Like A Girl

Pushing the conversation on gender equality.

Code Like A Girl

It’s not Luck, it’s Hard Work

The story about how I have been able to thrive in as a woman in tech.

Image from Create Her Stock

It all started in June 2012. I was working at a call center at the time because it was the only job that paid well enough for me to sustain my mother and sister after my father left us and I became the breadwinner at home. I was still in college and I had applied to an internship position at Microsoft. My father wasn’t supportive about it. He said he didn’t want me to work for free.

I was interviewed four times by four different people for that role, and each time I was asked the same question:

why do you want to work at Microsoft?

How was I supposed to answer that question? Truthfully, I needed the money but I also dreaded going to that call center every day knowing I had potential that was being wasted, so I said it was my dream.

I failed my first interview. I got so nervous that I asked to switch from English to Spanish (my native language), and I wasn’t able to answer more than half of the questions!

I still got hired, why? Because I was hungry. I was driven.

My initial contract was for 1 year, extendable for up to 6 additional months. I took the plunge. I was earning little money but I decided to move closer to the office and live on my own. I made the move with zero support from my family and no guarantee of a full time position at the company.

Was it scary? Oh yes. It drove me to work as hard as I could, working late night shifts and early mornings, and I did that to demonstrate to others, but mostly to myself, that this was my dream and that I wanted it, bad. It got lonely. It got scary, but I did it, and I succeeded.

My internship got extended, then I got hired, again. I graduated college. I became independent, and I did it all by myself, and I’m proud.

Fast forward five years and I’m now a Digital Marketing Manager, at 25. I’m living the dream that I’ve crafted!