November's episode of My Tech Journey is coming with the story of Pablo. He joined Tupu right at the beginning, being a very enthusiastic and active mentor and advisor. Pablo brings ideas and creates challenges on how to make the mentorship experience more successful and smoother for our mentees.
If you also want your story to inspire and help others, don't hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or consider becoming a mentor.
Stay tuned and find out how with a background in Computer Science Pablo chose a non-coding role in tech.
What do you currently do for work?
I currently work as a curriculum developer at Sysdig. This means I use all my technical knowledge to build technical content for other IT folks. This is not a well-known function but I really like it, as it allows me to blend my technical expertise with my passion for education.
What is your educational background?
I have a BSc. and MSc. in Computer Science. I have been thinking about a PhD, but that is a whole new level.
When and how did you get started being interested about programming/tech industry, and how did you learn?
I started with games very young and was always good with technology. When I was 12, my older brother started working with computers (hardware) and taught me how to put my computers together. I started learning about ping, routers, and some configuration tricks as I played online. I liked robots and started the Robotics Engineer course at PUC-Rio. As I progressed over the courses, I noticed that what I loved was programming and decided to migrate to the Computer Engineer program. I learned a lot at my university, especially the computer science foundations and critical thinking. I also learned a lot from my internships. To me they are complementary and it is great when theory meets practice.
Which books/online courses/websites were helping you the most on your journey?
We had the Internet back in 2004, but it was not like today. You could find books to download, but not many articles, online courses, or tutorials. My university program was strong, and I learned from it. I remember that the Tenembaum books were great.
Having someone around that inspires you and forces you to get out of your comfort zone is critical
How has mentorship played a role in your tech career?
I had the same advisor in my BSc. and MSc. and he was fantastic. I learned a lot from him, and I can't thank him enough. I also had great mentors in my internships. Having someone around that inspires you and forces you to get out of your comfort zone is critical.
I was bound to the DevOps vs. programmer options and did not learn about other functions such as product manager, product engineer, trainer, and curriculum developer
What do you wish you had known when you started your career in tech? What advice would you give your younger self?
I wish I knew more about the Enterprise environment. There are so many different roles that computer engineers can work in. I was bound to the DevOps vs. programmer options and did not learn about other functions such as product manager, product engineer, trainer, and curriculum developer. I would advise my younger self to talk with different people in the industry about the different roles there are. And finally, to use the internship phase to try them out.
Having a good foundation will allow you to move between programming languages or technologies easily
What would you recommend to someone who is interested in starting with coding/designing/managing, but doesn't know exactly where to start?
Be careful with information overload. Even though you have a lot of content out there, it is harder to curate it and find high-quality learning material. Think about your end goal, discuss it with someone more experienced (ideally a mentor), and define a plan of action. But most importantly, study the basics and learn the fundamentals! There are a lot of new technologies and programming languages out there, but they are all built on top of the same concepts. Having a good foundation will allow you to move between programming languages or technologies easily.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time? What are you curious about?
I love playing football and watching movies and series with my family. I am curious about the human brain and human behavior. I hope to study Psychology in the future.
Relationships are a two-way street, and I think that I have learned more than my mentees. They get me out of my comfort zone. They give me a different perspective. And when they accomplish their goals, I share the joy.
Why did you decide to sign up as a mentor/mentee for Tupu? What has your experience been?
Helping others is something that brings me joy. I am not sure if many people realize it, but you learn a lot from helping others. During my bachelor's, I was an undergrad teaching assistant. During my master's, I was an adjunct professor. Then I moved to the enterprise as a technical trainer and curriculum developer. I guess becoming a mentor was an obvious decision, but I missed a good project. Then, Monica Sarbu (which I knew and respected from my Elastic days) co-founded Tupu, and it immediately caught my attention. My experience has been excellent. Relationships are a two-way street, and I think that I have learned more than my mentees :). They get me out of my comfort zone. They give me a different perspective. And when they accomplish their goals, I share the joy.