"Everyone in my team is incredibly supportive. There are no dumb questions."
Sarah Greenidge is a Wiley Edge (formerly 'Wiley Edge) Alumni Java Developer for one of the top investment banks in Canada. She graduated from McGill University in 2019, majoring in Computer Science with a Minor in Linguistics. Being a woman of color and gender minority in a STEM field has been challenging.
Sarah’s story will encourage others to persevere until they find their way. And her interview tips will increase a candidate’s chance of success.
First of all, you're in a minority group being a woman of color in computer science. In a large classroom at McGill with 200 something students, only about 20 to 30 of them are STEM girls.
When I started at McGill it was mostly male dominated in computer science. They weren’t many clubs designated for minorities or women in programming. All the group interests were generic and broad so I joined engineering-based clubs with black students.
Also, we didn’t have many events for minorities; they were mainly department and engineering events.
I started to feel more welcome when a female professor gave me a chance to integrate with her team and start a project. She wasn’t in the computer science department, she was in geography. That’s how I started doing some work in research.
In my final years of university it was good to see greater diversity and groups for women.
My time with Wiley Edge has been a welcoming experience! I was contacted by a female recruiter who is also a woman of minority. It was nice to feel that I was being given an opportunity by someone who probably felt the same as me and experienced similar challenges in life.
Working as an Wiley Edge Alumni has provided me with access to many resources for women in tech and women of color. I joined a volunteering group and was encouraged to develop my career growth. It was like, ‘let's help you build a career here and build a path to help you grow.’ This is something I did not experience at university.
I also feel like they are many efforts within my team to diversify and make sure that everyone is listened to and included. This is very important. Our team is balanced and it's not male dominated; women are significantly part of it, and everyone is actively working towards becoming more inclusive. Everyone’s voices are heard, and all feedback is taken into consideration. It's been nothing but a positive experience for me.
I really appreciate all the efforts of my recruiter, and the whole Wiley Edge team, to build my confidence and help me succeed within the whole process. This support makes it easier, especially for women and minorities to join in, step up and become leaders in tech roles. It is good to see a lot of female executive directors as role models.