Maria is a bilingual graduate of McGill University, where she majored in Biomedical Science and minored in Hispanic Languages and Women’s Studies. After travelling to Europe and to California, she returned to Toronto where she began working in digital media. In addition to dessert, she enjoys diversifying her skill set and expanding her knowledge base. Follow her on twitter at @mariemoussette.
I never thought of learning code until a good friend of mine who studied electrical engineering decided to build his own website. He was a self-taught developer, first starting with YouTube tutorials, and then moving on to other educational websites. He showed me his website and encouraged me to build my own. I was hesitant at first. Social conventions indicated that something considered easy by an electrical engineer was virtually incomprehensible for a lowly Arts & Science student like me. But if my women’s studies classes had taught me one thing, it’s that social conventions were evil and unjust. So, defying these very conventions, I began to learn using free video tutorials and instructional websites such as codeacademy.com. Of course, I quickly realized that coding is not an incomprehensible language reserved for the technically inclined, but rather an achievable and logical system that can be learned by all. Four months later and I can comfortably build a dynamic and aesthetically pleasing website.
During an interview a few weeks ago, an employer mentioned Ladies Learning Code after noticing the coding experience listed on my resume. I noticed they were looking for an intern soon after following them on twitter.
I was drawn to Ladies Learning Code because they do for many women what my friend did for me. They encourage beginners to learn an increasingly relevant and useful skill in a collaborative and unassuming way. Moreover, their programs are affordable and accessible (not to mention the food is delicious).
To date, I’ve had the opportunity to attend two LLC workshops, and can say from experience that they are wonderful. Particularly noteworthy are the many mentors who volunteer their time to teach our students. Their ability to demystify coding is inspiring and their enthusiasm is contagious.
As noted by Carly Chalmers, the disproportionate number of men to women within science, math, engineering, and high-tech sectors is considerable. Organizations like Ladies Learning Code are helping to promote change and equalize the playing field. Their Girls Learning Code initiative, which reaches out to girls aged 9-13, is especially important.
I am extremely proud and excited to be working with an organization that consolidates several of my interests, including education accessibility, personal development, and digital media.
For my stay at LLC, I’ll be keeping you entertained with blog posts, job posts, and tweets. Don’t worry! I will attend the next Become a Brilliant Blogger workshop as soon as it’s available.
We’re very excited to have Maria on the team with us this fall. Follow her on Twitter here, and next time you see her at one of our workshops, be sure to say hello!