‘I know my value’: UT student entrepreneur discusses path to success

Abby Hopkins

When Juan Trevino moved to Texas from Mexico as a child, his family sought the American dream. Through childhood challenges to keep up with the country’s economic standards and thrive financially, Trevino developed an urge to strive for success.

Trevino, a human dimensions of organizations junior, founded his first business in 2015 and has since taken part in multiple entrepreneurial endeavors.

“Since my father had a rough time getting a job whenever he first got here in the United States, I want to make it easier to innovate and create new jobs,” Trevino said.

Trevino began his first business, Cerna Investments, through eBay at 17. Cerna Investments is an international electronic accessories business that now has two additional employees.

“Since I wasn’t really fortunate as a child, I always wanted to take advantage of all the opportunities that I had, and not really settle for less,” Trevino said. “I know my value. I worked for what I’ve done.”

On top of Cerna Investments, Trevino works as a sales and leasing agent for Spaces Management and is working on a new business that will allow customers to have clothes delivered to them, which he hopes to launch next semester.

Additionally, Trevino is head of sales for Clean ‘Em, a home cleaning service that made Built in Austin’s “50 Startups to Watch in 2019” and Student Startup Madness’ eight best digital college startups. Trevino began working at Clean ‘Em because Daniel Munoz, a computer science junior and chief technology officer of Clean ‘Em, said he has always believed in him.

“I always try to bring Juan into my ventures just because I know he’s a great asset,” Munoz said. “Juan is probably the best asset you can have.”

Trevino said Katie Pritchett, a management lecturer in McCombs School of Business, also influences him. Pritchett teaches the course Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which Trevino is taking this semester.

“It was very clear early on that Juan had quite a breadth of experience, but it was not overwhelming to any of his classmates,” Pritchett said. “He was helpful about it and willing to share and to learn, and he still is.”

Pritchett said Trevino is ambitious and driven during discussions and class assignments.

“As we’ve talked after class about some of his current projects, he’s one of those students that I often will say has a fire in their belly,” Pritchett said. “He has a fire in his belly to really want to pursue opportunity and greatness.”

To pursue these business endeavors, Trevino said he had to figure out how to manage his time. As a full-time student with a part-time job and multiple businesses, Trevino said every day is booked.

“If I’m not in school, I’m working,” Trevino said. “If I’m not working, I’m in meetings. If I’m not in meetings, I’m organizing my sales, being in the market more and thinking of new ideas.”

Trevino said being busy is necessary to proving himself and getting where he wants to go.

“Nobody else is going to actually believe in you until you believe in yourself,” Trevino said.