Last night was the first birthday of the Girl Develop It Salt Lake City chapter. While this organization has only been in our community for a short time, I feel like it has made a huge difference for me. Girl Develop It has been a home that encourages me to learn what I want and even have the courage to shift into software development. It has been the support to help me separate the trolls and jerks online from the people who can be supportive and accepting.
I have been a gamer for a long time starting with arguing with my brother about if I could play our NES because I was 4 instead of 5 going all the way until now when I raid with an amazing guild in World of Warcraft. I have seen people who have been jerks just because I was a girl and people who just didn’t want to accept the reality in front of them. I’ve met some friends and I’ve learned to be a little less proud to be a woman in games. I’ve watched people go from kind to awful just because they noticed I wasn’t a guy. This was the thoughts of software I had before Girl Develop It. I was scared to wade in because I had met people who would become vicious when they learned you identified female.
My favorite part of Girl Develop It? That would be the amazing developers I meet there. Both the women and the men. The men help me know that I can be accepted and the women in the group are some of the strongest and most awesome people I’ve met. I’ve found a home to talk through programming logic. I’ve found a home to help others learn what I’ve learned. I’ve found a home to be a developer.
Girl Develop It Salt Lake City, it’s been a great year and I hope there are many more great years ahead.