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Learning to code to upskill in digital project management

During six months, Karine divided her time between Le Wagon bootcamp, a full-time job, and her family life. Her goal? Upskill as a project manager to collaborate more efficiently with developers and work on exciting digital projects. Discover Karine’s journey.

Learning to code to upskill in digital project management
Featuring graduate Karine Legault Mallette Project Manager More about Karine
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What’s your background, and why did you decide to learn to code?


I studied design and communication and then worked in marketing and advertising agencies. 

When I started working on digital projects, I realized that my studies hadn’t provided me with the technical tools to be fully operational. So I looked for a technical training to improve my skillset. 

First, I enrolled in a certificate in Digital Information Management, but I found that it was too theoretical and not practical enough. 

I continued my research, knowing that I didn’t want to pursue an engineering degree either. I took online courses but I found it lacked the structure to put everything together. So I turned to Le Wagon! 

Le Wagon’s strength is the program’s structure, which focuses on technical skills while teaching how to manage a team, collaborate on projects, and use hosting environments.

The product sprint - organized over one day - is an excellent example of how we can bridge the gap between design, production, and management teams. 

Why did you choose the part-time program? 


By learning new tech skills, I wanted to get better at my job without changing careers. 

I had no intention of quitting my job, so the part-time training suited my needs. I was able to go through the program at my own pace without having any gaps in my career. It was perfect! 

What do you do now?


I started looking for a job a little before I finished my training at Le Wagon. Then, Locomotive reached out to me for a Digital Producer position. Their mission corresponds to my vision and the type of projects they work on interests me a lot, so I accepted the offer.

Learning to code added strength to my profile. It's often a challenge to find creative and technical people. My design background and the fact that I learned technical skills allowed me to stand out. 

During my interview, my programming knowledge allowed me to have more in-depth conversations and the team quickly saw that I was able to talk with developers while bringing another perspective. 

What are your responsibilities as a digital producer?


The role of a digital producer is similar to that of a project manager. 

My responsibilities are to:
My job is to work with the client, the development team, and the design team. I consider everyone’s needs so we can be proud of the results while being aware of potential technical limitations. 

How are you using the skills you learned at Le Wagon? 

I learned to be more empathetic towards developers. Having gone through difficult times when I was coding gave me a better understanding of their reality.

The bootcamp allowed me to understand the technical limits of a project better. But above all, I got better at transmitting information to the developers. Now I can challenge them and be more active in the decision-making process.

I can also define more easily when I have front-end or back-end needs, how long it will take, and when I should involve one of them. The connection between front-end and back-end is much clearer to me. The final project helped me a lot. I understood that front-end and back-end work together right from the beginning of a project. 

What did you like best about this experience? 


The human aspect was great. It was really fun. The first day you feel like you're alone with your difficulties, but you quickly realize that everyone is in the same boat. 

I did the bootcamp during the pandemic when we didn't have much opportunity to see family and friends. It was fun to see people three times a week and talk about our experience, even if it was on Zoom!

How did you manage to balance work, the bootcamp, and your family life? 


With a two-year-old daughter, it was challenging to manage everything during the pandemic! However, it gave me an even greater sense of pride when I finished the program. 

You have to be well organized. The first few weeks are hard, and then you get into a routine. And finally, six months go by so quickly! 

Any advice for someone who wants to learn to code?


Other than signing up for Le Wagon? 😅 

My goal was to put myself in the shoes of a developer. Today I understand that it's not always black and white and there are no easy answers.

My advice would be to practice, be curious and get out of your comfort zone, that's where you learn the most! 

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