Confessions of a Woman Developer: I’m a singer and I’m a PC
When I lived in Columbus, I went to see Def Poetry Jam where people passionately tell their story through poems they’ve written. I’m not much of a poet, nonetheless, here’s my story.
I’m a singer. That’s right I sing, I’ve sung evensongs at cathedrals all across England and Scotland, I sang in the Ohio State Women’s Glee Club, and I am a lifelong music enthusiast. I was a music major when I first started at Ohio State, and I thought I would one day sing in the NY Met … yes, I thought I would be a diva.
I arrived at Ohio State and discovered that “singing homework” is practice, practice, practice. And, after many hours in a closet-sized room with its tiny window and a piano squished between two walls I realized practicing was not really my forte. Instead I wanted to enjoy my new-found freedom and the life of the average broke college student … eating lots of macaroni, staying up all night, drinking lots of PBR, and not practicing hour after hour.
When I got to college, I was the on the low-tech end of the spectrum. I’d never emailed or im’d, and my computer experience consisted of writing a few book reports with Word … or Word Perfect … I can’t even recall. In high school, I learned to type on a typewriter. To quote Journey, “I’m just a small-town girl, born and raised in north Ohio”. You may be thinking I am old enough to be your mom … but I assure you, I am not. So how did I, a girl from small-town Ohio, figure out that I could work with computers?
One day I signed up for an Integral Calculus course called Math 152C. Little did I know that that the ‘C’ in this course meant that this course was Calculus taught on computers. When I walked into the class I almost died. Calculus and computers, two challenging things for me. As it turned out, this class was one of the best courses I took at Ohio State and I signed up to be a Teaching Assistant the next quarter.
The course-style was team-oriented using Calculus & Mathematica to understand the principles of calculus and integration. It was a great environment to ask a lot of computer questions and a lot of math questions. It made me realize I like problem solving and logical reasoning. I found a Philosophy course on Logical Philosophy and thought I would become a Philosophy major.
As luck would have it philosophy majors have to take a lot of History. Perhaps my worst subject. They take not only History of the World, but also History of Philosophy. This was clearly not the place for me. I talked a lot with my philosophy professor and he recommended I try a computer science course … what? Yes, that’s right Computer Science applies a lot of the principals of logical reasoning and problem solving. So, off I went to enroll in my first computer science course.
The introductory Computer Science courses at Ohio State are really fun and thankfully not very intimidating. They have created a 3-course series using an in-house language called ResolveC++. They put you in teams of 1-3 and have in-class exercises. I never felt like I was behind other programmers. I still keep in touch with the faculty who developed these courses.
And now … I’m a PC and that’s my story. See more stories from PCs around the world.
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