Asha was an Assistant Project Manager before she joined Ada’s first cohort. Asha will be kicking off our first blog post as a part of the “Where are the Adies Now” blog series by telling us what she’s been up to since graduating.
What were you doing before you became a Software Engineer?
I got my bachelor’s in Accounting. After college I did some accounting work, then eventually did some project management for a lighting manufacturing company.
Where are you currently working and what do you do?
I work for Kickstarter PBC in Brooklyn, NY. I’m currently on the Internal Tools team, mostly working on features that help our Integrity team review projects for risk and fraud. Coming up, I’ll be working more on projects for the payments service.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
Kickstarter as a whole has a great culture. It’s inspiring to be surrounded by talent and creativity all around me, from creators to coworkers. Kickstarter isn’t a typical tech company that’s purely focused on profit, and working there doesn’t feel typical either. Engineering has over 30% women which is extraordinary.
Describe a typical day in your role.
A typical day for me involves working on my current project, which includes research, reading code, developing code, and writing tests. I work with our product manager to hammer out details of the project, as well as getting feedback from the team that we’re building for. We have stand ups twice a week, a planning meeting at the beginning of the cycle, and a retrospective at the end. Engineering at Kickstarter has a lightweight agile workflow, which I think works well for us.
I pair with my team lead once a week, and sometimes more if I need it. If I’m touching code that other developers are more familiar with, I can always ask questions or pair on a problem. People are very helpful and giving with their time and knowledge. I also have a mentor that I talk to once a week. Right now he’s helping me with a side project.
Other than coding, my typical day involves me moving around to different parts of the office. I have a designated desk but I love working in the diner, the solarium, or the library. People are always baking or cooking in the kitchen so the diner is a great place to get first dibs on the treats. We also have a lot of creators come by the office to preview their project so that’s always fun.
Any advice you have for others looking to enter the tech industry as a programmer.
What’s great about the tech industry is that there are many paths to becoming a programmer, and many avenues you can take as a programmer. Engineers are very opinionated. Everyone has an opinion of what makes you a good developer, what is a “real” engineer, what kind of work you should do, what kind of company you should work for, etc. Just follow your own passion.
You don’t have to work for a “tech” company. You can work in an industry you care about, doing tech. You can work on frontend, backend, mobile, databases, ops, etc. Do the kind of work you enjoy, and find good people to work with. They are out there.