One of Code Chrysalis’ mission is to empower women. A recent graduate of the Japanese Foundations course, Yunn Takiguchi, sat down with us for an online interview. Yunn is a mother of one child, age 3, and is currently working part-time when she decided to take a beginner coding course. She talked to us about her struggles with juggling work and family, concerns prior to starting, and hopes for other mothers. 🙋🏻♀️
What were you doing before you enrolled in Code Chrysalis?
I was working in music. 🎶 Specifically making music through commissions. Before having a child I could go work outside, but it’s difficult once you have a child.
What made you decide to enroll in Code Chrysalis?
Being at Code Chrysalis, I saw how much fun the students were having and was intrigued. It’s been over ten years since I’ve studied.
What were your concerns (as a mother) before the course began❓
I was worried if I might disrupt the class with my child, because I feared I’d have to tend to my child who can’t be left alone for 3 hours. Prior to my lessons, I made a schedule to balance between house chores and childcare. In addition I’d have to add my class hours and studying time, so I was worried I wouldn’t be able to keep up. Also, I have zero background in coding and was worried if I’d be able to understand the lessons.
Did you hire a babysitter or receive child care support from the local government?
No, not at the moment. My child is 3 years old, so they are going to daycare now. Before they were going to daycare, we did use a babysitter from time to time.
What was the Foundations course like??
Although it was online, it was like sitting next to each other. There is no time lag and it actually felt even closer, because you are always facing the screen with the others. You can’t slack off, so that was motivating for me to concentrate and work hard!💻👀
In the beginning, I kept apologizing whenever I had to leave the class to take care of my child. 👩🏫👨🏫 My teacher and classmates would always ask me if I was okay and they were very encouraging of me. After awhile I stopped apologizing. I’d also write down the time, so that I could review the parts I missed in the recorded video lesson after class.
What was difficult about the course?
Because I had zero coding experience, it was very challenging for me. Saturday mornings were difficult, because I also looked after my child for those three hours.
What was a surprisingly fun part of the course?
Making new relationships!👫👭 Students communicated at least once a day on Slack, many want to pursue Immersive, so they would put up a new coding challenge for everyone to solve, etc. we were all very active on the Slack channel. Even now this has helped me not forget what I learned in class. Also, the diversity, the staff and students are very diverse. I didn’t feel singled out for being the only mother.
What did your schedule look like?⏰
8:30AM~4:00PM: Work and childcare
4:00~6:00PM: Cook dinner, if possible give her child a bath
6:00 or 6:30PM: Start preparing for class
10:00PM: Finish class & bedtime for her child
11:00~11:30: Go to bed
2:00~4:00AM: Self study & go back to bed
How did you change after taking the course?
It’s been a long time since I studied, but by being a student and acquiring new knowledge while learning with a new group of friends was fun! 👩🏻💻👨💻 Now I can make a simple webpage, but I also want to make sure not to forget what I learned. If you put your heart into it, you can do anything.❤️ Throughout the course, there was an eye opening experience that I hadn’t anticipated. Being able to experience the joy of being a mother when my child was sitting in my lap during a lesson or when my classmates were talking to my child during the breaks. This experience was possible at Code Chrysalis, because of its diversity. As long as there is wifi, anyone in the world can work in the coding industry online. 👩👧As a mother raising a young child, this is an attractive point.
Another change I experienced was with my child. They’d start asking me questions like, “are you having fun?” or “did you finish studying?” The joy I felt when my child and I connected through her seeing me study is something I couldn’t have anticipated before taking the course.🧒👩 Also, this time during the course, my main support system was my husband.
👨👩👧 As a family, we were able to strengthen our teamwork and grow as a team. In the time we spent supporting each other, we were able to relearn the difference between caring for and trusting each other.
Being able to learn something new really expanded my world and gave me more freedom and confidence in my daily life.
Image for post Yunn preparing for her class as her daughter plays next to her (photo shared with permission).
Do you have any advice for other mothers who wish to join the course?
I highly recommend this course as a first step for mothers looking for a career change.👩🎓
- Have a schedule planned beforehand that works for your family. 📆
- Get support! From your partner(s) and/or community.
- Remember, you can do it!!!💁♀️
For mothers taking this course, you will need support. If you want to pursue an education, regardless of your situation, it’s necessary to plan a schedule that works for you and have a support system from either your family, community, or society.
✨Thank you Yunn!!✨
Thank you Yunn for doing this interview with us. We hope this time you spent learning at Code Chrysalis plays a part in your future and we are so excited to see the progress we all make to empower women and mothers!💪
Check out these links for mothers in Japan!
👩👧Tokyo Mother’s Group, English speaking support and contact group for all mothers throughout Japan.
Care Finder, Find qualified babysitters (available in English, Japanese, French, Chinese, and more languages).
Code Chrysalis is a full-stack coding school located in the heart of Tokyo🗼. Our programs include a 12-week advanced software engineering bootcamp, and a beginner coding course in English and in Japanese.
Want more? Check these out:
- How to Get Into Code Chrysalis
- Definitive Guide to Women’s Tech Events and Communities in Tokyo
- Why Join a Coding Bootcamp?
- How We Prepare Our Students for Engineering Leadership
- Learn about our alumni!