What I got out of WeCode 2015
- Practical skills. People made presentations about how to write your resume, salary negotiation, and coding interviews. There were also workshops where they’d teach you how to make a simple app in a new language or platform. I went to a Palantir workshop where you had to figure out how to help clients with specific problems, such as detecting investment fraud or using technology to help emergency services make a large outdoor music festival as safe as possible.
- Being human together. I got to talk to all these women at top tech companies in a more intimate setting than a normal networking event. There was a panel of new grads who were working at different companies, and you could ask them anything. The keynote talks were about people’s career stories, challenges (personal and technical), and advice. One of my favourites was a lady who worked at LinkedIn and talked about how she accidentally deleted a project and had to rebuild everything, as well as her story of deciding not to be a stay at home mom (she was feeling really guilty about it until her mother told her, “The baby’s not going to remember!”).
- Job leads. If you’re looking for an internship/job, every company there is hiring and has a booth, career-fair style. Last year the booth surrounded the audience seats for the keynote, so you could go talk to company reps any time there wasn’t a keynote talk.
- Fun stuff. Last year there was a puzzle day where you could solve a series of puzzles/riddles to win prizes. There was also a scavenger hunt with team activities, like trying to throw a pencil in a cup with friends you had just met. If you needed a break, or wanted to get dinner (the only meal not included in the conference ticket), Harvard Square is full of delicious bakeries and other food places.
Getting there from Western University
Unless you have time for a super long bus ride, you’ll want to fly there. This will cost you a couple hundred dollars. If travel expenses are a significant financial burden, you can apply for a scholarship (due January 15th).
You should also apply to get housing with a Harvard student if you haven’t already.
Sign up with a friend! I highly recommend it. Joanna Chen will be attending, and is also the Western rep this year — let her know if you have any questions.