When Irene was a young teen, her family made the difficult journey from Mexico to the United States in search of work. For the next few years of her life, Irene lived with her family in single-room migrant farmworker housing.
As a single mother with DACA, Irene came to Code the Dream looking for a career that would allow her to support herself and her daughter. She had been unemployed after the company she worked for previously went bankrupt. Having completed her initial Code the Dream classes, Irene became a CTD Labs apprentice, working primarily on advanced mobile apps. She particularly appreciated working on projects that had an impact in the community.
The last project she completed was a portion of the Vamos app to facilitate outreach and organizing among migrant and seasonal farmworkers. She felt particularly connected to this app because of her family’s work in agriculture. She knew firsthand the challenges the workers experienced and she cared deeply about their struggles.
While working at CTD, Irene said that “getting experience while making an impact at the same time has been so empowering. Code the Dream is giving me a future I didn’t have before. Code the Dream has given me the opportunity to have something to look forward to, to make plans for the future that I didn’t have before, and most of all, be able to give my daughter a better life and be a better role model for her.”
Irene is currently a Mobile Applications Engineer at BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina.