Like all great stories Code Like a Girl is the culmination of happenstance, persistence and a desire to change the status quo.
Airdrie, Scotland may be an unlikely place to begin our story but it’s in this small town near Glasgow where Ally Watson, founder of Code Like a Girl was born and raised.
“I grew up in a house full of women, three older sisters and a single mother. I guess at the time I couldn’t have been aware of the influence that environment would have on my later years.”
Conveying a refreshing, unaffected confidence Ms. Watson is young, passionate and hell-bent on making a difference in the technology sphere.
“I just fell into computer science. I had my heart set on art school but after two rejections I was at a loss.By the time I let go of my fashion design aspirations my application to university was fairly late. I was only able to choose from the leftover courses that no one wanted – welcome to computer science!”
With no prior experience Ms Watson felt well out of her depth. Not only was she battling the insecurities of a limited knowledge of the curriculum but for the first time in her life Ms Watson was part of a minority.
“I’d always been part of very welcoming and usually female-orientated environments namely my family,friends and the art and design world. Despite being strong at maths I felt I was facing a type of tech snobbery. For at least six months it was very isolating.”
With thoughts of dropping out or at least changing into something more familiar Ms Watson persevered with computer science. Fortunately the tides began to turn.