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Juan Musleh, BEng '09

(Software Engineering)

Thriving in the world of tech

The tech job market offers a world of opportunities that women should be eager to explore, says Juan Musleh.

And she should know. The 2009 Software Engineering grad has succeeded at companies both large and small over the last decade, before settling into her current position as director of engineering at Tucows.

Tucows provides a range of Internet-related services for businesses and individuals, and Musleh says her technical education and experience give her credibility in her role managing engineering operations across North America and Europe.

“I work on setting technology direction and pushing the adoption of new engineering tools and processes. A lot of my time is spent growing the team, recruiting and hiring and finding ways to upskill the team,” she says.

Her decision to specialize in the world of technology was “a lucky leap of faith” resulting from her curiosity about programming.

“I chose something out of interest, worked hard and things worked out better than expected,” says Musleh, who has benefitted from a decade of demand for engineers with strong digital skills.

She encourages young women to consider the tech world, and says research and networking can help them find companies with supportive cultures.

“I look at the executive team and if there are not many women in senior management roles, I would usually find that discouraging,” she says.

Co-op experience with Evertz helped Musleh land her first software engineering job with the company. She then worked as a developer and led an engineering team at FreshBooks, a company offering cloud-based accounting software to small and medium-sized businesses.

As development manager for Toronto-based Bitstrips, Musleh says she enjoyed the experience of “working with a small team to build interesting products for millions of users.”

After the company was purchased by Snapchat for $100 million in 2016, she was inspired to co-found Upspark.ca, to help technology firms scale their engineering capacity.

She encourages students to invest in themselves by keeping up with trends and attending industry events.

 “Also, build a strong network of people that inspire and challenge you,” says Musleh. “I think that opens up a lot of opportunities and broadens your perspective.”