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Interview With Diana Balderas

Hello everyone! Today im doing an interview with a amazing young girl in stem Diana! And im really so proud of what she accomplishe at this age. So lets get to know her better! You can find her social adress at the end of the interview 🙂

1) Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am nineteen years old, currently a sophomore at Bakersfield College, studying Computer Science. I will transfer to a 4-year university next year to obtain my bachelor’s degree. I am originally from South Central Los Angeles.

2) How did it all start for you?

My love for Computer Science and overall technology began when I took a technology class back in 9th grade. I started with animation using JavaScript to make graphics and convert them into an animated scene. One of my projects was noticed by the founder of Khan Academy. That is where everything started and onwards.

3) How did you get in #kodewithklossy? Any tips?

I was accepted to Kode With Klossy by making a fun and creative video for my submission application. One thing to know for the young women out there who are interested in applying is just to tell your story and be authentic.

KWK Submission Video: https://youtu.be/gQeNNYjPVYo

4) What did you learn in #kodewithklossy?

I learned to not be afraid to ask questions and build my confidence. Also, web development was important to utilize throughout the program, which I was a fast learner with it since I taught myself HTML & CSS way before Kode With Klossy.

5) Could you tell us a Google Cssi program? How did you become a mentor?

Google CSSI (Computer Science Summer Institute) program is for incoming freshmen college students. There are two options: on campus at Google Headquarters or online using Coursera. Either one teaches a student the same courses and skills. I was part of the Coursera team last summer as a student, which is a platform similar to KhanAcademy that offers learning courses from Python to Web Development. Therefore, I became a mentor this year because I was reached out by the person who runs the CSSI programs every year. Also, I was one of the top students who finished the program beforehand for the reason why I had given this opportunity.

6)Could you tell us your projects?

I am currently running Nebala, an organization where I create and design my stickers to sell to the public. The funding goes to an app I am currently making called HerPocket. HerPocket was part of the Technovation Challenge, (a challenge for young girls around the world to create project and ideas for a world) a year ago which it was placed as semi-finalist idea.

Nebala: https://nebala.bigcartel.com

7) How do you keep yourself motivated?

I keep myself motivated by the family, mentors. and organization who have and are still supporting my ideas and success. Without them, I would not be the person I am today.

8) Could you tell us how is your regular day looks like?

A regular day for me is being on the computer until late at night around 11 pm. However, I do take 10 – 15 minutes every hour. Most importantly, at 8 pm I have to take my dog for a walk. I like to complete my tasks in advance before the due date.

9) What are you doing in your job at BHC? What projects you are involved in? Can you tell us about it? ☺

I am a software engineer at Building Healthy Communities, a nonprofit organization. My team and I build websites and apps for the community. We currently launched our first app on Google Play, a way for people to connect and interact with each other.

10) What do you like most about your life?

I love helping students and people out. I like to inspire the community and give advice.

11) Where do you see yourself after ten years and what do you want to achieve in ten years?

I see myself a motivating female figure and giving back to the community who has helped me with my endowments.

12)What is your favorite thing to do for your self-care?

Spoiling myself with food 🙂

13)How do you keep yourself calm after a long and bad day? What is your advice on this?

I keep myself calm by listening to music and drinking water. This is what helps me get through a hard-working day. A piece of advice to the community is to find an activity that makes you space out from reality like reading a book, drawing, or going outside.

14) Which path do you suggest to the engineering students wants to be successful?

Focus on the opportunities that are given to you and join a support system, but one must highly take advantage of them. Whether is a scholarship, summer program, or a tech event.

15)Which movies/tv-series/podcasts/books etc. you recommend for the girls in STEM?

I would recommend Good Trouble (tv-series), which is about a young woman fresh out college looking to fit into a community where there is mostly men. Even though she is a software engineer and has accomplished many things, she is not seen as equal and supported by those around her.  She finds a way to stand out and have the opportunity to share her ideas.

 Extra: I currently got accepted to a mentorship program called Latinas Engineer Leadership to help Latina college students with their resume, college courses, and secure a summer internship.

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