Could you introduce yourself to our readers?
My name is Temi and I live in the England, U.K. I’m on a technology graduate scheme at BT and I’ve recently moved into my second rotation, working as a Graduate Software Developer. I have a Bachelors degree in Physics and Geology and a Masters in Geophysics.
What attracted you to tech and STEM?
My tech journey began in 2018 during my Masters degree in Geophysics. I didn’t actually enjoy my degree and knew I was in the wrong industry. But I took a computational module in my first semester where I used MATLAB for data visualisation and realised it was the only module I enjoyed. I did a bit of research into the tech industry and liked what I saw! I also came across lots of women-in-tech/stem bloggers and YouTubers, which really encouraged me to join the industry!
What advice would you give to people breaking into tech?
My advice to others breaking into tech would be to first find a community you can join - even if it’s online! If you’re a woman then you may want to look at joining women-in-tech communities.
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Twitter and instagram are great places to look!
Also if you want to learn how to code then start the 100 days of code challenge! It’s a great way to keep yourself accountable and stay consistent. I’d suggest to start learning with a course as that gives you structure. There are lots of free or cheap courses/learning pathways on YouTube, Udemy, Free Code Camp, Udacity and many more!
Do you have a mentor?
Yes I have a professional mentor at work who was assigned to me when I joined the company in September 2019. We have monthly check-ins and she gives me advice about technical and non technical stuff!
Do you mentor anyone?
I don’t officially mentor anyone but because I actively share my coding/tech journey online I do often have people ask me questions and for advice. I’m always happy to help in any way that I can!
What could tech do better to be more inclusive?
The most important thing in my opinion is to hire more black and minority people at senior level positions! It’s not enough to try to recruit diverse young talent because it’s people at the top who make the decisions that affect the company and general public the most. Companies also need to hire more diverse developers and engineers as they are building new technologies. This would reduce the amount of biases that already exist within certain technologies, e.g. facial recognition.
What's the best advice you've received?
“There’s nothing you can’t do if you put your mind to it!” - My dad. I’m sure someone said it before him but it’s something I was constantly told by my dad growing up and has so far turned out to be true! Everything I’ve achieved so far I’ve worked hard for and put my all into.
What's the worst advice you've been given?
My teacher in year 9 (8th grade) told me I shouldn’t pick physics to study in the following year because he didn’t think I’d be able to do it. I didn’t listen to him and did it anyways - I ended up getting an A* in the exam 2 years later. My lecturers at university said I wouldn’t be able to handle finishing my dissertation and working at the same time - I did it anyways and passed!
Who do you follow?
I follow mostly women in tech accounts on both twitter and instagram! I like to see inspirational women on my feed as it makes me feel motivated to get on with work so I can achieve as much as they do.
What the best way to keep up with what you are doing?
You can find me on Twitter @temiolukoko where I’m documenting my 100 days of code challenge.
On Instagram you can find me @temilola.dev where I post projects I’m working on and occasionally give advice on breaking into tech!
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