I was recently chosen as a speaker for an upcoming virtual summit produced by the organization Moms Can Code. The Founder and CEO, Erica Peterson, created Moms Can Code as a supportive community for moms learning how to code in the tech industry. I decided I had to interview her and share more of her story and the awesome virtual conference she’s producing.
S: Tell us about what inspired you to start Moms Can Code.
E: It started in late June of 2017 when I thought I should learn how to code. My son was entering Kindergarten in September and I had exposed him to coding via Code.org. He was really interested in it and I simply thought, how can I support his learning? When I started looking for learning resources, I quickly became overwhelmed with all of the information that was out there. My next thought was to ask a fellow mom what courses or resources worked for her. When I couldn’t find a fellow mom that was learning how to code, I started asking around and using the hashtag #MomsCanCode. I soon learned that there are thousands of moms learning how to code and the rest is history!
S: Did you know how to code before creating Moms Can Code?
E: I knew a little HTML/CSS and had taken a SAS course as part of my undergraduate degree in Animal Science. I am learning alongside our members every single day! We co-work together virtually every single day and we get to chat and share our progress with one another. Some of our moms are just getting started and some have been coding for over a year. I am somewhere in between!
S: Tell us about the virtual summit.
E: The idea of having a Virtual Summit came after realizing so many of our moms wanted to attend conferences and networking events but even with the discounts provided by some of our partners, most can’t pay for the flight and hotel to attend them. A virtual summit allows us to bring our speakers and moms together at a low cost, gives moms the opportunity to ask questions and network with others they might not have had the chance to, and they can do this all from their house! No childcare necessary.
S: What goals are you hoping attendees take away from it?
E: We’re hoping attendees leave feeling more confident in their choice to learn how to code. We have speakers sharing tips on how to become a more confident coder. We have speakers sharing how they transitioned into tech from an entirely different field. We have speakers sharing how they found remote work positions, and so much more! We even have employees from LinkedIn, GitHub, and Payscale joining to share how moms can use their websites to be better prepared for the interview process. With 41 speakers, there is something for everyone!
S: What is your vision for MCC?
E: My vision is that it is the community where moms come to teach each other, learn from one another, share with each other, and lift each other up! It’s a beautiful thing to see this happening every single day.
S: If you could provide one piece of advice to moms what would it be?
E: My advice is to quit apologizing. Whatever decisions you’ve made have led you to where you are today and it’s up to you to take charge moving forward. Whatever you want to do, do it. We’re all here to support you.
If you are interested in more information about the upcoming virtual summit you can see the full list of speakers and agenda now at www.momscancode.com/speakers. If you are interested in attending the virtual summit, register at https://www.momscancode.com/vs. Hope to see some of you join me for my session on Thursday, April 19th, at 2:00 PM EST. I’ll be talking about my journey breaking into the tech industry.