WANDA came into my life at a time when I had lost my job, my home, and my desire to continue living a routine life. I vividly remember the day I made up my mind and said to myself, ‘I’m moving to California.’ With my eight-year-old daughter by my side, we embarked on a journey to the Bay Area, eager to see what opportunities awaited us.
As a self-taught project manager in the aerospace and defense industry without a degree, I faced numerous challenges. Upon arriving in San Mateo, I reached out to various resources, sharing my plans and aspirations. That’s when I discovered WANDA. They said, ‘Why don’t you talk to them? See if you can join the cohort.’ I decided to give it a try, and to my delight, I was approved. The moment I joined WANDA was monumental in my life.
While still feeling uncertain, I enrolled in computer science classes at the College of San Mateo, contemplating the commitment of four years. The COVID-19 pandemic hit, intensifying my doubts. Making $60k a year wasn’t helping either. However, I resolved to expedite my project management skills and increase my chances of finding a job faster. WANDA provided financial support for me to join a program at UC Berkeley. I pursued my studies, obtained my CSM (Certified ScrumMaster) certification, and I’m now working as a scrum master for a startup that supplies parts for an electric vehicle company. In less than five years, thanks to WANDA, my income has increased by 50%.
Throughout my journey, I never missed a payment, and the support I received from WANDA was invaluable. Joining and actively participating in the monthly classes focused on finance and mental wellness made an immediate impact on my life. WANDA offered me a network of supporters who continuously motivated me and instilled in me the willpower to keep pushing forward. The diverse members of the WANDA community reminded us that we were not alone in our struggles.
Before WANDA, my circumstances were marked by low income and a less-than-ideal credit score. However, since becoming a part of WANDA, my financial situation has dramatically improved, and my credit score has seen a positive transformation. The most impactful lesson I learned from the program was the importance of having a network of amazing women to guide me along my journey. WANDA empowered me to take charge of my personal finances and thrive when I feel supported.
My experience in WANDA has not only influenced my own mindset about money but has also positively impacted how I educate my daughter. I have already witnessed improvements in my teenager’s attitude towards money management. I even opened a savings account for my child to instill healthy financial habits from an early age.
WANDA offers more than just a program; it provides a life-changing opportunity to connect with an incredible network of supportive individuals. The bond you form with fellow members and the guidance you receive from them is truly invaluable. WANDA’s commitment to matching your efforts and contributions 2:1 throughout the program further demonstrates their dedication to your success. From 2020 to where I am now, I cannot emphasize enough how fortunate I feel to have had WANDA by my side, providing unwavering support and helping me shape a brighter future.