How A Web Development Whim Turned Into a Career Win For Front End Engineer Liz Lee

How A Web Development Whim Turned Into a Career Win For Front End Engineer Liz Lee

Written by Liz Lee and WWCode HQ

Member Reflections

Liz Lee didn’t know what she wanted to be when she grew up. After graduating from the University of California, Santa Cruz with a degree in history, a longtime interest, she was an unlikely candidate for a career in technology. However, upon entering the professional world, she decided to follow another passion and began teaching herself the art of writing code. She fell in love with the discipline almost instantly, so much so that she found herself sitting in front of her screen with joy, opening and closing simple modal click events that she had written.

While she had a passion for programming, the process of learning to code by herself was still a challenge. She was able to find a position at a company that paid her to develop websites as she was learning the craft, but, being self-taught, she lacked some of the context and deeper understanding that comes along with a formal CS degree. However, she was able to overcome this by immersing herself in the tech community, both at work and at meetups like Women Who Code. There she was able to learn by example, taking advantage of the experience of women who were more advanced in their careers to improve her skills and confidence.

It took a lot of hard work and dedication, but Liz was able to quickly become proficient in CSS, Javascript, and PHP, while also learning some Python and Java. A uniquely visual person, those languages gave her the tools she needed to create dynamic web applications for the companies she was working for. Lately, she’s been growing her leadership skills and has acted as a mentor for others, heading up a team to establish coding best practices in the organization.