After attending an information session at Interface3, Alice Thiel developed a strong taste for programming. A little while later, she started her training in the centre for job seeking women which brought her in a masculine world not without some apprehension. “To be honest, had I been told 5 years ago that I would embark in IT, I would not have believed it.” In this job, like in many others, preconceived ideas die hard. The young developer carries on: “I had this image of the techno-geek, maths student and even the genius in sciences”.
Help to get started
Out of the information session with sparkling eyes, she gradually realises the creative aspect of the web developer job. “Photography, my first career choice, combines technical and creative aspects. It is exactly the same thing with web development. Thanks to lines of code, one can conceive a website monitoring the results step by step”. Even if at first she was surprised that the training was “women only”, it allowed her then to gain self-confidence. Alice explains “when you are a woman and you join a school with lots of men, you are less at ease. Daring to ask questions is one example. I had the opportunity to gain self-confidence and later attend workshops with men feeling totally empowered.
A male job
If the image of the neglected geek is long outdated, IT job is still a very much masculine sector. Alice Thiel confirms:” There are 7 men in my department and only 3 women. There are more men but it is not a criteria for recruiting. Technical skills and personality are really what matters”. Sometimes Alice masters better some technologies than her male colleagues: “it is an ongoing exchange of information”.
For the junior web application developer, you should not be afraid to getting started. According to her “as long as one is curious of all the technical evolution of the sector and motivated, everything is possible! A man and a woman are equally capable”.
Article article published in "La libre Belgique" on March 8, 2016
Translation: Laurence Leseigneur
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