Learner stories

What happens when a Pianist learns to code

Regina G., Chief of Staff @ Matt Mochary, Seattle, United States

Regina's learning journey: Learn JavaScript, Learn React, and Web Development.

What inspired you to learn to code?

I went from no code to landing a job as a software engineer mostly because I was interested in tech and in startups.

I found Codecademy and signed up for a Pro membership at the end of 2019. At the time, I dabbled a little bit in HTML and CSS, but otherwise I had no experience.

I made the change mostly because I saw the impact tech could have.

How has coding impacted your life?

After being a software engineer for a short stint, I realized my heart was more into business operations — but tech knowledge never goes to waste.

I was able to demonstrate that I understood tech from a high-level perspective when talking to technical people, which helped them take me more seriously.

And don’t forget the community. The tech startup community is amazing, and I would 100% be nowhere without the people and friendships I’ve walked away with by being part of this world.

I made the change mostly because I saw the impact tech could have.

Describe your dream project.

I don’t have an immediate goal for where I want to be in 5–10 years. It’s something I’m trying to let go of. Every time I think I know where I’m going, I’m usually wrong — something else even better usually shows up.

My dream project involves doing great work, having fun, and helping people — especially underrepresented folks from unconventional, non-linear backgrounds like mine.

Any advice for those who are new to coding?

One: Get yourself a support system. You have to have friends who will lift you up and encourage you. The good news is that the tech community is a very supportive environment.

Two: Tell yourself you can do it. Maybe you’re doubting whether you can do it or not, and the thing is, you’re not going to know until you try.

Three: Hold yourself accountable. Even if it’s just 15 minutes a day, still participate in forums and exchanges. The more involved you are, the more excited you become.

When you're not working, what do you do for fun?

I coach and advise startups and people in their tech careers for fun!

I also get outdoors with my partner. We love hiking trails, riding our bikes, and walking with our dog (a four-year-old Formosan Mountain Dog named Leia).