Physician to Developer with TDI 10

Threads Dev Interviews

I am finding developers on Threads and interviewing them, right on Threads. You are welcome to follow along and let me know on Threads if you would like to be interviewed.

“one thing that I specially love is the tech community”

โ€” Alfonsina Lizardo ๐Ÿง‘โ€๐Ÿ’ป ( on Threads

Today we have You list gamer in your bio, how has being a gamer impacted or influenced your software development career?

Hi Ryan! Glad to be a part of this dev inerviews!

I think being a gamer may be one of the things that made me consider software development when I decided to change careers, it has always been a dream of mine to work in the gaming industry.

Even though I work as a frontend developer now, I’m also interested in learning game development as well, I actually participated in a game jam last year and made my first game with unreal! ๐Ÿ˜Š

What I liked about unreal is that it has this concept of blueprints, where, without touching any code (I don’t know C++) you can still make fairly decente games, it’s still recommended to have some knowledge of programming concepts though, such as conditionals, loops, etc.

You mentioned changing careers, and you have a unique career change. Can you talk about your career change and what influenced that decision?

Of course! I graduated as a physician in 2012 in Venezuela, it’s a 6 years long career there. But when I was going through my 4th year I already felt that maybe I had chosen the wrong career ๐Ÿ˜…

But I don’t like to start things and not finish them and it was only 2 years more to finish my career so I did. I also worked as a doctor for 2-3 years after that, but I didn’t feel happy with my job, I felt stressed and anxious all the time because well people’s lives were on my hands.

It was too much adrenaline ๐Ÿ˜…

I think like most careers, but even more so with medicine, you have to be very passionate about it, I have colleagues who enjoy what they do, they like that adrenaline, I didn’t, like I said, it was very stressful.

So I decided to change careers, I didn’t know what I wanted to do at first, but I definitely needed a change, so that’s when I started considering software because I’ve always liked technology since I was a child ๐Ÿ™‚

I love this story because many people would not consider changing careers after 6 years of preparation. What do you like about being a developer as compared to being a physician?

There are many things, but one thing that I specially love is the tech community.

I don’t know if it’s the same everywhere, but when I was studying medicine the environment was kind of hostile, my teachers used to say that thay treated students like that to thoughen us up because people’s lifes were in our hands but that kind of “tough love” didn’t work for me, I can’t learn like that, in fact quite the opposite, I think it drove me away faster ๐Ÿ˜…

It’s totally different in tech, almost everyone is eager to help and teach others, including me ๐Ÿ™Œ The work environment is great, or at least it has been that way where I’ve worked, there’s a lot of team work, if a mistake is made we don’t look for someone to blame, we look for how to solve the issue and take the necessary steps so it doesn’t happen again.

Another thing that I also love is normal working hours ๐Ÿ˜…

In medicine I used to do 12-24 hours shifts. It was really exhausting, and I think it should change, I don’t think it’s right for someone who has so much responsability in his/her hands to work for so many hours straight, it’s more likely that you make a mistake, but well that’s the system for now.

What advice would you give to someone considering changing careers to software development?

Good question, I’d say to do some research first, software development is so big! You have web development, mobile development, frontend, backend, etc.

Find the one you like the most and start from there, also try to join some communities, that helps a lot so you don’t feel alone in your learning journey and have people to ask your questions too.

Also, dont be afraid to ask questions! There are no dumb questions, and changing careers is a big step! It’s not easy, but if you truly like software development, it will be worth it!

There are also many other careers in tech, if you find that programming is not your thing, you can consider those as well ๐Ÿ™‚

You mentioned software development is big. What part do you enjoy the most and how did you find that?

Well I’ve only worked as a frontend developer and I enjoy it a lot because I’ve always considered myself as a very visual person, so I enjoy building a site little by little and see how it keeps looking better and better in the browser ๐Ÿ’œ

And I found it by chance actually ๐Ÿ˜… when I met my husband, he was studying development and he liked working with DB and backend but he wasn’t so good in the design/frontend part so I offered to help and I fell in love with frontend development ๐Ÿ’œ

Although I studied some backend development with node and express in 2021 and I enjoyed it as well, so I’d like to work with it too and see how it goes ๐Ÿ™‚

Since you spoke a bit about communities in dev,, what are some examples of dev communities you have found? Local, online, language specific?

I have 3 communities where I’m really active, all of them are in spanish though ๐Ÿ˜… the first 2 are local from Chile (but anyone can join) and the other one is global and focuaed on women in tech, but anyone can join as well, these are their disccord channels:

Javascript Chile:โ€ฆ
ProIn Chile:โ€ฆ
Mermelada Tech:โ€ฆ

You recently got involved with SheCodes? How did you get involved and why is this important to you?

I got involved with SheCodes, I applied to be an ambassador ๐Ÿ˜Š it’s basically about promoting their workshops which are focused on teaching women how to code, they’re paid workshops but I think the price is pretty good for what they teach.

As an ambassador they gave me the SheCodes basic workshop for free, and found it pretty good, I’ll be posting a little more about it soon ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s important to me to help promote these kinds of initiatives that help women to learn how to code because lots of women seem to think coding is not for them, simply because they’re women, and it’s not like that at all!

I firmly believe that anyone can learn how to code, and I like to support as many people as I can with that ๐Ÿ˜Š because I always had that support from my husband, parents and some friends, but there are a lot of people who lack that support.

What is one area of tech or programming that really excites you right now?

This may be a predictable answer but I’m really excited about AI ๐Ÿ˜… I mean there have been so many advances in so little time, and contrary to what some believe, I don’t think it will replace developers, I think it will enhance our skills if we learn how to use it properly, so I’m pretty excited about that ๐Ÿ™Œ

How can people find you elsewhere online?

Thanks for having me! It was really fun ๐Ÿ™‚

People can find a link to my other social media on the link on my profile, which I’ll also leave here:โ€ฆ

Full interview on Threads: @ryan.swanstrom โ€ข Threads Dev Interview #10 I am finding developers on Threads and interviewing them, right here on… โ€ข Threads





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