PyConES 2015: DjangoGirls workshop

Last november 20th in Valencia, an amazing DjangoGirls took place. It was the first day of PyConES and I don’t think it could have started better.

After three months of organization, all students and coaches were finally meeting in person at the UPV early in the morning expecting a great day.

All our expectations were clearly surpassed :)

We had 20 students and 9 coaches. The past week each team had a teleconference to prepare the installation, so we weren’t complete strangers. The room were decorated with balloons and confetti, which made the environment welcoming and funny. This was very important to make everyone confortable with the workshop and their partners during the day.

After presentations we started working in groups, following the tutorial, and soon we were hearing all the brains. Students were focused from the very beginning and coaches were helping whenever they (we!) were needed. Suddenly, the 2 first hours had passed and we had our first coffee break. It’s wonderful the effect of a coffee and some pastries: all students and coaches were gladly talking about programming, about being a programmer, and about new ideas arising.

The workshop continued in the best mood all the day. After the lunch Angela presented Arandomtable, a platform that she built in Django, which breaks lots of stereotypes and has a special care with gender issues.

For me, questions of beginners give me an important insight about learning process. Everytime a beginner doesn’t understand something, I easily find assumptions in the tutorial, something that should have been explained better. This is very helpful for me in my own learning process: when I don’t understand a tutorial, I start looking for the assumptions that will lead me to a better understanding. The conclusion is simple: to learn more and better, I just need to stay in front of the new topic as a beginner.

Almost without noticing, we were at the end of the day, tired but visibly happy. All the students reached an important milestone of the tutorial: deploying in PythonAnywhere. They got their first blog in production, and it was clear to me that it wouldn’t be the last.

The next day started the talks at PyConES, and students and coaches were in the different rooms, continued learning and knowing new people. I must say that in this PyConES we had an amazing hall, which allowed people gathering and talking to each other: most of students were new to the Python community and they felt welcome. Thanks to all pythonistas :)

Finally, I would like to thank all the people that gave their time and effort to make it possible, and specially to the sponsors, which were all very generous: we had the welcome pack, great catering, the tickets for PyConES and some grants for students which came from other places. This workshop is not about ROI, but about community and diversity. So every sponsor that helped us with the workshop were giving a step forward to improve diversity. You really rock.

To sum up: it was a success. After all our effort, during that day the students learnt, the coaches taught and all of us got a big boost in our motivation. This makes DjangoGirls an amazing initiative.

I hope to see all of you in PyLand and DjangoLand <3.

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