Meet the Ambassadors: Gabriella Fumagalli, Switzerland

Publication date: September 29, 2014

Almost 90 EU Code Week Ambassadors from 36 countries are helping us spread the word about #codeEU throughout Europe. Who are they and why did they get involved in Code Week? We’ll be running a series of interviews and get to know them better. Our previous interviewee, Paulius Podolskis from Lithuania, interviewed Gabriella Fumagalli from Switzerland.




Gabriella, who are you?

I am a marketing specialist, digital strategy planner and entrepreneur. Over the past few years, I’ve grown passionately curious about new media and new technologies. I am a long-life learner, I am currently finishing my bachelor studies in communication (e-learning lessons). I am a design fanatic and I enjoy food and travelling, I try to get my dose of fun by running.

I co-organized the local GGD chapter and founded Rails Girls Ticino, now I am working on a project focussed on transferring digital and entrepreneurial competence to women and girls.

How does your country deal with this idea of code learning?

Education, research and technology are the main drivers of Switzerland’s’ knowledge economy, it’s research and scientific output is huge and has earned the country great International renown. Nevertheless, we do not have IT in primary schools, there was a project in canton Vaud for 10-12 yrs old students but it ended last June.

Thanks to the swiss dual vocational training system students graduates combining theory and practice in many IT schools. There are interesting initiatives to attract kids and teenagers animated by committed and enthusiastic parents, teachers, hackers or private IT companies or academic organizations.

Why are you involved as an EU Code Week Ambassador? What do you expect from it?

I have been organizing and attending events and workshops for a few years now, I believe that especially most women and girls will pursue tech if they are exposed to it and encouraged. They have to see the fun in it, it’s very important for many reasons, not only for the job market and unemployment, be creative, use technology to design, build, make and shape the world around them. Kids’ approach is different but still, we have to interest them by teaching coding in schools very early.

Code Week is a great initiative and I hope our countries, ministries, institutions will understand this great opportunity.

Do you have a hero or someone that inspires you?

My heroes are the many people who I met in these economically difficult years, startuppers, makers, ideators, trying every day to be positive and keep working on their projects maybe with small funds or any and the many inspiring women who are working hard trying to find their path. (In general, everyone who believes in the motto: “Get off that couch“!)