Ashley Qhimnqoshe: Expanding Skills

Ashley Qhimnqoshe: Expanding Skills

Ever since high school I had an interest in IT, to pursue what I thought I loved, I enrolled at a local college to study IT. While there I realised my real interest and passion was for coding. After a rough first year I dropped out because I was failing - I felt like my dreams of becoming a coder were over because I couldn’t afford to study further. That’s when my friend told me about the Salesian Life Choices’ Academy. It was a second chance and an opportunity to pursue my passion for coding. Since starting it has been a life-changing experience - not only a place where I learned hard skills like Html, Java and coding but where I have made a difference in my self-development and growth. When we did the life skills element of the course I questioned what it had to do with me being a great website developer.

A while ago, I got my answer, when I pitched my services as a website creator and developer to a local business in Khayelitsha. I went to a store to purchase some gas when I saw the owner, normally I would shy away from the interaction, but that day I felt confident when I realised that there is an opportunity to find out if his company had a website. I remember approaching him and thinking about the life skills coaching about confidence, and communication. I told him that I’m studying coding and that I can create a website for him. He was open to it, so we had a meeting where he gave me a brief, and I was hired - securing my first client! Today the website is live and I’m pursuing other opportunities to build websites for businesses in my community. I feel it is important that I take the skills I am learning back to my area. My main goal is to start my own company, where I get together with coders from Khayelitsha - the aim is to be role-models in our community.