On our careers site, we encourage candidates to tell imposter syndrome to take the day off — in other words, don't let a confidence gap, or a lack of a traditional tech resume, get in the way of applying to HubSpot. 

One of the best ways to reinforce this idea is to tell the stories of how current HubSpotters got into tech, especially if it was through an unexpected or nontraditional path.

Here, Senior Software Engineer Karen Champ shares her story. (Full transcript below.)


I'm Karen, I'm a Senior Software Engineer on the Growth Onboarding team, so we bring new users into HubSpot and teach them how these products.

When I was about maybe eight or nine, I started playing on the website Neopets, which is a website where they give you virtual pets, and you raise them. And they did this thing where every pack got their own web page that you could customize yourself. And you could, you know, put the HTML CSS in there that you wanted to, you can basically do anything. Lots of people on there would start making all these tutorials - "here's how you can do this on the page" and stuff. And I thought, "this is amazing" and kind of taught myself a little bit how to code from that.

Then, when I got to college, I studied mathematics, and really, really didn't like it. So I started spending all my time with other clubs and societies instead and one of them needed a new website, and they said, "Does anyone know how to make a website?" And I said, "well, I kind of remember how to do that, like I did some of this stuff before, you know, HTML, CSS stuff, I kind of know what I'm doing there." So I built this website and had so much fun. I thought it was amazing. And I was like, "you know what, I think I actually could want to do this for a career." So I Googled every web dev agency in Dublin, and just emailed them all and said, "look, I'm looking for an internship, will anyone take me for an internship?". And one of them, I guess, got sick of seeing all of my emails and eventually gave me an unpaid internship. And then the following year, they gave me a paid internship. And then when I graduated, they gave me a job.

So I guess my advice for anybody is that you don't have to, you know, to have been born coding. You don't have to have gotten a computer science degree. You don't have to know from the very beginning this is what you wanted to do. If it's fun for you, and you think it's interesting, there's going to be a way in.

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