple 100%
Fave Film: Argo or Les Miserables

Alex Gordon