Dr. Araceli Venegas-Gomez is one of those people who has the ability to successfully balance both work and home life. As founder and CEO of QURECA (Quantum Resources and Careers), Venegas-Gomez helps her company to stand out in the quantum community as a leader in quantum training. As a new mother with a six-month-old infant, Venegas-Gomez has found herself continuing to work hard and succeeding at QURECA. “Each personal situation is different, but in my own experience, being able to see my baby grow and at the same time expand the QURECA team and business is a perfect balance,” She explained. “It is not easy at all, but so far being a mother is not slowing down my professional career. I would not change a thing.”
It is no surprise that Venegas-Gomez is passionate about her company. QURECA is a business focused on offering resources for both individuals and businesses within the quantum industry. Because this industry is already facing a talent shortage, due to specialized jobs requiring years of quantum training, companies like QURECA are desperately needed. The business offers recruitment for quantum companies, helping them to find the best candidates for a job. QURECA also provides community building and business development opportunities, helping to grow the quantum ecosystem further. According to Venegas-Gomez: “QURECA Ltd. provides a range of professional services, business development, and the solution to the quantum workforce skills bottleneck: the first online platform for quantum training and resourcing, to support individuals and businesses to be a part of the quantum revolution.”
Venegas-Gomez, unlike many others, became interested in quantum technology while working for a large enterprise. “While working in industry, I was also pursuing a master’s degree in medical physics,” Venegas-Gomez explained. “Through that, I got introduced to more concepts and the mathematical formulation of quantum mechanics. I loved it so much that I decided to change my career and move into academia to pursue a Ph.D. in quantum simulation.” During her studies, Venegas-Gomez found herself to be in a unique position, one that she could use to develop her professional career. “During my time in academia, I realized that coming from industry, I had a strategic position between the science and the business,” she said. “Thanks to a great network of peers and mentors, I materialized some ideas in my company QURECA, where I am the founder and CEO.” Venegas-Gomez used the support of peers within the industry to develop a leading company in quantum training with partnerships with ColdQuanta, Zapata Computing, QuantFi, and more.
In dealing with recruitment and career development within this industry, Venegas-Gomez has experienced firsthand the need for more diversity. “Quantum is a very niche field,” she explained, “and a lot of startups come out of universities and research institutions. As the academic field is more male-dominated, so is the quantum industry.” Thankfully, Venegas-Gomez notes, this hasn’t stopped companies from working harder to recruit more diverse individuals. “I see a lot of companies pushing to have a more diverse team,” she said. “There is an identified talent shortage in quantum already, which means that it is very hard to find people with the right skills. Then, when you look for women or other minorities, the pool is even smaller.” While a small talent pool adds challenges, the quantum industry is working to expand the pool to overcome many of these issues. “I think overall the community is aware that diversity brings a much healthier culture, and we are all trying our best to create a diverse ecosystem.”