Case study

Web developer — Rosie

After taking a degree in the history of art, Rosie taught herself to code and went on to work as a junior developer

How did you get your job?

I learned to program at a free CodeFirst:Girls evening before getting a traineeship with a financial tech company, which brought me up to the level of a junior developer.

It's a sector that cares more about your ability to build things and less about your academic prowess

How relevant is your degree to your job?

I graduated with a BA Hons History of Art with Material Studies (BA) from UCL, so technically it's not relevant in the slightest.

However, the methodologies and philosophies behind logical operating is something I use every day while programming.

Coding is incredibly creative and you need to be able to think out of a linear form in order to approach certain problems, so philosophy-based humanities degrees lend themselves perfectly to this type of work.

What are your main work activities?

We have a stand-up meeting every morning to discuss everything we did the day before and what we will be working on next.

Sometimes we pair on projects, or work independently. If something has broken, then it's all hands on deck; otherwise its very flexible and quite laid back.

How has your role developed and what are your career ambitions?

As a developer, no matter what your level, you learn every day. As new languages, upgrades, software and technologies come out you have to constantly develop in order to be as effective as possible in your role, bringing new ideas and new tech.

The learning curve is a lot steeper for a junior developer but the learning never stops.

What do you enjoy about your job?

There's a problem, I fix it. If something needs building, I build it. I have great job satisfaction.

It's a very good sector to work in and you will be well supported by the various different communities out there. It's not often that you have a job where nearly every question you come across can be answered on Stack Overflow.

What are the most challenging parts of your job?

Staring at a computer screen all day. I was brought up to love books and the outside, and in the summer I find it very difficult to stay inside and code.

Any words of advice for someone who wants to get into this job?

Find a mentor, learn to code, build a project and show people.

It's a sector that cares more about your ability to build things and less about your academic prowess.

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