Professor of Computer Science and Technology Evangelist at Durham University | UK Government Technology Advisor | Digital Skills Expert | Honorary Professor in Computer Science at UCL | Author "Saving Bletchley Park" | Founder #techmums + BCSWomen
Please see below email just received today, I have anonymised it and its not related to these lovely ladies in the photo. I get lots of email/messages like this all the time. We must provide more opportunities for #womenintech.
Firstly, I know you are incredibly busy so I definitely do not want to take up too much of your time. I’ll try and be as succinct as possible!
I was looking to see if you could advise me on retraining as a software developer and if there are any schemes, grants, bursaries available. I am a single parent of 3 and left an abusive relationship (my children’s father) just over a year ago. Whilst I have a degree in xxxxxx, I work as a xxxxxxxxxxx in the voluntary sector- which is neither well paid or guaranteed. I am currently renting and with maintenance money not being provided, huge childcare costs and soaring rent rates, myself and my children are incredibly vulnerable. I recognise that it is up to me to do something about this and I am nothing but determined.
A friend suggested coding, the past two weeks I have spent my evening having a go at small intro courses to java and python. to my surprise I was able to complete the tasks and enjoyed them! I understand these were just introductions- and by no means do I think this is coding! Nevertheless I would really like to retrain in software development. I have no savings, and realistically can’t take time out- unless I get some funding- in order to retrain.
There is a 16 week full time coding course running in xxxxxxxxx (where I Live which I have been recommend) It begins in February 2019 and I would really like to join it. I applied for a career development loan but my credit rating was not good enough to qualify.
I wondered if you could advice of any funding that may be open to me? Or just general advice of courses or options that you know of?
I also just wanted to say that you are an amazing woman, who is so inspiring to so many people. It’s a joy to listen to you on Late night Women’s hour and other podcasts.
I was delighted to finally meet the “other Sue Black” a few months ago at Dundee University ❤️ we’ve known each other for years online but never met in person until Sue invited me up to Dundee as a digital expert.
We are often mistaken for each other, I’m a computer scientist and Sue is a forensic scientist, and congratulated for each other’s work 🤣
It was so wonderful to meet, I’m really looking forward to next time.
I’m always being asked for advice on how to approach particular situations at work/university/college particularly by women and particularly in the tech sector. I want to help as many people as possible so I thought “Why not set up an online group where I can help more people get to where they want to go more quickly?”
So that’s what I’m going to do!
#comingsoon I’m starting a #womenintech Mastermind featuring an online discussion group, webinars, advice sessions, one to one mentoring and a lot more. Add your email here if you are interested:
I’ve been thinking for about hmm well 40 years now, that I’d really like to learn to DJ. Doing Desert Island Discs reminded me. Is it easy? How would I get started?
Here’s a pic I took of Idris Elba DJing last night. He played just the “This is America” refrain of Childish Gambino’s amazing track, mixed in with another track and I was just so desperate to go up there and make him play the whole track.
I forgave him when he played “Smells like teen spirit” by Nirvana, as his last track, an obvious homage to my Desert Island Discs 🤣🤣🤣