Sharing knowledge and experience with the community
Spark Solutions team is always eager to share their knowledge and experience with the IT community. In May 2016 two of our devs (Marta & Chris) volunteered to serve as mentors during Rails Girls workshops in Białystok (Northeast Poland). They devoted their free time (a whole weekend) to teach others the basics of coding and they loved the experience.
Rails Girls is a global non-profit initiative, the aim of which is to give tools and a community for women to understand the technology and to build their ideas. They managed to achieve it by providing a great experience in building things and by making technology more approachable. Workshops like this one take place periodically in different cities all over the world.
Promoting diversity in the IT community
At Spark Solutions we really like the idea of Rails Girls workshops. It is not only a great opportunity to grow the local IT community but it also fits so well with our company values. We have been promoting diversity in Tech since the very beginning of our company, both in our everyday work as well as events that we organized like DevHeroes in Warsaw and Open Commerce Conf (OCC) in New York. AT OCC thanks to our partner and sponsor GoDaddy, we even offered free diversity tickets to members of tech minorities.
Benefits for everyone
Rails Girls events are a perfect opportunity for girls to get their first experience with coding and even start their tech careers. Our developer Marta is a great example here. Some time ago she participated herself in a workshop organized by Rails Girls and know she is not only a very skilled dev but also became a mentor for those who are at the beginning of their paths.
It is not only the participants, however, that benefit from Rails Girls initiatives. Afterward, both Marta and Chris admitted that they had learned a lot themselves.
Learning by teaching
By learning you will teach; by teaching you will learn – Latin proverb
Teaching and mentoring other people turn out to be a great source of knowledge and useful experience. But what exactly can we learn from those who have little or no knowledge at all of the subjects? Marta and Chris pointed out that the most important thing they learned during that weekend was to speak about technology in a simple way so that everybody (even total beginners) could understand. It is a skill that actually proves very useful in their everyday job for example while tutoring junior developers but also when talking with the non-tech colleagues and the clients!
They also enjoyed the experience, met new people and generally had a really cool weekend.
Since our first experience with Rails Girls was so great, the Spark Solutions team will continue supporting the initiative. Already in October Marta will be mentoring again at the workshop in TriCity, this time together with another Spark’s RoR dev – Peter.