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Meet Aline: how an e-commerce entrepreneur and mom became a web developer

Aline was running a successful ecommerce business, but working long hours did not seem so appealing once her son was born. She decided to make a career change and landed a developer job right after our full-time Web Development bootcamp.

Meet Aline: how an e-commerce entrepreneur and mom became a web developer
Featuring graduate Aline Utiyama Full-stack Developer in Xenon Partners More about Aline
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Hi, Aline! What were you doing before joining Le Wagon coding bootcamp?


I have always been into footwear. However, finding something nice and comfortable in Japan is a real pain, and I would always ask my friends and relatives traveling to Brazil to bring me back a pair or two of good shoes. That’s why when I decided to launch an ecommerce company in 2015, I knew it would have to be a shoes importing business. 

We quickly built up a decent social media following which translated to a lot of sales. Our shoes were selling like hotcakes! At first, I kept all the shipping and packages at my home - imagine a room packed with 2,000 pairs of shoes. A couple of years later, we had our own warehouse and our venture had grown into a successful ecommerce business making thousands of dollars in sales every day.
Entrepreneurial days

Sounds like a great entrepreneurial story! Why did you decide to move into programming?


Understanding programming is opening doors for endless opportunities – especially in the ecommerce space. I started learning HTML and CSS because I wanted to manage our OpenCart-based online shop by myself, instead of outsourcing simple programming tasks like changing font color and size to an expensive developer. And I really liked it! 

Another important reason that convinced me to gain tech skills was my family. After a while running a retail business, we welcomed a child and it became incredibly tiresome to be a mother and manage the day-to-day operations of the company. I couldn’t work until midnight like before and considered leaving ecommerce for good. Luckily, the business was attractive enough and I was able to sell it to a larger company that is now expanding with great success.

After the handover period was completed and the new owner had taken full control of the ecommerce business, I was able to focus on what I wanted to do next. I tried to learn coding by myself, purchased some online courses but couldn’t build anything after a year of learning. My husband, who is running his own recruiting firm, recommended me to join Le Wagon coding bootcamp based on his clients’ positive feedback. 
Aline and her shoes at the offline shop

How did you juggle having a kid and learning coding full-time? 

I am lucky to have a supportive husband. Since he was working remotely, he could take care of our son and pick him up from school. Thanks to his help, I could focus on my studies and learn how to build web applications from scratch. 

What was your favorite part of the bootcamp? 

Demo Day
Seeing our web products go live! In the two weeks leading up to Demo Day, we worked in teams to develop an app addressing a real business issue. Me and my batchmates Sho and Alex developed MentorHub, a matchmaking platform for mentors and mentees. The excitement and interest that we saw from the audience during Demo Day really convinced me that I was capable of building cool applications.

Working as a team fully prepared me for working at a company. After we managed to build a couple of projects together, I definitely felt more secure about a career switch. 

How did your job hunting go after graduation? 


The Career Week organized by Le Wagon Tokyo helped out a lot!, I attended a job talk from a company called Xenon, and applied for the position straight away. They were looking for junior web developers and looked really eager to invest in bootcamp graduates. I landed a job interview just 1 week after submitting my application! 

So far, Xenon has been a great learning environment that grants me opportunities to get involved in several software projects and learn new tech stacks. Since I have a small kid, I also appreciate the flexibility in working hours, as long as I deliver what’s expected from me.  

Thank you for your time, Aline! Wishing you all the best in your new journey. 

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