How Juan Carlos Mellizo Found His Place in Australia's Startup Scene

Updated: Jun 21

Having arrived in Australia from Colombia a few months before COVID-19 lockdowns, Juan Carlos Mellizo decided to upskill his programming talents to help him understand how the world works today.

To a software engineer, technology represents unlimited possibilities across every industry. For Juan Carlos Mellizo, computer science is a way to challenge himself in a way that keeps curiosity and the desire to learn alive.

Since he was a child, Juan was restless; curious and eager to discover the reason why? In Colombia, he worked as a programmer and project leader at the multinational bank, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria, before making the move to Australia towards the end of 2019.

While arriving in Melbourne to learn English, he saw the INCO Academy INCODE curriculum and jumped at the opportunity. “ I saw it as a wonderful opportunity to connect with people with the same desire to learn while being able to practice my language skills in a more professional context,” Juan says.

During the program, he saw its challenges as problems to be solved. Together with his fellow learners, he was able to discuss the challenges in-depth, breaking them down into pieces to then build solutions. Solutions which were the result of teamwork. “You investigate, try and fail. Fortunately, as a class we found a solution, which is very good because it helped me understand how to deal with the problem.”

His experience culminated in a capstone project, what he ultimately deems as the most rewarding part of the program. “The final presentation of the project is the most rewarding to see how we can put together everything we have learned to develop an idea and make it a reality,” he says.

With placement support, Juan found an internship at edtech start-up, Ready Teacher, which allowed him to put his experience into practice as a Front-end developer. An experience in which he has “learned a lot from the CEO of the company and from the technical leaders.”

“I see myself having my own IT consulting company where I will be able to give people the opportunity to start, and professionally grow within a company.” Looking to the future, Juan is prepared to support the curiosity of others within his own company; to help others take their next career steps in an industry he is at home in.

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