Mark Hall

Alumni on the Rise – Mark Hall

Zero to hero - company building and entrepreneurship

A business without growth isn’t much of a business at all, something that Mark Hall (BS ‘08, MSE ‘09) knows all too well. With a passion for company building and growth, Hall uses his public relations and entrepreneurial skills to help businesses pave their own path in the ever-growing world of venture capital. 

Originally from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Hall now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, where he works at Sequoia Capital, a venture capital firm that specializes in seed-stage, early-stage and growth-stage investments in private companies across technology sectors. 

After obtaining his bachelor’s in public relations from the University of Florida, Hall decided to pursue a master’s degree in the Master of Science in Entrepreneurship program at UF Warrington

“I’ve been passionate about the idea of company building and going from zero to one since my early days at UF,” said Hall. “From the moment I discovered the MSE program and understood the quality and character of instructors in the program, I was sold. It felt like one of the few programs that matched my interests and passions with practical skills.”

Upon receiving his master’s, Hall worked at Google as a senior account executive, sales manager and then head of U.S. West VC & Startup Partnerships before moving to Sequoia Capital as partnerships lead. 

“My time in the MSE program, along with my personal entrepreneurial endeavors, have provided a partial lens into the founder’s world that makes me a more effective operator in venture capital,” Hall explained. 

Now, Hall uses what he’s learned in entrepreneurship to the fullest. With both educational and professional experience, and a passion for startups, Hall continues to help companies grow. 

“The intersection of startups, technology and how capital can help a company change its trajectory has always been fascinating to me,” said Hall. “Having worked at Google before this, I had an opportunity to learn how various go-to-market efforts and partnerships can help companies grow and scale. We all strive to fund the next big company. If I can be a small part of a company’s journey on the path to something big, I would take a lot of pride in that.”

To students who plan on entering the world of venture capital and entrepreneurship, Hall offers the following advice. 

“Optimize for experience in high-growth industries and environments,” Hall said. “The growth rate of your industry is strongly correlated with the degree of opportunities that will be available to you in the future. I knew the technology sector would be impactful on the future of the world, so I bet my career on that. One thing I wish I would have given more consideration to when starting my career was investing in my personal network earlier. Your college connections have the potential to be a great enabler for you and your career.”