Lessons from 2021: Building the World I Want to Live In Through Mentorship and Allyship

I know, I know. It’s February now, isn’t my end of year blog post a bit late? True, but some important things happened in 2021 that are worth mentioning, so here goes ….

As we’re entering the third year of the global pandemic, a common theme that a lot of folks feel is hopelessness. A lot of things feel out of our control. I too have felt discouraged. But I’ve also been fortunate to not have contracted COVID yet (being vaxxed and boosted might have helped 🙂 ), or lost anyone close to me to COVID. I certainly don’t want to dismiss the trauma that many people have experienced over the past two years. Rather, what I’ve tried to do myself in this time is to focus on changing the things that I can control, instead of focusing on the things I cannot control. Understanding that every person’s situation is different, I encourage you to make a positive change in whatever area of your life you can control. Continue reading

Lessons from 2020: Seizing Opportunities in a Difficult Year

2020 has been a difficult year for many people. So, why would I write an article about seizing opportunities when right now there are fewer of them to go around? And the problem is exacerbated for folks who belong to one or more marginalized groups. Is it wrong to even be talking about this?

Well, that depends. For me, I’m defining opportunities as:
Being able to help / give back to others if you are in a position to do so. And, when life changes on you, adapt to new opportunities as they arise. The following are some lessons to help you take advantage of opportunities in the new year! Continue reading

What I Learned Teaching A Smaller Online Open Source Workshop (During A Pandemic)

The year 2020 has forced many former in-person tech events and conferences to go online. As a technologist who regularly speaks and teaches at tech events, I’ve also had to make adjustments. Earlier this year, I taught an online open source workshop that was attended by over 100 people. While that event was successful, I thought I needed to plan a bigger event next time to meet the needs of even more people. Instead, circumstances led me to go in the opposite direction …. to teach a much smaller, hands on online open source workshop. Here’s what I learned not only about teaching workshops online, but specifically about teaching smaller workshops online. Continue reading

What I Learned Teaching An Online Open Source Workshop (During a Pandemic)

We’re living in a unique time right now, trying to build community while social distancing and fighting the world-wide COVID-19 pandemic.  A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to teach an open source workshop to the Women Who Code Mobile track community. This might have been just another online event, when I first signed up to put it together 2 months ago before the quarantines started, but it quickly turned into something so much more ….. Over 260 people registered for the webinar, over 100 actually joined, and the Slack channel for the workshop had 73 members …. By the time it was all over, I had merged / closed 20 pull requests. Continue reading

Why Volunteer at Conferences? My Experience at 360iDev

360iDev is an iOS Developer conference that takes place in Denver, CO every August. I’ve been fortunate to attend 360iDev several different ways over the years, including as a speaker in 2018. But this is the first time I’ve attended as a volunteer, and discovered that it comes with benefits you don’t get from just being a regular attendee. Let me share with you what those benefits were, along with some pro tips, and maybe you’ll decide to volunteer at your next tech conference! Continue reading