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Winning a Scholarship – By AO’er Robyn

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This year, one of our Junior UAT Testers bagged herself a pretty impressive 3 day scholarship set up by The Ministry of Testing (a UK founded society for software testers). Putting her doubts aside she took the initiative to apply, and the results were more incredible than she could ever have imagined.

Here’s Robyn’s story:

“What I genuinely love about AO, is having the autonomy to learn. Outside my day-to-day stuff, I’m able to up-skill. I’m trusted as an individual. So, applying for this scholarship really was something I just felt able to do. Nobody told me to do it, I just wanted to better myself.”

Robyn put together an application as soon as she saw the scholarship. She crafted her submission, telling them all about her background and her ambitions.

“Their reply said that they thought my story was fantastic! It said they’d love to support me on my journey, and that I’d really benefit from the scholarship. Well, I was dumbfounded! They replied almost immediately. I was so, so excited!”

The scholarship itself involved workshops, a conference and guest speakers. It’s definitely a big deal in the world of testing, and Robyn was feeling the nerves on the first day…

“Walking up to the Lowry on Thursday morning I was flippin’ terrified. But within 20 minutes, I was sitting with a coffee talking to 3 complete strangers. The nerves turned back into excitement after that. I listened with proper intent to everything. I really got some invaluable insight into the world of testing. I particularly enjoyed James Sheasby Thomas’ accessibility talk – it got me thinking.”

When she got back, Robyn wanted to share what she’d learned with the rest of the AOers back at the office. So she decided to run a workshop and a show and tell session, something she might not have felt confident enough to do in the not too distant past.

“Honestly, this scholarship has helped me on so many levels – even just becoming a more confident person. It’s opened up new testing avenues too. There are people out there in the testing world who know who I am now as well.”

“I feel really good about the whole experience. I want to make my mum and dad proud – that’s an important thing for me. And I think I’ve done it. I think they are really chuffed.”

And we’re chuffed too – Robyn’s done a wonderful thing in bettering herself, it’s something we really value at AO.