My name is Mmathuso Kgalane, I am 23 years old a first born of 4 children from my mom. I stay at Lawley2 far South of Johannesburg. I am a student at Richfield Graduate Institute of Technology, I am studying Information Technology specializing in Systems Development. People say I am friendly, kind and loving and also crazy but I think they are wrong. I am just a girl who has compassion, experience and love her choices. I choose how to live life and I am always honest with people and myself. I love food so much and recently fell in love with coding of course after joining GirlCode. I’m always talking and laughing, I love adventures and ICT related conferences and thanks to GirlCode and the conference organizers I have attended the best and learnt a lot. I am a cry baby and my EQ IS UNSTABLE.
Tell us about your IT journey
Well I didn’t have money to go to any university and I guess my marks were also not good enough, so I went to a college and wanted to do a short course in computers then get a job while working on upgrading my marks. However, the school consultant offered me better a diploma course which I applied to and got enrolled in 2016. It was horrible because I saw no point in it and I had no resources whatsoever not even a proper phone and I was clueless of how I will pay a private institute. 1st year made me hate IT. but I passed it well with a few struggles, then I repeated 2nd year 3 times because of finances and I hated it even more during 2018 which was my 2nd time doing 2nd year.
My friend introduced me to a workshop held by Girlcode and even though I had no laptop, I enjoyed the session and fell in love with being a developer. But still had no laptop. I attended my first ever hackathon, which was hosted by GirlCode and had the best time and from there I knew I have to be a female Software Developer. Some days I want to really give up but whats in my heart about being a developer is deeper than I anticipated and I refuse to give up. I am suppose to do my 3rd year THIS YEAR THEN I CAN BE A QUALIFIED SOFTWARE DEVELOPER.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I am unemployed so I don’t have a typical day at work, but before I got mugged I was working on a software program. I can hardly remember but I used to watch youtube videos, read books and got on every platform to help me with my skills. I slept 3 hours and coded everyday of my life. I did websites and posted on Twitter after doing an amazing job. So I would say my typical day at school was very hectic until my body shuts itself down and it landed me in hospital whereby now I am working on my depression and caffeine addiction.
What are some of the challenges you’ve faced?
If I was working I would say no man can give me a challenge cause i think on my feet when I am full, but since I am a student, delivering is the hardest, hearing boys talk about me when I tell them what I am studying, their negativity around my career choice and how much I am not cut out for the industry. Its still a work in progress but I am refusing to give up and I blocked myself from their opinions because my passion burns more than their words.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were younger?
I wish I knew that Information Technology is broad, Its not for men only and its definitely useful in the world. I wish I knew the fun in ICT and experienced it at a younger age. and I wish I was introduced GirlCode then.
What Advice can you give young girls?
To young girls who want to join the Tech space, my advice to them is let your passion for technology burn more than anyones’ opinion, close your ears to any negativity about the TECH-SPACE, embrace your womanhood in the tech-space and love what you getting into.
I don’t have a motto but I always say “If it burns its right, if it scares you its even great, if it takes your breath away its fantastic”
LEGACY TO LEAVE BEHIND
I want to be known as the woman that conquered the negativity for being a Software Developer, a woman that brought more woman into the ICT industry,help women understand the need for ICT as its evolving and create a few more famous apps that I have in mind.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to write this as its my first time and I never thought I would also get this opportunity.