Wow, 2018 has arrived. It’s a whole year ahead. I am very enthusiastic towards this year, so I hope it does not disappoint me. 2017 was terrible for me in personal terms. That fact makes me want to leave it behind. But being fair to him, 2017 was also full of great things, and most of them are on the professional side.
It was the year in which I became a data scientist, a solid year in learning that required all my strengt and willpower to achieve the goals I had set for myself. A year in which I got a new job, changing of sector and field. Something that, at first sight seemed unthinkable to accomplish.
I set an ambitious challenge, and I got it!
Methodically I showed up every day in front of the computer to study. I did it alone. Nobody around me had taken the path that I decided to walk. The few persons I knew who had wanted to enter the world of data science quietly resigned as soon as they had a participation medal. But I was pretty serious about that, and I wanted to go further. I did reject several job opportunities that belonged to the older me, while I kept pushing myself to go a little bit further every day.
I had to take not easy decisions. As an examle, I did have to remove from my life those people who did not share my vision of this challenge. And at the same time, I had to find people whose get the inspiration, the encouragement and the motivation that my effort required.
As a result of that in 2017, I discovered R-ladies community, as well as the Women-In-Tech group. Both groups made by women have been created to encourage and empower us to go into IT. I learnt a lot from this gatherings, and I started not feeling alone anymore. I also attended all meetups that were about data, technology and Data Science. At some point, the difficulties of entering into a new world got softer and as I found myself more comfortable attending to high-end lectures I also felt my confidence on the subject increased. Step by step the worm became a butterfly ready to start to fly!
2017 has also been a year of inflexion for the female world in IT. Susan Fowler was the first to “uncover” the conditions that many women have to suffer in the workplace for the simple fact of having been born women. The situation he describes is not particular to the more digital world, but it is true that the digital world is, in general, a world “colonised” by men. In several conferences that I attended this year dedicated to women in the IT sector, we could put this issue on the table and talk openly about the causes and consequences that this has.
The Fowler case changed something. 2017 was closed without the founders of Uber at the head of the company. Personally, I do not care if it was just a paint job, or if it was what it should be: a change in the existing paradigm. Uncovering such a topic makes it much more possible for other women to rise up to report harassment and disparagement they receive in their jobs. With that, for me, it’s more than enough.
My challenges for 2018 are: -Settle my new profession of data scientist, and start being a mentor to professionals who want to start or change their career towards the data world.
- Write consistently blog entries. At least, a post or an article each week.
- Lead a talk in the R ladies meetups.
- Code challenging projects on my own.
- Compete in a Kaggle competition and finish it within the first quartile.
- Reach the second phase of the Google Challenge Web development.
- Learn more and better about data visualization with tools such as Shiny, D3 or Qlik.
- Learn more about Blockchain.
2018, here I go!