Erin Sanchez applies cultural studies to entrepreneurship


Erin Sanchez (’13, Cultural Studies) is passionate about work/life balance.  After several years of freelancing as a writer and marketing consultant, she launched Candidly Erin to support women in their journeys to “…flee the 9-5 and build businesses they love.”  Drawing from her experiences of procrastination and self-doubt, Erin provides women with business skills and actionable strategies for becoming successful entrepreneurs. Recently, she spoke at Seattle’s GeekGirlCon 2017 on the panel “Digital Entrepreneurship: Creating an Online Business in Your Pajamas.”

Reflecting on the role of cultural studies in her current trajectory, Erin comments, “You don’t have to work in a non-profit or a job explicitly focused on social justice to draw on its principles. In fact, it’s impossible to ignore them! Even in creating marketing content for corporations and for-profits, I’m always careful and deliberate about narratives.  I’m profoundly aware of who is being left out of conversations and how we can better represent and serve people from all walks of life.”

Erin recalls a GeekGirlCon audience member asking how she might launch and run a business, despite a debilitating chronic illness.  Erin pointed out that chronic pain and illness impact thousands of people around the world—more women than men, statistically, and that entrepreneurship can provide much-needed flexibility, balance, and independence in their lives.

“As someone with autoimmune diseases, starting this business was important to me. Helping women acquire the knowledge and skills they need to take charge of their own financial freedom is incredibly fulfilling. And being a part of leveling the playing field for female entrepreneurs—that’s something I’m so passionate about. Cultural studies can be injected into anything you do. To me, it’s about being a conscientious, everyday activist.”

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