By Nick Elliott

For The Diamondback

Three University of Maryland alumni shared their experiences with business ventures and provided advice to aspiring entrepreneurs on Thursday at the annual Terps Under 30 event.

Hosted by this university’s alumni association and the Student Alumni Leadership Council, the event featured speakers who graduated from this university in the last six years. Terps Under 30 aims to connect current students with alumni through networking and short talks each year, according to the alumni association.

Akash Magoon, a 2018 alum and co-founder of Adonis — a payment automation platform for medical practices and hospitals — spoke at the event. Magoon said his career has been defined by pushing through hardships, such as when he lost some control over his previous company’s board.

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“It’s not the destination, it’s the journey,” Magoon said during the event. “No matter who or what comes in your way, you have to power forward.”

Magoon’s parents, who owned local gas stations used car dealerships in Baltimore, inspired his own entrepreneurship, he said. At 14, he added, he helped sell cars with his dad.

For Lynn Shui, a 2018 alum, entrepreneurship is a newer venture.

Shui — who co-founded Filterbaby, a water filtration device aimed at improving skincare — spoke Thursday about her lack of interest in business during her childhood and while at this university, where she studied public health science.

She pivoted to marketing, but soon felt she was “going through the motions,” she said.

The idea for Filterbaby was born when Shui moved to New York City for her marketing job and saw a problem with how tap water affected her skin. It was daunting for Shui to start a business with no experience, she said, but she overcame the doubt.

“Not knowing is a beautiful thing,” Shui said. “You can teach yourself with the freshest information and there’s so many resources out there today.”

The alums also shared tips for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Magoon told The Diamondback how many aspiring entrepreneurs enter a state of “analysis paralysis,” or constantly moving between different ideas and subsequently losing motivation.

Magoon struggled with this phenomenon, he said, but quitting his job and leaving with only four months of backpay forced him to stay focused.

“The thing you need to do is figure out how you spend 100 hours a week to solve that problem,” Magoon told The Diamondback. “Try to put yourself in a position where you can work on an idea.”

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For Rick Tamno, a 2017 and 2020 graduate of this university and co-founder of Readers All, a children’s education and literacy nonprofit, finding the “why” behind their ventures is the key for aspiring entrepreneurs, he said.

Tamno said he hopes to collaborate with students and programs at this university to help entrepreneurs find their “why.”

Entrepreneurship is not always about starting something brand new — it could be about furthering a mission a person is passionate about, Tamno added.

“I think you find your ‘why’ just by being engaged,” Tamno said. “By trying these new things, you get to discover yourself, you get to build yourself.”