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Ashton Eaton, gold medal winner at the 2016 Summer Olympics in the decathlon. Photo by AP
Dec. 13, 2019 7:01 AM PST

Technology companies have long looked for academic degrees, work experience, and other traditional qualifications when they hire people. In the case of Rose Brutkiewicz, though, it was a 3.73-meter indoor pole vault and other college athletic achievements that helped her nab a tech job less than two months after her May graduation from Tulane University. 

Brutkiewicz joins the company of other athletes at her employer, MuleSoft, a software maker owned by Salesforce. She estimates that at least six people on her 30-person sales team have competitive athletic backgrounds—including her manager and another coworker, a swimmer and track athlete, respectively, both of whom interviewed her for the job. While Brutkiewicz had done a sales internship in college, she said the roughly 30 hours a week she had dedicated to pole vaulting for four years at Tulane helped her rise above other job applicants.