The Unicorn Engineer β€” Issue #1

In this newsletter, I’ll share personal and career learnings, advice, collaboration opportunities, and more. πŸ“¨

Hola! πŸ‘‹πŸ½

If you’re receiving this, you’ve opted into receiving emails from me at one point. πŸ“¨

This is the first time I’ve emailed something out in a very long time, so if you’re wondering who the heck I am, I get that! πŸ™ˆ

This newsletter will come no more than once a month and will primarily focus on what I’m most passionate about these days outside of work β€” elevating and supporting Latinx in tech, employee resource groups, and apprenticeship programs. πŸš€

The name “The Unicorn Engineer” comes from the phrase “unicorn,” which is used to describe the statistical anomaly of a startup reaching a $1B valuation. I felt similarly as a Latina working as a software engineer at Slack at the time that I first coined myself “a unicorn working for another unicorn” for a talk at JSConf EU in 2019. Plus, it’s catchy! πŸ¦„

I’ll also likely throw in some personal and career learnings as well. πŸŽ“

Who am I?

  • Aspiring Software Engineering LeaderπŸ‘©πŸ½β€πŸ’»
  • Peruvian-American πŸ‡΅πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ
  • Fierce Advocate for Diversity in Tech πŸ’›
  • Corgi Mom 🐾

In more words… I’m currently a senior software engineer at this tiny startup called Byteboard. We’re trying to create an alternative to the traditional data structure and algorithm (DSA) interview that software engineers have to grind for.

I previously worked for roughly four years as a software engineer specializing in UI development and lead generation on the Customer Acquisition Team at Slack.

I also served on the leadership team of Techqueria during the same time. Techqueria is a nonprofit serving the largest community of Latinx professionals in tech.

I have been working professionally as a developer since 2015 and hold a Bachelor’s in Computer Science from Hampton University and a Master’s in Computer Science from Cornell Tech.

I currently reside in Inglewood with my partner and two Corgis, Luna & SueΓ±o.

Celebrating Latinx Heritage Month! πŸ’ƒπŸ½

I’d love to collaborate with others during this amazing month as I have plans to share resources and host events on different topics.

Schedule

  • 9/20 – Sharing resources for Latinx K-12 students interested in tech
  • 9/22 – Sharing resources for Latinx college students majoring in computer science
  • 9/26 – Sharing a list of Latinx influencers in tech you should follow on LinkedIn
  • 9/27 – Sharing resources for Latinx trying to break into tech through
  • 9/28 – LinkedIn Live event on Raising Your Visibility with Mary Despe
  • 9/29 – Sharing resources for Latinx in tech professionals in the workplace
  • 10/3 – Sharing resources for Latina software engineers
  • 10/5 – LinkedIn Live event on Software Engineer Career Advice with Melisa Im
  • 10/6 – Sharing resources for Latinx ERG leaders
  • 10/10 – Celebrating Indigenous People’s Day
  • 10/11 – Sharing resources for Latinx interested in VC
  • 10/13 – Sharing resources for Latinx interested in entrepreneurship

Ways you can get involved

(1) Discuss your experience on one of these topics via a LinkedIn Live event and take questions from the audience as well (recorded live stream)

(2) Share resources related to any of the relevant topics above (I will be giving a shout-out to folks who share resources in the posts)

I have a subscription to Canva Pro and Riverside.FM, so I’ll be able to create high-quality content! If you’re interested or know someone who would be a great fit, DM me or reply to this email. πŸŽ‰

What I’ve Been Working On (Outside of Work) πŸ› οΈ

(1) Published my thoughts on a value framework for open source maintainers as a GitHub Guide

Regardless of whether you have 3 or 3,000 contributors, empowering others is an essential part of open source, says @FrancesCoronel. Get her advice on how to optimize collaboration:

github.com

(2) Created a Twitter list of Latinas who code for a living β€” DM me on Twitter if you’re interested in being added

Need more Latina software engineers in my life so being the change I want to see πŸ’›

twitter.com

(3) Formed an LLC for my freelancing gigs

I’ve been freelancing since 2015 and am excited to share that I’m registering an LLC! πŸŽ‰ I’m working on several projects where it will be helpful to have an…

www.linkedin.com

Latest Byte Sized Learnings πŸŽ“

  • Design systems are great, and it’s never too early to get started using them, even if your engineering team is smaller than 5 people πŸ–Œ
  • Selling an old car via a company like Bidlane is the easy option and is worth it since you’re avoiding all the hassle of selling a car πŸ’Έ
  • If you have a very Type A personality, taking care of dogs can help make you more chill and simultaneously be a fun way to destress 🐾
  • I made the switch to WordPress a few years ago after having my website be a labor of open source love on GitHub for years, and upon reflection, maintaining my website used to be such a time suck, and I’m so grateful it’s easier now 😌
  • How communication is done from the top (leadership) is essential to establishing a healthy work culture πŸ’¬

Free Mentorship Calls πŸ“ž

I’m temporarily offering 30-minute mentor sessions for free until October 15th.

In the past, I would charge money for these, but I’m eager to talk with more people aligned with my passion projects.

If you are an ERG leader, I’d especially love to hear from you as I plan to reach out to ERG leads for paid user interviews.

You can book a call using the link below. πŸ‘‡πŸ½οΈ

[LINK NOW REMOVED]

That’s it!

That wraps up my first issue.

Again, don’t hesitate to reach out to collaborate on resources and events for Latinx Heritage Month.

And finally, I’m always open to feedback and suggestions on content as I get this little newsletter ramped up.

Thanks for reading! πŸ’›


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Last updated on November 21st, 2022