Mónica Fidalgo, Frontend Developer

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Early years and where you came from?

I studied marine biology at the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon and years later I decided to change fields. I looked for something that I also liked and found the web design course at the Lisbon School of Design. I loved the final part of the course, in which we had to develop our website and since then I haven’t stopped.

How were you introduced to the world of the Portuguese tech industry?

After finishing the course I started looking for a job and everything was unfolding as it was getting and absorbing more knowledge in the area.

Walk me through your work and what you are doing now in the tech industry.

I am currently a Frontend developer in a Dutch company, I work at their Lisbon office. I have gone through several projects and in each new project, I learned a new technology, which contributed a lot to my professional development. I also have a taste for the UX area and whenever I can, I take this into consideration when I have to build a new feature.

What part of what you do, you love the most?

I’m crazy about outdoor activities. I love the sea and whenever the opportunity arises, I love to do nature-related activities, walking along the beach, scuba diving, hiking, or canoeing. Another passion of mine is animals, I have been volunteering for several years in a dog shelter near where I live and it is something I can no longer live without.

How do you think that your background and knowledge impact the way you approach your work in the Portuguese tech industry?

As you know, I studied Biology, a completely different area. I felt that I was way behind my colleagues, so I studied hard at home and most importantly, I believed in myself to get where I'm now. This big change helps me nowadays to have an out of the box way of thinking what is essential in this field.

What advice do you have for young women that want to get into tech and don’t know where to start?

If you have a dream, work for it every day, don’t be afraid of giving a step back sometimes to take TWO steps forward. Go to events, meet new people, attend meetings. Ask for advice. I mean, Networking is King.

Walk me through a day in your life as a Portuguese women in tech.

First…coffee! :) I spend most of the day debugging and occasionally when bugs let me, I manage to build a new feature! My company reinforces our personal development, allowing us to study new technologies in order to be always up to date. I never know what’s going to happen. Every day is a new challenge.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t impose limitations on yourself. Self-imposed limitations are shackles that hold us down and prevent us from achieving our potential.

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

I can´t live without Spotify, Codepen and Figma. I love what I do and having those tools as a playground for my ideas is amazing while listening to good music.

Anything else you want to share?

This article: The Coding Mermaid — How I Went from Marine Biologist to Front End Developer

👉Find Mónica on LinkedIn

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A portrait of the women that help make the difference in the Portuguese Tech Industry. Check our speaker's list: http://bitly.com/pwitList

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