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Career Interview by Nairoby Peña-Peralta, Nicole Torres, Shanya Sam & Kimarah Bates

Interviewing Alexandra Williams & Bintu

Tell us about how and why you entered your career

I studied engineering, I was really good at math and science and I didn't like writing. I double majored in architecture and civil engineering, but right out of college, I was a manufacturing engineer, worked with assembly lines, however I wanted to do something more innovative and eventually switched to software engineering.

How did you transition from mechanical engineering to software engineering?

I applied to a bunch of entry level software engineering jobs, but I got rejected from them because I did not have enough technical training. This led me to attend the flatiron school in New York to learn more skills and gain more technical training. This really aided my transition from mechanical to software engineering.

What was the reason behind changing your initial concentration of civil engineering and architecture into manufacturing and eventually software?

Prior to college, I did not know the difference between Civil engineering and Architecture until I experienced it firsthand. Civil engineering is more of the guts of building, like how strong the soil is for the foundation and what type of metal should be used. Meanwhile, Architecture is more on the creative sign and brainstorming design, but after taking the courses, I realized I was not very interested in either. I ended up transitioning to a manufacturing engineer after college.

What skills have you found vital to your job?

Communication is key, if you can't share your ideas with your coworkers it gets difficult to implement them. By earning their trust and building a relationship with your coworkers, they are more likely to go out of their way to help you when needed, which is also very important.

What is your favorite part about your career (current or past)?

It is more innovative, and I love knowing that I had an impact on daily items and something I helped to create is used by millions of people.

Was there a career setback you faced which you later realized was an advantage?

Before I went to the flatiron school, I was getting rejected from companies left and right. Then, I got one offer to be a designer at an ad agency. I was excited because it was in New