Currently, I build software for a marketing company. I help provided our partners with the tools they need to become more efficient with their clients. I mostly focus on the frontend side of the code stack, including React, HTML and LESS.
What does your work entail?
My day-to-day job involves a lot of meetings, relationship building and coding. Coding is what I was hired to do, but I do not code every day. Every other week I plan my coding work assignment and give time estimates to my engineering manager. Throughout the week I have one on one with manager to go over my career goals, I review other software engineers code submitted on Github and give live demos on what I have been working. Every day is not the same, and that excites me.
What do you like about what you do?
I really enjoy small wins. So when I solve a problem that I thought I could never solve, it put the biggest smile on my face. Oh...and the money is great. :)
What do you like/dislike most about your job?
I am lucky enough to work at a company where I am not the only black female developer. I have created strong relationships with these females, since we can relate to one of the biggest problems in tech — DIVERSITY. Plus they are also just really dope people. Even though doors are being opened for us in the tech field, there is still a bunch of racism and bias that black females have to fight through. Another thing I love is how flexible my job can be. I have the option to work from home or go into the office to grab coffee with my coworkers. I also do not have a set start time I have to begin working. So if one day I need to sleep in a little— or a lot, I have that option.
What’s a common misconception people have about what you do?
You have to be smart. I'm a true believer that anyone can learn how to code. If you know how to read, you can learn how code. If you know how to communicate, you can learn how to code. All coding is a series of steps that you are complicating to the computer. There are so many types of developers that you don't have to follow one path into coding.
Breaking into Tech
What education or skill are needed to do this?
NONE! If you know how to code you can get a job as a developer. While it's nice to have a degree in CS it is not required. At the end of the day everyone goes through the same interview process and if you can pass the test, a piece of paper doesn't matter. Disclaimer, I went to a bootcamp. All a bootcamp is self learning with structure. If you have the discipline to learn on your own this option is not required either.
What advice would you offer someone considering this career?
Patience. There is not shortcut approach to learning how to code. I have put in a lot of hours and late nights learning how to code. If you can dedicate one hour a day to learning you will get so far. And if you want a great support system when trying to learn how to code follow the #100daysofcode hashtag.