What kind of skills are needed to do your role?
The main skills that I exercise daily are communication, organisation, and empathy. Of course, I have to know a lot about technology, but for me, technical knowledge comes second to strong soft skills. My main approach is to know a little bit about a lot; rather than focusing on one niche, I actively take a broad interest in general creative computing so that I can cover anything from game design to machine learning.
I haven’t done any specific training (yet) but I did a lot of freelance ‘teaching’ before I got my formal roles in education. I am a self-taught technologist which is why I am passionate about open-source tools and community-focused education.
What was your journey like when you were first starting out?
I found my feet quickly. I came to London to be creative, and although it had its issues, UAL was the perfect place for me. I was teaching at university level during the second year of my BA, and then opportunities snowballed for me! I put myself out there and networked a lot.
Speaking at one place got me a workshop opportunity in another and so on. Although I am proud of my success, I don’t feel like I had a choice. Coming to London was make-or-break for me, and I think that drove me to grab all of the opportunities. I also don’t want to enforce the narrative of ‘hard work pays off’ – being kind to yourself and taking breaks is important too! Also, due to institutionalised racism and patriarchy, unfortunately, not all ‘hard work’ is received the same.