Our instructor Cece Claridge coined a letter for her students at our first ever all-women cohort which just completed 10 weeks of web development training. It gave us chills when she read it at their Pitch Night, so we figured we’d share it with the rest of the Wynfam.

“Good evening everyone. My name is Cece Claridge, and for the last ten weeks it has been an honor and a privilege to serve as the head instructor for the wyncode academy and career source south Florida women in tech program.I want to start by giving thanks to the organizations and people that made this night possible.*

First and foremost, thank you to Career Source South Florida, the YWCA, and Wyncode Academy.

The media is full of statistics about women in the world of tech. I won’t bother going into them here, because I am proud to serve alongside organizations that aren’t just reporting on this injustice, they are taking action and devoting resources to correcting it.

Thank you for your vision.

Thank you to the incredible instructional staff that I have been blessed to work alongside this summer. Let’s give it up for our TAs Yomairy and Thayna.

Thank you for all of the thousands of things you have Googled this summer and the countless hours you have spent answering questions about homework and serving as IT consultants for every tech platform and operating system known to man. And let’s give a huge round of applause to our program director Natalie.

Thank you for your leadership, direction, organization, flexibility, poise, and grace under pressure. You did a flawless job running the show all summer and I don’t know what any of us would have done without you.

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Thank you to all of the family, friends, and guests who are here with us tonight. I want you all to take a moment to shout out the name of a woman in this program who you’re proud of. I know there’s a lot of love in this room and none of us here could have gotten through this experience without your support and encouragement.

Thank you to our hiring partners and the representatives here tonight from tech firms across south Florida. I know you will be every bit as impressed with the women on this stage tonight as I am. Every one of them has the skills, talent, and determination to become a valuable member of their team. But our ladies have so much more than that. They have vision. They each have a testimony, a unique voice, and a hunger to make a difference in their jobs, their families, their communities, and the world. Each of them was required to pitch an idea for a final project, and I was genuinely inspired to hear where they allowed their imaginations and creativity to take them.

I can’t wait to see the contributions that they make to the world through their technological skills, and I know they will have an equally positive impact on any company that is lucky enough to have them join their team.And now to the stars of the evening and the reasons we are all here tonight: Yani, Raidis, Nikki, Kyesha, Andrea, Milly, Annette, Parvati, Patrice, Sunshine, and Milen.

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It has been a sincere honor to bear witness to your journey and transformation this summer. It takes courage to make the choice that you made, to jump head first into an unfamiliar field and a brand new set of skills. It takes endurance to devote every waking hour of almost three months of your life to learning how to make chunks of metal and wires do the things you want them to do. It may also take a small amount of insanity. This would explain the laughter coming from all corners of the room on a daily basis (usually originating with Parvati).

I hope that wherever your next steps take you, you will remember those moments of joy. I hope you’ll remember the light bulbs that went off as you began to command concepts and technologies that were once foreign to you. I hope you’ll remember the way you supported and encouraged each other. I hope you’ll remember the community that you created where one didn’t exist before. That bond is every bit as much of an achievement as the impressive set of technical skills you learned.

And let me take a moment to brag about you all for those technical skills for a minute. This program was originally conceived of as a front end web development course. We were charged with covering HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and React. Instead, you covered more than twice that amount of the curriculum. You learned HTML, CSS, JavaScript, React, Node.js, Express JS, Mongo DB, Bootstrap, Material UI, git and GitHub, agile project management, lean product development, and a broad spectrum of other technical skills that now leave you fully equipped to pursue the web development jobs of your choice. You all are presenting full stack web applications tonight. That you built in TWO WEEKS! And that is a testament to your dedication, your passion, your intellectual curiosity, and your drive.

I’m overjoyed to be here tonight. I hope everyone in this room will do whatever is in their power to keep this same energy in the Miami tech ecosystem. To my knowledge, our ladies are the first all female web development boot camp cohort in Miami. Let’s make sure they aren’t the last. Let’s make every other city in America jealous of the support and access Miami offers to women pursuing careers in tech. You’re about to see that the talent is there, the dedication is there, the skills are there. And this program has proven that when women are given the platform, the access, and the opportunities that they deserve, they are game changers in the world of tech.

I charge everyone here to make this only the BEGINNING of a larger shift in the Miami tech space.So let’s show them how it’s done tonight ladies. Tear it up. Take your seat at the table. I love you all.”

We are so proud of the work these amazing women did, both the students and the all female team that helped put together the program. To learn more about our goal to have a 50/50 female to male ratio in our school and contribute to closing the gap for Women in Miami Tech, see our scholarship here: https://wyncode.co/womenintech/