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Emily Saldana

"I myself as a queer POC youth, never really had [this] sort of exposure..." 

Emily's Words

I first heard about maven through an Instagram ad my friend sent to me because I really enjoyed learning about coding in my intro to tech class my sophomore year. It sounded cool so I decided to sign up, little did I know the path that Instagram ad would take me down. I remember when I was first informed that camp would be held at different locations every day my mom thought it was probably going to be a scam and I would get kidnapped or something, I mean it sounded too good to be true. Spoiler alert it most definitely was not. 

Now it's two years later and I am so thankful I took that chance and would gladly do so again. Whether I'm a camper, youth leader, or renpy teacher  I have been able to not only expand my knowledge over coding and tech to heights I didn't think were possible but also have the opportunity to gain and improve upon my skills as a leader and a team player. I myself as a queer POC youth, never really had that sort of exposure to the LGBT community until I got to high school and even then it was very little, through Maven I have been able to find a greater sense of community and meet so many amazing people with similar experiences and common interests to myself.  

At first, you might be a little intimidated by the thought of having to create a video game and think ¨I have no coding experience whatsoever" let me tell you right now you do not need any prior experience at all, the way that maven teaches and sets up their curriculum is so that anyone can easily learn the basics of coding in a fun way. One of my favorite experiences while teaching and leading groups for maven is dressing up as Hannah Montana or taking on some random persona with my fellow teammates. It definitely captures the attention of the campers and gets a good laugh out of them.
 

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