Like A Girl

Pushing the conversation on gender equality.

Code Like A Girl

Why I Code And Why You Should Too

Source: Unsplash

I didn’t start coding until the summer before my freshman year in high school. Computer science didn’t seem like something I would like as I was more interested in humanities subjects. The lines and lines of code fazed me, and I wondered how I could possibly learn to write my own programs.

But, I decided to give it a try anyways. As a Silicon Valley native, I’ve grown up in a place where technology is the center of everything, so it kind of just made sense. I decided that it couldn’t hurt to try it out, so I enrolled in a six-week summer introduction to programming course. To my surprise, I loved it.

It was like learning a new language, but you could do so much more with it. You could program words to be printed out, pictures to be drawn, and calculations to be made. In more advanced levels, you could make an app, or even write algorithms for face detection. The possibilities were endless.

Coding also helped me develop important problem solving skills that I could use for other purposes. For example, I learned several methods for sorting a list of numbers, something that could be applied to everyday tasks such as alphabetizing a stack of papers. Although a pretty simple job, the expertise I gained in my computer science classes made doing that so much more efficient.

In addition, coding helped me become a more patient person as when I started, I would get frustrated when there were errors. However, I eventually learned to be patient with myself and my programs because I knew it would work out in the end. Oh, and when it did, the feeling I got was amazing.

But, if my experience has not convinced you yet, let me point one thing out. We’re living in a world that is extremely tech-focused, and our reliance on technology is only growing. The hot shower you took this morning? The temperature involved coding that determined how hot the water would be. The red traffic lights that made you two minutes late to work? Also made with code. The machine you made your coffee with this morning? Definitely. And of course, the phone you’re holding? Tons and tons of code.

But, those are just the start. Coding can be applied to almost any industry whether it’s medicine, politics, art, or something else. What we could do with the power of coding has no limit: new investigation algorithms for police, stronger election systems, and maybe even the cure for cancer.

Overall, coding can give you the power to do anything, and, to be honest, it has started to become a rudimentary skill that professionals should learn in order to be successful in their respective industries. The increase in coding interest can also be seen by the over 40,000 student jump in AP Computer Science takers from 2010 (20,120 students) to 2017 (60,159 students). Even if coding does not seem like something you would be interested in, you should still give it a try because there is no harm in just trying. And, if you’re lucky, you might just end up loving it.