Tech Expert Inspires Cleveland Coding Bootcamp Students We Can Code IT’s Summer 2016 full-time coding bootcamp had the incredible opportunity to hear Kathy Golden, CTO of Original Equipment Connection (OEC), speak about her pathway to becoming a successful woman in technology. Golden spoke to the class during We Can Code IT’s Lunch and Learn on August 3rd, 2016. During Lunch and Learns, employer partners and other experts speak to bootcamp students career-oriented topics, specifically challenges that people who are underrepresented in tech face. Golden’s story began with her parents encouraging her work ethic. “Hard work has been the cornerstone of my success,” she said. Golden started her career working in a casino in her home country of Canada, and was encouraged to work in technology when others noticed her work ethic and problem solving skills. She went to college and earned a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, then moved to Northeast Ohio to work on tech teams. After she gained several years of experience she moved out to Seattle to work for an organization owned by Bill Gates. It was an amazing opportunity, but she missed her friends, family, and the tech community here in Northeast Ohio. “They say the grass is greener on the other side. I saw the grass. It wasn’t greener!” She moved back for the CTO position at OEC. Kathy addressed the challenges she encountered when it came to asking for opportunities. She acknowledged her desire to help others and encouraged coding bootcamp students to recognize that others are willing to help. She attributed much of her success to asking for opportunities. At one point, she wanted to lead others on a team, and that was the first time she sat down with her manager and asked for the chance to lead. “My hand was shaking so much that I was spilling my water,” she said. “But I got my first chance to lead by asking for it. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want.” She also advised the class to participate in company culture initiatives, and to help others around them succeed. Students in the bootcamp asked questions regarding company culture, diversity in technology, and other topics imperative to them. To find out more about joining our bootcamp and having the opportunity to hear from inspiring speakers like Kathy Golden, apply for our coding bootcamp today.