Diversity & Inclusion
Career development / Coding / Women in tech

Dany was a recruiter but now she wants to code

Dany Bourjolly Smith is attempting a code-driven career change. We caught up with her at GDI Wilmington's Coffee and Code event.

Dany with her husband Ian. (Courtesy photo)

There seems to be a trend in professionals transitioning careers and carrying skills into the next chapter of their lives. Dany Bourjolly Smith is in the same boat. She told me about her story when we met at GDI’s Coffee and Code event earlier this month.
She applied to Zip Code Wilmington once and was rejected, but she doesn’t plan on giving up easily. Just like Aaliyah said, “If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.” That’s exactly what Smith is doing.
Smith graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in the ’90s with a degree in English with hopes of becoming a professor. Instead, she was offered a job as a buyer for sportswear at Hecht’s department store (which was acquired by Macy’s in 2005). Smith traveled between trade shows in New York City and St. Louis before she went into sales. That was when she was recruited by CEB (formerly known as Corporate Executive Board). She worked there for 10 years, recruiting for Fortune 1000 companies.
But now she wants to code.
“I have my own consulting clients, but I have found that the idea of the current [job] market here in Delaware and the idea of [staying] in my field are not two that align,” she said. “I’m 42 and I’m not independently wealthy. I actually have time to have a 20-25-year career.”
Smith relocated to Delaware for her husband Ian’s job, he’s the program director at Youth Advocate Programs. She has since decided to teach herself JavaScript using Code Academy and W3Schools.com.
“It’s kind of like losing weight, you can’t keep eating snacks and losing weight,” she said. “It’s been the most humbling experience of my life.”
Once she finally masters JS, Smith hopes to use her problem-solving skills from her human resources background to solve problems through code.

Before you go...

Please consider supporting Technical.ly to keep our independent journalism strong. Unlike most business-focused media outlets, we don’t have a paywall. Instead, we count on your personal and organizational support.

3 ways to support our work:
  • Contribute to the Journalism Fund. Charitable giving ensures our information remains free and accessible for residents to discover workforce programs and entrepreneurship pathways. This includes philanthropic grants and individual tax-deductible donations from readers like you.
  • Use our Preferred Partners. Our directory of vetted providers offers high-quality recommendations for services our readers need, and each referral supports our journalism.
  • Use our services. If you need entrepreneurs and tech leaders to buy your services, are seeking technologists to hire or want more professionals to know about your ecosystem, Technical.ly has the biggest and most engaged audience in the mid-Atlantic. We help companies tell their stories and answer big questions to meet and serve our community.
The journalism fund Preferred partners Our services
Engagement

Join our growing Slack community

Join 5,000 tech professionals and entrepreneurs in our community Slack today!

Trending

After shutdown threat, transformative Wilmington art space finds a new home

Cal Ripken Jr. essay: The MLB legend explains his drive to build STEM centers in schools across the nation

Startup302 awards nearly $200,000 to esports, environmental analytics and more

Drug tested in Delaware? A new medical marijuana law may protect you from getting fired

Technically Media