Posted on June, 21, 2017

Written by Lauren , Software Developer, Chicago

Posted in Careers

Lauren, a software developer in Chicago, is a year and a half into life at IMC. After receiving her doctorate in Computer Science from Notre Dame, she was looking for her next challenge. She finds challenge in her work at IMC on a daily basis. Follow her journey here.

When I was pursuing my PhD I never would’ve pictured myself in finance. My research focused on creating programs to analyse the genetic differences in malarial mosquitoes and examine speciation in flies. A lot of my time was spent working directly with biologists on projects like reconstructing the Y chromosome of a species of mosquitoes. Today, I partner with traders to calculate pricing volatility in the market. Surprisingly, there are number of parallels.

At IMC, I work with traders rather than biologists, but I collaborate even more closely with my colleagues to understand their requirements and advise them as to what’s possible in a solution: it’s a real back-and-forth relationship. Just like in the lab, my ideas and opinions are listened to, respected, and challenged at IMC. Our office culture encourages all of us to say what we think and engage in healthy debate. We work together to achieve the optimal solution and although we’re different in a lot of ways, that commitment (to working hard, delivering, and doing it as a team) is something we all share. 

Going into the interview process, I was curious to better understand the culture and the people because I had my doubts about working in finance. We’ve all seen the movies about Wall Street and I had been cautioned about an abundance of “brogrammers” in the industry. It was immensely important for me to find a place where I would fit in. My IMC interview was personal and pushed the boundaries of my capabilities as a programmer. It was clear that I would have an abundance of interesting problems to solve alongside a group of enjoyable people who were committed to making me a better programmer.

I also asked to meet a female developer during the recruitment process. We talked about office environment as well as professional and personal growth opportunities. She assured me that IMC’s culture was supportive and embraced diversity of all types. When it comes to inclusion and support, IMC has far exceeded my expectations. I’ve had formal mentorship from three people, but I can request intelligent feedback from anyone here. My smart and motivated co-workers keep me energised and serve as a daily reminder that I made the right choice by joining IMC.