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San Francisco Entrepreneur Leverages Psychology, Computer Science Background

Daniel Kivatinos is a San Francisco Bay Area-based software engineer and entrepreneur. After completing a degree in psychology and a master's in computer science, Kivatinos entered the startup scene to develop a concept health platform with co-founder Michael Nusimow. This idea became drchrono, a medical platform that now connects 85,000 physicians and 5.5 million patients, currently ranked by INC 500 and Silicon Valley Business Journal as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America.

(Photo Courtesy of Daniel Kivatinos)

As America's baby boomers age, U.S. Department of Labor predicts that jobs connected to psychology will grow about 12 percent over the next several years.

Can you share your thoughts on careers in fields related to psychology over the next 5-10 years?

"It's an exciting time. Using cognitive genomics, psychologists can gain insights about the genetic causes for mental and neurodegenerative disorders including autism, Down syndrome, Alzheimer's disease and major depressive disorder. Positive psychology, evolutionary psychology and the benefits of meditation are extremely interesting areas. Google and others are applying these psychology findings to impact employee productivity."

How did your course of study at university prepare you for your career?

"Psychology focuses mainly on people, while computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of computation and information. People handle new situations by making connections from past experiences, learning and problem solving. Computers are good at repetitive tasks.

I wanted to tackle these two entirely different courses of study at Stony Brook University and later brought them together at drchrono. Shadowing physicians at their medical practices, learning what works, leveraging that for rapid software development is a daily development cycle at drchrono. Connections are important, too. I met Michael, my cofounder, on my first day at university."

Do you have advice for those considering pursuing studies in the psychology/mental health counseling field?

"Psychology/mental health counseling is a very fulfilling career. In college I was a math tutor for mentally challenged students; it felt amazing to make that kind of positive impact. When deciding on what path to pursue, be sure to do something you love. Follow your heart, if it feels right, go for it."

Laurie Jo Miller Farr loves walkable cities. A tourism industry professional and transplanted New Yorker by way of half-a-lifetime in London, she's writing about the best of the bay and beyond for Bay City Guide, AXS, Examiner and more.

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