my experience coaching at #DjangoGirlsSD
Let’s flash back to September 2016. I remember my very first tech workshop was the Ruby on Rails workshop with RailsBridge. Why did I go? Because it was free. I had no idea what Ruby was and terminal commands were confusing as heck, but I stayed because it was fun. The environment was very welcoming and there were coaches to help you when you were stuck. At the end of the day, I came out with an awesome fully-deployed app on Heroku. I realized the purpose of these events wasn’t to teach full-stack web development in one day, but it was to get you hooked into tech — and yes, I was undeniably hooked.
Fast forward to July 2017, I am now a coach at the Python and Django workshop sponsored by the Django Girls organization. Django Girls SD is a really active local organization that helps empower under-represented populations in tech. I coached a group of 3 girls. It was a coincidence that one of the girls in my group was my supervisor at my very first job in college — Yogurtland! What a small world! Six years ago, she taught me how to cut strawberries into perfect cubes for yogurt toppings, and six years later, I showed her what a git command was. Oh, Life, always so magical. Honestly, the purpose of all these free tech events is to get more women into tech. Why? Because we need you. I need you! It’s quite lonely being the minority. In my opinion, diversity is important. If we look at the business aspect, companies that acquire diversity are 1.7 times more likely to be innovation leaders in their market(Bersin by Deloitte 2015). If we look at any other aspect, girls are fun! We are creative, charming, and smart! If you want to read more into why diversity and inclusion is a top priority, here is a pretty neat post by Forbes.
Being a coach at this Django Girls event has helped me be more involved in the community and made me feel less like an imposter in the tech world. There is a certain joy when you get to teach someone, especially when you used to be in their shoes. Taking a look forward into my tech career path, I know that I still I have a long way to go. I used to feel a little overwhelmed because I would always think to myself, “I don’t know anything”. However, I know that this is my passion and my calling in life, and I’m determined to be a positive influence and representative in a male-dominated field. As they say, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. I am telling my story, in hopes that it will inspire you!