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How This Alumna Left Home and Became a Software Engineer in San Francisco

By Flatiron SchoolJune 13, 2019
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Sophia H. didn’t expect to leave Colorado Springs to start a new career as a software engineer in San Francisco. If you asked her about coding two years ago, she wouldn’t even really know what you were talking about.

But, she was no longer growing in her role as an account manager at a management consulting firm. She knew she needed a change and Sophia returned to her past interest in programming. After some false starts, she enrolled in Flatiron School’s Online Software Engineering program.

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Sophia’s coding journey began when she was a violin major with an interest in data science, which piqued her curiosity in programming. But, there was a catch. “It was also during that time that I realized I had absolutely no skill to be a data scientist or programmer because I’ve just been playing the violin my whole life,” she says.

Fast forward a few years, and Sophia has graduated from college and entered the workforce. It’s not long before she started feeling stifled at work. She returned to she realized it was a good time to revisit her previous interest in learning to code. Instead of data science, she decided to pursue software engineering.

Learning anything new requires commitment. Sophia tried unsuccessfully to work her way through several free programs. Something was missing—but then she learned about Flatiron School through our partnership with Kode with Klossy, Karlie Kloss’ foundation dedicated to helping teenage girls learn to code.

Sophia applied and received a Women in Tech scholarship from Flatiron School. “This seemed like a really great opportunity, but I was still a little apprehensive,” she says. It turns out that Sophia was holding herself back.

Even though Flatiron School could help her achieve her goals, she wasn’t sure she wanted to commit to the program. “I realized how much of a procrastinator I was and how scared I was of change,” she says.

She needed to trust herself to succeed. Sophia started to enjoy coding more as she progressed. “I was learning and I could see that I was learning,” she says. Flatiron School focuses on the learning process, which Sophia says is applicable to the job itself. “Tech companies care about if you’re able to learn and can pick up a new language,” she says.

She learned as much about herself as she did software engineering at Flatiron School. Now, she’s a software engineer at Stitch Fix. “Being a software engineer is a life changing experience,” she says. “I feel like I’m growing professionally. I work on new things every day.”

Overcoming her own doubts has led her to San Francisco. She wasn’t looking to relocate, but Sophia describes Stitch Fix as a dream opportunity. “I’m astounded by how I got here,” she says. Through Flatiron School, Sophia broke into San Francisco’s thriving tech community.

As a software engineer in San Francisco, Sophia has found happiness through new opportunities and experiences. She works in a diverse company where she feels supported. Great restaurants and museums are a quick BART ride away.

With our new San Francisco campus, more people like Sophia can become software engineers and unlock their potential in an incredible city. Our curriculum helps you learn the skills you need today to break down barriers and the soft skills to grow within the industry.

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