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April wensel

Founder and CEO, Compassionate coding

And - vegan

Please ignore all the stereotypes out there about who works in STEM.

What do you do?

I teach fellow software engineers how to apply emotional intelligence skills to write better code and work together more effectively.

Why did you choose this field?

"I loved how powerful it felt to create virtual worlds from scratch."

I started coding in high school and I’ve been hooked since then! Throughout my first 10 years working in tech, I observed how the lack of emotional intelligence skills on software teams leads to burnout, conflict, and a lack of diversity, so I knew I had to combine my tech skills and people skills to create Compassionate Coding.

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

I now run my own company and travel the world speaking to thousands of technologists about why humans and feelings matter. I only wish I’d had the confidence to get on stage earlier!

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love working in STEM because I get to harness the power of technology to improve people’s lives. I wake up thinking, “How am I going to alleviate suffering and create more joy today?”

Best advice for the next generation

You can care about people and technology — in fact, we desperately need more people who do.

Fun fact

Going vegan is what inspired me to start Compassionate Coding. Being vegan is about having compassion for all life, and with my company, I’m bringing that compassion to the tech industry!