In anticipation of International Women’s Day, I wanted to share a bit of my story about what it means to me to be a woman working in cybersecurity as a Developer on Omada’s Tailored Services team.
I initially got my career started after obtaining my Master of Science in Geodesy and Cartography in Poland. However, in Poland there is an old saying that “women in the mines bring misfortune” and I had a difficult time finding work. After much determining I leaned back into my studies and how I had enjoyed programming classes in high school, which led me to think about pursuing a career in IT. I’ve always been one to persevere, and I viewed this as just another challenge that I could overcome.
As fate would have it, as I was gearing up to start this career in IT, I gave birth to my first child, and became worried that my career would stall out before it began. However, I was determined to see it through. After interviewing around, for my first job in IT, I was initially hired as a Junior Developer while finishing up my studies in computer science. After giving birth to my second, I then started looking for a job that would support me in my career and allow me to learn and grow. I was hired as a Junior .NET Developer at Omada in January of 2019, and it has been an incredible 3+ years! For a young mother without a lengthy resume of experience, applying for, and interviewing for the job at Omada was very exciting, and I was pleased that they were able to see me based on my abilities and drive. After passing the technical evaluation I was brought in as a Technical Developer in the Tailored Services department. This has been an ideal work environment for me, with great support from my manager and smart, driven teammates who provided me with excellent training and room to grow.
When asked about what it means for me to be a woman in tech, and specifically cybersecurity I thought for a second, and in reflecting on my journey and where I am today, I feel proud. Although historically I have seen that men have been the ones to be more interested in computer science, both academically and professionally, this never deterred me from my path. Although my job can be intense sometimes, with difficult deadlines and complicated problems, I always dig deep to do my best and incorporate my strengths and my unique point of view to the table for the best possible results. I think it is very important for organizations to have a diverse set of people with different experiences and vantage points in order to get the best possible results.
While offering some wisdom, it’s also important to note some of the best feedback and advice I got along the way, which is that I should always look for things that bring joy and satisfaction. This applies of course to both my personal and professional life. In my current role as a Developer, I work every day with different customers from all over the world to adjust the Omada offerings to their needs. It’s never monotonous, never repetitive, and I get to do and try new things every day. For any woman looking to break into this field I would urge them not to quit, and to persevere through even tough times. Even though things can seem difficult at times, if you have quantitative skills and you’re willing to learn you too could become an IT developer.