08:45 | 26.02.19 | Girls in Tech | exclusive 36466
We pictured exclusively a man when saying “IT specialist in Armenia” a few years ago, but the success of Armenian technological products on international markets and numerous projects promoting startups development made the industry more attractive for women as well in recent times.
Whether it’s writing code, developing products or making other contribution to the team, the opportunities are numerous.
Itel.am presents Armenian women engaged in IT industry in the “Girls in Tech” series.
Yeva Hyusyan is a co-founder of SoloLearn, the biggest mobile platform for learning programming, and former Head of Microsoft Armenia and Microsoft Innovation Center.
I learn to code at SoloLearn
We founded Microsoft Innovation Center in 2010, and it was hard to imagine at that moment what it would be doing. It was an entertaining experience for us to build the Center from the ground, you could say it was our first startup.
We created the first startup accelerator in Armenia after testing several models. I founded SoloLearn in 2014, almost the same time I moved to Microsoft Armenia. It was an infinitely interesting experience, but the world of startups was far more attractive. I left Microsoft Armenia last November.
I’m a co-founder at SoloLearn, I focus on business and product development more, as well as on establishing ties with investors.
I learn to code at SoloLearn. I cannot say I do it professionally, but I have complete understanding of the logic of coding.
Coding will become a necessary skill in the near future
I believe that coding will soon become a necessary skill for everyone, regardless of profession. It’s a certain mindset, it helps become more productive and do some tasks faster. It will be a necessary condition of getting a job a few years later. People lose lots of time organizing certain processes now, and no own knows your routine better than you, so minimal skills in coding become necessary to optimize your work and organize it more effectively.
Working in IT is trendy and fashionable
People from IT are really different. There’s a notion that people “gave a side eye” to programmers 10 years ago, but now working in IT in Armenia is trendy and fashionable. The world today is ruled by people who are fluent in technologies. So, if each of us understands at least the basics of technologies, we’ll be able to have more control over our lives and the development of technologies.
Fewer women in IT is even an advantage
There are many, many female programmers in Armenia, we even exceed certain developed countries in this regard.
Women are less inclined to risk, and startup itself is a risky business.
I don’t think women are oppressed in our country and deprived of reaching goals. Their number will certainly rise alongside with success stories. On the one hand, we are a bit risky, on the other - stress-resistant.
It only appears that if you wear jeans and have laptop with you all the time, that’s it. I’ve worked in various working environment in my life, but working on my own startup is something different. You cannot stop thinking about it for 24 hours.
Women are treated very well in this field, I have never felt bad. On the contrary, people are helping more readily. The fact that there are fewer women in this field even helps in this context (edit. laughs).
Technological trends as working tools
The nature of my work is such that SoloLearn is present on every platform. I don’t view a gadget’s newest version as trend. We have the latest technologies at our company, as they are our working tools.
It’s possible that I’ll find 4 phones in my purse (edit. laughs). Sometimes I get tired and leave them somewhere for a period of time. I don’t have any special connection with any brand or gadget as I know both good and bad sides of them.
You have to be in trend all the time
This field and particularly startup life is different, as you have a lot of things to learn. You have to be in trend all the time, you have to read and try new things.
IT is a field where every profession has its manifestation. If you are doing something you enjoy, the possibility of success is very high.
Making changes in the world is impossible without technologies, whether we are talking about agriculture, education or state security.
Armenia has technological success stories today, and you can follow them and reach for the better. We are not far behind the global technological life.
Photos by Mariam Loretsyan