If you ask me which sort of women are coders, I would say any.
It is a fact that despite recent efforts, women are still under represented in IT. Although I think that to change this it is essential to focus on early education, it is true that a lot of women can discover the joys of programming at a later stage of their lives, and not necessarily connected to their main activity. Programming can be, or at least start, as a hobby, or as an extension of another activity. For instance, biologists may find that they want to learn how to code in order to crunch observation data, and makers may find that they want to program their hardware devices in order to schedule a process. Whatever reason which brings people into programming, it is important to say that it is not out of reach for a specific age or academic background.
Although there are no miracles, openness, curiosity and effort, can pave the way to great progresses. And the most important thing is that the journey itself, can be fun.
In this context, a little push in the beginning can save a lot of time and effort. It comes without saying that programming is also a craft, and therefore it requires a lot of self learning. However, getting the basic principles right from the beginning, is likely to put people on the right track, on a more pleasant, fruitful, and specially quicker, path.
Starting in September, I will be teaching an introductory programming course, specially aimed at women (although everyone is, obviously, welcome). The course is designed to guide the students through the initial steps of programming, from logical operations to object oriented concepts. Although Python will be used as the main programming language, I would like to think of this as a more general programming course which will introduce the foundations to start learning and using any object oriented programming language, rather than a specific Python course.
I know by first hand experience that sometimes it is a bit intimidating to be the only woman in the class, and sometimes this can stop us from raising our hands and ask questions, which is an invaluable way to learn and stay motivated. In this course we commit to provide a welcoming environment, for women of all ages to participate in the class and learn about programming.
If you are a woman and your range of interests intersects STEM (Science, Technology and Maths), don’t miss this opportunity of extending your skills. Accept the challenge and embark on a fun journey, which can ultimately bring you a lot of fulfilment and joy.
Looking forward to meeting you in September!