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Women in tech: Amy, Jessica, and Lola

Read about some of our female users and how they're shaping technology for their goals. Read more...

The tech industry is sometimes seen as a stereotypically male environment, but more and more women are shattering preconceived notions and redefining what it truly means to be in tech. Every day, women are using technology to fulfill dreams, create jobs, and pursue any and every what if?

Recognizing these gains is important, and the women below work in different industries and on different projects. Amy, Jessica, and Lola told us how they use email, how they became interested in their pursuits and – of course – which resources they’d share with women who are looking to follow in their footsteps.

Could you give me a little information about yourself and the projects you work on?

Amy: My name is Amy Dutton, and I’m a Senior UI / UX and Frontend Developer at ZEAL. My company does custom software development, primarily in Rails and JavaScript.

Jessica: My name is Jessica Bishop, and I’m the founder of TheBudgetSavvyBride.com and author of The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer. The Budget Savvy Bride provides resources, inspiration, advice, and tools to help couples plan a beautiful wedding on a budget they can actually afford!

Lola: My name is Lola Akinmade Åkerström, and I’m the co-founder of Local Purse. At Local Purse, we provide you with cultural live video shopping experiences. You get to meet guides around the world and shop from local artisans preserving beautiful traditions.

Those all sound awesome. I want to know more about how they began. When did you first become interested in your career path or current role?

Amy: I first became interested in coding when I was in middle school. My class went on a weeklong trip that I wasn’t able to attend. Instead, I sat in the computer lab all week and created my first website in Netscape Navigator tools.

Jessica: I started The Budget Savvy Bride when I was planning my own wedding and I was frustrated that the majority of resources seemed to cater specifically to a high-end audience. I decided to start my website by sharing all the ideas and inspiration I had found throughout my wedding planning journey as a way to help other couples plan a beautiful wedding on a budget. I started on a free Wordpress site, and I eventually moved to a custom domain and self-hosted site – but I still use Wordpress to this day.

Lola: We decided to launch Local Purse as a response to the effects of the pandemic on some of the most vulnerable parts of the travel industry. You can read more about our purpose and why we started here

Could you tell me a little bit about how you’ve used Mailgun in your projects?

Amy: Most of the projects I’ve used Mailgun for involve sending email from WordPress or for a custom web application. Mailgun handles all the outgoing email. It’s also been useful for tracking. If someone didn’t receive an email, I’m able to tell where the breakdown was. 

Jessica: Currently, we use Mailgun to deliver emails from our website system to our site visitors at The Budget Savvy Bride. We've used it mostly for basic site emails so far, but we’re currently working toward a new system of automated email delivery for digital products on our website, which is really exciting!

Lola: We currently use Mailgun to manage our email notifications and message forwarding.

Generally speaking, what does email mean to your business?

Amy: Email is essential when it comes to building a web application. It serves as one of the chief communication tools for things like resetting passwords, alerts, notifications, and messaging. The software we create would not function properly without it.

Jessica: Email is a super important connection to our audience, and it ensures we can deliver valuable resources, tools, and information to them. It also allows for feedback and communication, which is essential no matter what your business is!

Lola: Email means getting one step closer to our customers in a more intimate and personal way, because the bedrock of our business is to foster cultural connection within this digital space.

Finally, we have a question for the women and girls who may be reading this interview. Do you have any resources/communities/advice that you would suggest for any women interested in pursuing a career like yours?

Amy: I’ve heard great things about Girls Who Code and Girl Code It. My advice for anyone interested in learning how to code or pursuing a career as a developer: don’t give up! Just because you don’t understand a concept the first time, doesn’t say anything about you or your intelligence or your ability to grasp the content. All it means is that that explanation didn’t click. Keep digging. Keep researching. Keep Googling. Eventually, you’ll find someone that explains it in just the right way, that makes sense to you.

Jessica: Over the last few years, some great resources have emerged to help women in entrepreneurship. I'm a member of the Female Founder Collective, and regularly browse resources on Elpha

Lola: There are lots of resources - such as joining sites like Thehub.io and Women in Tech Sweden - and within our travel industry, communities such as Wanderful and Women In Travel CIC are invaluable resources. 

Conclusion

With great opportunity comes great success, and Amy, Jessica, and Lola have used their skills and curiosity to develop successful (and pretty cool) projects they believe in, and we’re proud they’ve chosen us for their email needs. They’re redefining the tech industry, and they’re encouraging others to do the same and embrace that next big what if?

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