How did you become a programmer?
Iza Kartowicz – Stolarska: I’ve always wanted to do something creative in life, so I decided to study Computer Science at the University of Technology. While I was studying I got my first job as a graphic designer 😉 and then I developed an interest in web applications. After graduation I joined the team of programmers at o2.pl.
You are a lecturer at Bialystok University of Technology in the department of Computer Science, do you think that IT will become more and more popular in the future?
Iza K.S: Yes, I believe that more and more people will be studying Computer Science, taking especially all the postgraduate courses. IT has lately provided new workplaces, most prominently in the positions of the social media specialist, data scientist and machine learning developer. The Faculty of Computer Science follows up the trends and adapts the syllabus to cover market requirements.
Are there more girls in computer science now?
Iza K.S: At the start of my education, Computer Science was a very trendy and prestigious faculty. There were many girls in my group. Women made up around 30% of all the students. Over the last 10 years this number has varied around this ratio. You need to know there are many women in IT. Most of them work as project managers, testers, graphic designers, scientists and programmers. I think the percentage of women in IT will not increase in the near future, but they will be more active in the community and at the conferences.
What advice would you give them before starting a job in IT?
Iza K.S: My piece of advice would be the same, regardless of gender. Programming is not only conferences and a satisfying salary 😉 – the work is challenging. You have to keep up to date with the most recent technologies and trends. Write the code, join the Open Source community, read articles of experts in the field and keep the work-life balance.
What was the most interesting project you have participated in?
Iza K.S: All the projects I’ve worked on were very interesting. I can’t choose just one. In o2.pl I worked on projects where the most important things were high scalability and performance. In my current position the most essential thing is transaction reliability. Each project required a different set of technical skills and knowledge.
Is python your programming language of choice?
Iza K.S: Yes, it is 🙂 I started using it while studying at the university. It wasn’t a very popular programming language in Poland back then but some of the biggest companies (like o2.pl) began to use it instead of PHP.
What does your day look like?
Iza K.S: It’s very mixed 🙂 I work at the Uni and at TJ.Software so I need to split my time between the two workplaces. In TJ.Software’s office the outline is usually as follows: I prepare a list of the most important tasks for a given day and the day after it. Sometimes it’s software development, other times – team management. I think that the work-life balance is very important so I restrain myself from working on the weekends – it’s time for relaxing, my family and hobbies 🙂