Fauziyya Hammawa — Sharing knowledge to empower communities

muslim women in tech profile picture of Fauziyya Hammawa
We’re so excited to welcome Fauziyya Muhammad Hammawa, aka U Can Code as our latest Tech Sister! Tech Sisters Stories is a series that profiles Muslim women in tech and brings attention to the incredible personalities and work we have in our community.

Can you describe how you first got into tech? What originally sparked your interest?

I’m a student studying information technology in Nigeria. My university doesn’t go into much detail about coding; we learned just enough that I became seriously interested. I looked up how to code online, and the more I learned, the more I was in love with coding. My friend introduced me to SoloLearn, a fantastic platform for learning how to code with a very kind and helpful community. I would cling to anyone I met, online and in-person, who knew how to code and try to learn all I could from them. Once I became more comfortable with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, I started teaching others.

Would you like to describe your career journey so far?

This is my final year of university. InshAllah, I would like to keep going and get my master’s degree in either computer science or information technology. I’m a frontend developer right now, but I’m currently learning more backend languages so that I can be a full stack developer. InshAllah after that, I would like to learn about mobile app development. 

My professors are all so excited by my initiative and how much I’m learning. They like to take me to different tech events and introduce me to the people there. So many people are interested in my story and the work that I’m doing. 

What inspired you to start making YouTube tutorials?

When I was learning how to code, I used to get bored reading tutorials and books all the time. I liked watching YouTube videos and seeing the code in action. Eventually, I realized that if I could learn how to code from YouTube tutorials, I could post my own lessons that would help my co-students.  

I started my channel, U Can Code, and uploaded my first video on how to make a dropdown menu. I felt so excited when I saw that it had five views! I’m hoping to start adding voice-overs to my videos so that I can make it easier for people to follow along. 

You recently started teaching in-person coding classes. Can you tell us more about that?

I actually just taught a class today! I have twenty students, and I spend so much time preparing practical lessons for them. I’ve always loved teaching, even when I was a child, but I was always too shy. I’m still shy, but I’m happy doing this because I love this subject so much, and I love helping people make positive changes in their lives. 

I'm still shy, but I'm happy doing this because I love this subject so much, and I love helping people make positive changes in their lives.  Click To Tweet

The only thing holding us back is a lack of laptops. We only have four laptops for a group of twenty students. Students have to share, and of course, that’s not the best way to learn. InshAllah I’m hoping to arrange for some donations so that the whole class has the equipment they need. 

What’s been your favorite part of sharing your knowledge with your community?

What inspires me and keeps me going is seeing what my students can accomplish after I finish teaching them. None of them quit or give up; they all continue learning, and they sometimes send me messages telling me about what they’ve built.

What inspires me and keeps me going is seeing what my students can accomplish after I finish teaching them. Click To Tweet

How do you feel as a Muslim woman in tech?

I feel so powerful! I love being Muslim, coding, and teaching others. Coding is going to be such a necessary skill in the future, and I get excited by how many young girls and boys want to learn about it. 

I think more Muslim women should get into tech because it’s (mostly) not haram, and it’s something that brings a real benefit to the community. As long as we take what’s good and leave what’s bad, there’s so much potential to help lots of people through our work.

What’s the thing that you’re most proud of? What did you do, and why is it so special to you?

I’m proud of myself and the work that I do. I help people believe in themselves and their abilities. I’m proud of anything that I do that inspires people and touches their lives. 

What is something in your journey that you regret or wish you did differently?

I often wish that I started learning how to code when I was ten instead of when I was seventeen. I could have gotten so far with those seven extra years!

What is something or someone in your tech journey that you’re grateful for?

I’m grateful for my parents for being so supportive and proud of what I’m doing. Sometimes my family leaves comments on my YouTube tutorials, it’s so sweet!

I’m also grateful for my friend Ephraim Edeh, who first introduced me to SoloLearn. And I’m massively grateful for the founder or SoloLearn Yeva Hyusyan. Her product means so much to me and has positively impacted so many people 

Thank you for sharing your story with us, Fauziyya. Jazakallahu Khair! You can keep up with the incredible things Fauziyya’s doing on her Twitter and YouTube channel. If you liked this, be sure to check our other Tech Sisters Stories and get to know the amazing talent we have in our community.

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