By Andrea Monzon, AWS Ambassador and Cloud Developer – Myappsoftware-Criptonube
Since I was a kid, I’ve always loved to learn and I’ve always been perseverant. I got easily frustrated when something had to work and it didn’t.
In school, my favorite classes were math and physics, so when graduation was around the corner, I knew I wanted to be an engineer, and the doubt was in deciding the field. The university that I wanted to attend had an Expo, where future students could get a campus tour, participate in activities, visit the labs, and talk with professors and students.
My brother came with me to this Expo, and after a couple hours in the campus we came across the labs that were used by Electronics and Mechatronics students. It was the moment when I decided to study Mechatronics Engineering—I wanted to be a part of that world. But my first thoughts were “Am I good enough?” and “What if I can’t do it?” When I told my brother what I was thinking, he told me that fearing failure wasn’t a good reason for not doing something. He told me that everyone has a fear of failing, and if I wanted to then I should do it. And … I did it.
It was a great experience, but it was also hard. At that time, we were only 10 women out of 50 people, so we were a minor group. Programming was my first big challenge, as my school didn’t have classes on the matter so I didn’t know how to do it. It was a bit of “learning on the road,” and now programming is one of the main things I do on my job. I learned a lot here, not only thanks to the lectures and classes, but also thanks to the people around me, especially the smart and strong women I met that I have the privilege to call friends.
Then work came, and another set of challenges came with it. My first work was at a local startup as a software tester. That lasted a couple of months, but I learned a lot, too, as I had zero experience in testing. Then I got a job in the company I work for until this day. When I started, I didn’t have experience on AWS, but here you are always encouraged to study, to practice, and experiment. That’s how I work today, giving solutions to our clients with different services, developing products that we use internally, teaching others how services work and what they can do with them, and also studying and practicing as things move and grow very fast.
In my team, I’m the only woman but I have been fortunate enough to study and work in places where I’m treated as an equal, where my ideas are heard. That isn’t the case for others. Women face daily challenges just for the fact of being women. And that shouldn’t happen. Gender shouldn’t decide if you are worthy of being heard or not, if you are smart enough to participate or not. Your value as a person shouldn’t be decided by that.
Even being the only woman in my team, I had opportunities to work with other women in different projects, and I have absolutely loved it! Seeing what we can do together is always amazing, and learning from them, their experience, and knowledge, has been wonderful.
There’s a lot to do, a lot of bias to break. Stopping with the “She can’t do this or that,” which limits what we can accomplish or not. The “You can’t like this, or work on this, or study this because you are a girl.” Because that’s a lie. We can accomplish anything we set our minds to. I dream about a world free of stereotypes, where everybody is valued and celebrated, and I will keep working for it every single day.
Breaking the bias means to work hard and fight the little voice in my head that tells me to speak low when I’m sure that what I’m saying is right. I dream about a world free of stereotypes and discrimination, so I work for it to become a reality.
I’ve been lucky enough to work in places where my ideas are respected, but I also know that my individual experience doesn’t represent a collective one. Women face daily challenges just for the fact of being women, so that has taught me to not to be quiet, to celebrate other women I’ve had the pleasure to work with, because we are stronger together.
There’s a lot men can do. They can stop making assumptions about their colleagues, they can speak about any salary gaps (because women usually get paid less for doing the exact same job), they can point out any bad treatment a teammate is getting just for her gender. We must keep fighting, making the path easier to walk for the next generations.
Andrea Monzon is a Mechatronics Engineer who graduated from Universidad del Valle de Guatemala. She holds three AWS Certifications and since 2917 has been working as a Cloud Developer at Myappsoftware, an AWS Advanced Tier Services Partner that provides IT solutions and builds applications for customers.
Andrea started with literally zero knowledge about cloud and is now really passionate about it. She tries to expand that knowledge to others around her while still learning every day by working on new projects and keeping up with the development of cloud technologies.
Here are some blogs posts written by Andrea:
- Traducción automática de texto con Amazon Translate – Myappsoftware
- Preparación de datos con AWS Glue DataBrew – Myappsoftware
International Women’s Day and #BreakTheBias
International Women’s Day (March 8) celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for celebrating women’s achievements, raising awareness against gender bias, and accelerating gender equity.
The International Women’s Day theme for 2022 is #BreakTheBias. This theme acknowledges that gender biases, discrimination, and stereotypes exist, and provides an opportunity to be part of a movement that promotes a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture both individually and collectively as an organization.
Amazon is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and the company’s diverse perspectives come from many sources including gender, age, race, national origin, sexual orientation, culture, and education, as well as professional and life experiences. As we celebrate IWD in 2022, the AWS Partner Network (APN) is honored to share perspectives from female technical leaders from our global AWS Partner Ambassadors community.
This blog series highlights six trailblazing women who have shared their personal stories of how they overcame challenges, stereotypes, and barriers in their careers, who inspires them to #BreakTheBias every day, and valuable advice on developing a career in technology.
AWS Ambassador Partner Program
The AWS Ambassador Partner Program features a vibrant worldwide community of technical experts, known as AWS Ambassadors, from our services and software partners.
If you’re an employee of an AWS Partner, hold multiple AWS Certifications, and contribute to the AWS community through public presentations, open source projects, social media, and more, see if you qualify for the AWS Ambassador program. If you’re an AWS customer and want to contact an AWS Ambassador, we’ve listed each Ambassador on the AWS website so you can connect with them through their employer.
AWS Partner Solutions Architect Angelica Ortega contributed to this story.