Branick Weix (Peter M. Julian)
Hometown: St. Paul, Minn.
Major: Finance, minor in Computer Science
Notable Activities/Achievements: Carroll School of Management Honors Program; winner, 2018 Strakosch Venture Competition, Shea Center for Entrepreneurship; teaching assistant for Associate Professor of Information Systems John Gallaugher; founder and chief executive officer of Aryeo.
Post-Graduation Plans: CEO of his start-up Aryeo, which provides software to help real estate photographers run their businesses.
Branick Weix learned to fly his first drone in high school, then added a camera and taught himself a good deal about aerial photography. His aerial videography has appeared in Boston College videos; as a freshman and sophomore, he was hired to travel to Costa Rica to assist researchers with the Leatherback Trust and Seeds of Change so they could use drones in their efforts to protect nesting Leatherback turtles. He came to BC intent on learning as much as he could about entrepreneurship and shepherded his start-up, Aryeo, from concept to an award-winning proposal to reality.
Have you always had the entrepreneurship bug?
When I was looking at colleges, I was constantly debating between doing engineering or business. During a BC visit I was listening to a panel and I heard someone talk about the TechTrek program and entrepreneurship at Boston College. In my mind this was the perfect combination of my interests where I could both build things and have a business experience. Over the past few years participating in the Carroll School classes, TechTrek, and the Shea Center for Entrepreneurship has really helped me refine that vision and give me the skills to get my business off the ground.
Do you recommend starting a business in college?
I’m a big fan of maximizing learning, wherever that may be. For me, I have looked at my business not necessarily as a place to make money but where I can learn the most and where I can apply what I’m learning in the classroom. My advice is to just get started with something, anything, and start talking to people and customers. That’s the best way to go. You end up changing your idea a hundred times, but it’s the stuff you learn through that process that’s important.
What was your most influential experience at BC?
Professor Gallaugher has had a huge influence on me. I took his Computers in Management course when I first arrived, and shortly thereafter I started TA-ing for him and applied for TechTrek. TechTrek Ghana was a tremendous experience. It allowed me to not only to understand technology and how it’s applied, but also to travel the world and see those applications in practice. Here in the U.S. a lot of new companies are focused on social media, but many companies we saw in Ghana were focused on very real, tangible problems that improve the quality of people’s lives, meet basic needs, and improve communications or education. That gave me a good vision for what is possible and made me more excited to start my own business as well.
What about your BC experience has changed you the most?
I think the Portico and Perspectives classes freshman year did a great job of introducing me to the idea of reflection and the Examen. Over the last four years I was able to discover what part of that I liked and what I could apply. Especially in the college environment, you are around so many people—thousands of our best friends. It’s constant. There’s a lot going on, and a lot of moving parts. I’m not sure I realized it when I decided to attend BC, but having such a strong core that emphasizes taking the time to think and evaluate has been very important to me.
Ed Hayward | University Communications | May 2019