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Brian Lee-First women engineer at Instagram

By Shreya Dalela
From National Institute of Technology, Silchar
Posted Oct 6th 2013 5:00AM
Brian Lee InstagramHeard of Brian Lee? She is the first female engineer at Instagram. What's amazing is that she doesn't even have a graduate degree in computer science. She is an inspiration for all since she is the woman to have worked in all firms, be it Google, Facebook or Yahoo and now she is the first full time engineer at Instagram touching 250 million lives daily.

Like most people who are interested in marketing, she joined a start-up and since they didn't have a website, she was asked to read a book on HTML to start coding for it. That's when her journey with coding started. What followed was purely a result of hard work and passion. Not having a degree might hold you back but she went ahead with learning Java and other courses and what interested her was how marketing could be enhanced in quality through better design and coding for the websites. She gives huge credits to the Grace Hooper, which is the gathering of technical women in the computing world. It was her scholarship experience at Grace Hoopers that helped her get the first internship at Yahoo. So after studying communications and interning with Yahoo, she felt ready to immerse in technical and computing world completely and took a master's degree in it. That's why she says it's never too late to become a software engineer. So after a couple of internships at Google and Facebook and teaching Java, she joined Facebook full time.

Recently, in 2013 she joined Instagram. If one takes a look at her LinkedIn profile, it is really fascinating to see how a person managed to do around eight jobs ranging from Marketing, Web development, Teacher assistant, Interaction Designer, Research Assistant etc and around three internships in major companies and also a master's degree in a span of 13 years.

This year's Grace Hooper Celebration of Women in computing is going to be held in Minneapolis. It will have personalities like Sheryl Sandberg, Maria Klawe, Megan Smith etc. If such events can play such life changing roles shouldn't India also organize events of this kind? After all, all women in technical domain have expressed the need of more women in the domain.

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