Get to know 3 women in NYC tech building game-changing products

by Liz Warren
June 17, 2019
women
image via shutterstock

Engineering is a passion, as well as a skill that requires extensive learning and dedication. Because of this, the people who land roles in engineering and product at prominent NYC tech companies are typically the cream of the crop. We spoke with three women in tech who mapped out how they got to where they are today, and what the journey has been like for them.

 

Laura Campbell
Software Developer

Software Developer Laura Campbell attended bootcamps and apprenticeships before joining online developer community Stack Overflow.

 

Tell me a bit about your engineering background. Did you attend a school or bootcamp? How did you arrive at your current position?

I attended a bootcamp in February 2018. I did the 15-week web development immersive program at the Flatiron School on their Manhattan campus. I met Stack Overflow at the job fair Flatiron held after I graduated, at which Stack Overflow was recruiting for their apprenticeship program. I was selected as one of four apprentices for the 11-week program at Stack Overflow in which I was paired with a dedicated mentor and the focus was learning and gaining practical programming skills. I was then hired on full-time after that!

 

What is your favorite project you have had the opportunity to work on, and why? When you hit a snag on a difficult project, how do you work through it?

I joined a team that was launching a product update pretty soon after I joined, so it was really exciting to be able to work on that. It was something the whole company was looking forward to — a private instance of Stack Overflow for mid-size companies, which we had only offered for small or enterprise clients previously.

When I hit a snag on a difficult project, I try all the tools in my arsenal — debugging locally, using Chrome dev tools, writing down the problems I’m trying to solve, and, of course, searching for answers on Stack Overflow! But when I’m confident I’ve given it my best effort, I’ll tag in someone from my team or my mentor to help me debug, pair program, or fill in some of my gaps in knowledge. Asking questions and pair programming have been the best ways for me to learn an entirely new codebase and programming language, which I had to do when I joined Stack Overflow.

 

Supatra Indhara
Senior Software Engineer

After 10 years of experience as a consultant in the financial industry, Supatra Indhara switched to tech startups. She walked us through her career journey, and what led her to become a senior software engineer at edtech company Teachable.

 

Tell me a bit about engineering background? Did you attend a school or a bootcamp? How did you arrive at your current position?

I have a bachelor’s degree in computer science. My first coding language was Turtle Logo when I was in high school. I came to the United States during the first dot-com boom for a startup programming job. After the dot-com bubble burst, I became a software consultant and spent almost 10 years in the financial industry. I wanted to get back into the tech startup world, so I joined StreetEasy, and later Quartet Health. I am now at Teachable on the core team working on our content creation and consumption application.

 

What is your favorite project you have had an opportunity to work on and why? When you hit a snag on a difficult project, how do you work through it?

I have really enjoyed my time at Teachable. We have been working on setting up a new environment and migrating some features to React. I get to discuss architectures, best practices and coding standards with my team. We strive to improve developer happiness by using better toolings and writing great code. I am grateful to be here at this stage when we are laying down the groundwork in order to move faster. It is also satisfying to see the product being used and know that our work impacts a large number of people enabling creators to earn a living. We have an awesome team where people bring varied skills and experiences to the table. Collaboration, transparency and offering a low ego environment are core values here and they are key to working through any difficulties and challenges.

 

Linda Abraham
Product Manager

Though Linda Abraham is now a product manager, her background is heavy in engineering. She discussed what inspired her to make the move to product, and how her tech background helps give her a different perspective at travel tech company Hopper.

 

Tell me a bit about your engineering background. Did you attend a school or bootcamp? How did you arrive at your current position?

I went to school for software engineering and have a bachelor of engineering from the National Institute of Technology in Calicut, India. After graduation, I worked for two years as a software engineer for PayPal. I moved into a technical product manager role which allowed me to get to know the software I was building out from an end-to-end perspective. It was in that role that I learned I loved working collaboratively to build product features with members of different teams. At Hopper, as a product manager, I work with members across the company from the business, technical, data and user experience teams to create and ship features.

 

What is your favorite project you have had the opportunity to work on, and why? When you hit a snag on a difficult project, how do you work through it?

One of my favorite projects since working at Hopper has been developing our new flight scoring feature. I worked closely with the data science and user experience team to rethink our flight display list. Hopper users consider more than just cost when choosing their flights, so an algorithm was created ranking flights based on things like price, duration, layovers, etc. A challenge while creating this feature was keeping the algorithm true to its core while still surfacing the right experience for the user. Whenever we hit a snag, it was nice to work through the weeds with the whole team involved in the project, including UX, data science and the technical teams to brainstorm solutions.

 

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