Computers and programming has been a huge part of my life, starting from when my father taught me how to build my own PC when I was 11 years old. Since then I was hooked and it was inevitable that I enrolled to do Computer Science at Southampton University. It’s a very technical course and considered by many to be the most scientific way to learn programming and understand the technology that underpins development.
The syllabus looks at hardware and software together, which gave me exactly the breadth of knowledge that QinetiQ was looking for when it was scouting out graduates. I worked with them on MoD projects, investigating and prototyping innovative ways to use technology and gaming for the defence industry, but I then took a bit of a left-field turn: I signed up to study cookery.
I qualified as a Cordon Bleu chef and worked at a pub chain’s head office, developing their menus. It was fun – and interesting – but ultimately, it wasn’t for me. I decided I missed the technology industry and the intellectual challenges it constantly presents, which is how I landed at The Creative Engine.
I’m really proud of having broken into the food industry though. It was a definite risk but I relished testing this new environment that was so closed off to me before. That’s something I feel I bring to each new project. I’ll look at it from every angle until I can see which result best suits the client’s needs, even if it’s neither the easiest nor the simplest option.
So, why did I pick The Creative Engine when I came back to tech? Mostly it’s down to the programming languages we use and the calibre of clients with which we work. When someone asks me what I do and who I work for, I can say with a sense of accomplishment that I’m writing software for Google Nest. That’s something I missed when I was working with food.
There’s life beyond the office, of course, and outside of hours I spend a lot of time – most of my time – with my puppy. It’s a ball of excited energy that gets me and my husband out most weekends exploring the commons and fields where we live.