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General Chat Thread, Ladies - What Route did any of you take to get into IT? in General; I when to Uni to read Chemistry, dropped out after 2 years, married and had 2 kids. I started work ...
  1. #31
    clareq's Avatar
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    I when to Uni to read Chemistry, dropped out after 2 years, married and had 2 kids. I started work as a Classroom Assistant, first on a voluntary basis and then paid, when my youngest started school. I did that for a few years and got our first home PC. My stubborn nature meant that when it broke I was determined to fix it myself - I wasn't paying to get it fixed if I could do it, and I was hooked. I then got a job as an ICT classroom assistant and took on more and more techie jobs until I became System Manager.

  2. #32
    Gibson335's Avatar
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    In my 11 years here, we have have advertised for technicians on numerous occasions and in all that time I have received just a single application from a female.

    Does my reputation as an ageing lothario precede me, I wonder ;-)

  3. #33
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    Total fluke - got sacked as a receptionist at a fork lift truck service company (hot engineers!!) due to personality clashes (PMT between me and boss!!) and desperately needed a job to pay the loan on my first car. Got two interviews, one sales, one basic follow a script and tell someone how to install a printer over the phone at an IT call centre - Dad said IT is the future - literally begged for the call centre job and got it 14 years ago. My last job was NM at a secondary school for 3 years, and again NM 2 years at another secondary previous to that. My only qualification is an MCP in 95! Found schools tight on the old training budget and couldn't fund any myself,but I've done well none the less.

  4. #34

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    I was interested in computers from early on and taught myself programming in the back of a high street computer repair shop. There was no O level in computing way back then but did A levels in Maths, Further maths and Physics followed by a Mechanical engineering degree. Worked in R & D in various places for 10 years. After 1st child got chance to program and wrote Retail Management software for some of the London Museums. After 7 years and second child was asked to join local school as Learning support assistant and gradually did more and more IT until that became my job. Have now been there 10 years, no formal qualifications, just self taught.

  5. #35

    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elsiegee40 View Post
    I agree with witch... she, chrrb and I probably don't count due to our antiquity!

    However, in the early, 80s I did Maths, Further Maths and Physics at A'Level and then went to uni to study Accountancy and Economics, studying Computing as a third subject in my first year. Lancaster has a system whereby all first year subjects are equally weigted and at the end of the first year my marks reflected my interests; I graduated in Computing with a minor in Economics!

    I went on to a be a graduate trainee programmer (Mainframe PL/1, DB2, CICS) with London Electricity Board. Left after 18 months and became a Junior Programmer with a large insurance company. After about 3 years programming and promotion I moved to Technical Support as a DBA and the rest is history!
    Quote Originally Posted by LisaW View Post
    I was interested in computers from early on and taught myself programming in the back of a high street computer repair shop. There was no O level in computing way back then but did A levels in Maths, Further maths and Physics followed by a Mechanical engineering degree. Worked in R & D in various places for 10 years. After 1st child got chance to program and wrote Retail Management software for some of the London Museums. After 7 years and second child was asked to join local school as Learning support assistant and gradually did more and more IT until that became my job. Have now been there 10 years, no formal qualifications, just self taught.
    ...and LisaW has more or less given that history

    Are we related?

  6. #36
    GNewnham's Avatar
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    Anybody remember these?



    Well, that's how long!

    Started as a programmer in the early 80's (Cobol, Fortran on punch cards for an oil company), then moved on up to systems analysis, design, project management etc etc mainly for insurance companies. 4 babies came along and kept me busy for a while and then ended up working part time (!) at a school managing the MIS, intranet.

    Now where did I put my teeth and my zimmer frame?

  7. #37

    witch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GNewnham View Post
    Now where did I put my teeth and my zimmer frame?
    sorry, my memory isnt quite what it was.....what's a zimmer frame?

  8. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by GNewnham View Post
    Anybody remember these?

    http://www.maximumpc.com/files/u69/IBM_Punch_Card.png

    Well, that's how long!
    I remember the cards but have long forgotten the Fortran IV that went with them

  9. #39

    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GNewnham View Post
    Did my degree on 'em The insurance company I worked for used them for output until the mid '90s. Apparently the brokers liked them because they were in different colours according to the currency of the transaction. Sterling was white, USD Blue and Pink (forgotten what currency that was). When we finally got rid of our card punches, one went to the Science Museum and the others went to our failsafe company who had two other clients still using cards!

  10. #40

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    I'm a bloke, but interesting to read the routes the ladies have taken! I'm a non-uni techie. Always had an interest (being Autistic helped!). Finished with good A-Levels including the best IT grade (Double-Award AB grade in Vocational IT) and then went down the apprenticeship route (wouldn't ever recommend it though!). Blasted through 6 months of the Level 2 NVQ in IT Practitioner course while earning £80/week at the school I'm still working at now. Promoted twice up to Network & Systems Administrator role and still here 5 years down the line.

    Almost completed my Cisco CCNA course now and looking to move on into commercial/and/or the City. Have no MCSEs/MCSAs. Might have to just do the exams to get them on my CV if interviews don't come by .

    We need more ladies in IT for definite!

  11. #41

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    Did A levels in Maths, Further Maths, Economics and Computer Science - ours was the first year to study Computer Science at our school. Then got a job as a computer operator for an insurance broker - Mainframe, CICS, TSO and I remember those punch cards!

    Many years later after doing various jobs at the same company, including systems programmer for several years, the mainframe was finally outsourced although they still haven't stopped using it yet.

    I have now been an IT Technician in a high school for 3.5 years. Have learnt loads in that time but still miss the mainframe on occasions.

  12. #42

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    Resurrecting a thread ... could folk who have contributed here also add something to Jobs for the Girls: Encouraging girls to consider qualifications and careers in IT ?

    Many thanks

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