HCWO got to talk to Madelaine Coelho, a second year Political Science student and developer for Arcane. Coelho started Arcane’s Code Camp, and began teaching young women and girls how to code. Read all about this pioneer for women in technology!
Political Science, 2nd Year, 19
How did you choose your program?
I chose my program because I find how politics govern society fascinating and I appreciate the experiential learning opportunities King’s provides to me. I was originally enrolled in computer science but I thought it was important to grow on the way I think in different fields, especially since I spend so much of my time immersed in the world of computer science at work.
How did you become a developer for Arcane?
It all started because I was the only girl in my high school computer science course. This made me mad, but I decided to not complain about it and do something about it. So I went into elementary schools and taught girls how to code. I thought if a female led them and taught them the basic skills, then they wouldn’t be so intimidated in a male-dominated high school setting.
While teaching these girls, I was speaking at a public speaking contest with the overview of “Women Empowerment.” I was speaking about women in technology and how we need more pioneers. I met Erin Pollet, an all-around rockstar of a woman who told me to come work for Arcane.
They sat me down and asked me what I wanted to do at Arcane. I told them I wanted to start a camp and from that day Arcane Code Camp was a thing. I held the dual role of Code Camp Program Coordinator and Web Developer. I have now been a developer at Code Camp for the past two years.
What is your favorite thing about working at Arcane?
My favourite thing about working at Arcane is the opportunities I have to drive community initiatives. I have the backing of a company to let me run a camp. I have had the opportunity to teach over 250 children the fundamentals of code and this is something I would never be able to do without Arcane.
Another thing is the importance of my work. With Arcane working with clients like Goodlife Fitness, Roots, and CARPROOF, I find myself being able to work on big clients with extensive sites. It’s a cool opportunity to know that so many people are exposed to your work. It makes your work seem so much more valuable.
How do you balance your job, school, and life?
With a very thick agenda. Unfortunately, with managing school deadlines, 25 hours of development work, and the desire for a social life, I find myself struggling. There aren’t enough hours in the day, to be completely honest. I think the only way I can balance it is because I am no longer my first-year self who thinks she can do it all. I know I need down time and I know I need to say no to deadlines.
Are you a part of any other groups at Western/what else do you do?
I am actively involved in the King’s University College Community! I am the website commissioner on the King’s University College Student’s Council (KUCSC). I was also on the soph team this year for King’s!
What is your main goal for the rest of this school year?
My main goal for the rest of the school year is to stay positive. I think a positive attitude about where you are, who you are, and what you have the ability to do is crucial.
Have you decided on your summer plans yet?
This summer I’m travelling to Geneva for a research paper on Dispute Settlement in the WTO. I’m then travelling with my friends around Europe for the remainder of the month. Outside of those travels I’ll be working my third full-time summer at Arcane, running the summer sessions of code camp, and hopefully expanding on the Code Camp franchise.
I’m currently developing a curriculum to teach adults how to code, which I’m working on with the Director of Development at Arcane. This would be an intensive program that will allow graduates to receive a job in the web development field. I’ve been working on this since September but while balancing school, the addition of this curriculum has been put on the back burner. I hope to get back at it this summer!
For more information on Code Camp visit arcanecodecamp.com