Luciana Hernández, Full Stack Developer
What got you into web development?
I’m 47 years old, some people might think it’s a bit late, but I have a story for this.
Twenty-five years ago I did a Systems Analysis degree. I always liked technology and programming. I completed my degree, but I did not finish taking a few pending subjects. Then I did many different things, and well…I lived my life. I completely moved away from the subject, and in this pandemic, I found myself without a job. I saw as a sign and as an opportunity to train myself for web development. So here I am…after a whole universe of things that has happened in the world of technology and in my personal life, working in a totally different scenario. But I have always been attracted by logical thinking, and also by art. They seem like very different things, but they are not. It’s been hard months of a lot of preparation and mental exercise, but I love it!
What do you love about the web development industry?
It is amazing. It definitely seems simple to be able to provide solutions through a screen from the point of view of a client or user, but behind all this, it is quite a challenge to be able to deliver that solution, since there is a lot of knowledge, and a lot of work. You feel great satisfaction when you get what you propose to be captured on the screen and work. It’s also quite creative the way you can work things out. I must also say that it is a good environment to work as a team, since one can always contribute things and above all learn from others. It is an industry where knowledge is selflessly shared, where it is very enriching to teach and also to learn. The developer community is very open in this regard and very collaborative.
What advice would you give someone wanting to pursue a career similar to yours?
I would tell them that first of all they have to like logical thinking. Be willing to invest a lot of time in learning and much more in practicing. Spend many hours in front of a PC and get used to having a high brain load. Sometimes when looking for solutions, your brain does not stop thinking about it even when you sleep! The development has to seem interesting and attractive to them, and to be able to maintain that feeling over time, because sometimes there are many frustrations in the process, but the goal will always be to resolve.
I could say that it is the future, but no, that already happens, and it is valid like any other profession, it all depends on what attracts each person.
What are the best resources that have helped you along the way?
First, it helped me to do a bootcamp, because it forced me to be solely focused on that, with a high level of demand, and evaluative instances. But it is also valid if you are self-taught, because there are many free courses, a lot of promotion of this activity and high demand for programmers.
Development is something that is never finished studying. It is too broad, and it is impossible to know everything, but knowledge can always be expanded.
There are many resources: courses, videos on the Internet, documents and pages that can be consulted, and it is also very important to be inserted in communities to be able to ask and help with doubts.
There is the myth that it is a language that is too flexible and unstructured and that this can lead to mistakes.
What are your hopes for women in a career in web development in the future?
The same as for any other activity in which women have been conquering. There is no reason to make a gender distinction in development. Whoever thinks otherwise does not have enough open-mindedness to be a good developer. Today there are few women in this field, but I trust that this will increase over time. Societies have evolved a lot on these issues, so I have no doubt that this will be the case. It does not matter what your genre is, if you are interested in something and you can do it, go ahead!