Iris Classon
Iris Classon - In Love with Code

VLog: I need your help- I’m looking for a job

It’s with a broken programmer heart I have to announce that we decided to let me go from IdentityMine. After 7 months of trying to get me a work visa for the USA to work at the Seattle office we have come to the realization that there isn’t any chance in hell I will ever get one since I do not have a computer science degree or the equivalent of 15 years expert knowledge. It was, still is, my dream job, and not only am I sad and upset that w couldn’t’ make it work for reasons beyond our control, I am also sad I won’t get to work together with my dear friend and manager, Laurent Bugnion.

If you don’t want to watch the video, I say something along these lines:

I have a bachelor in clinical nutrition and natural medicine, done separate courses on sports medicine and have one course left on my master in public health. On the tech side I have a 2 year degree (vocational training as a C# developer with SQL server skills), and I have a dozen of Microsoft certifications (or so), several awards and scholarships, a bunch of titles, coauthored a book, spoken around the world – conferences large and small, and currently working on my fourth online course for Pluralsight. I have a tremendous passion for programming, and what seems like an eternal supply of energy for learning more and getting better at what I consider to be the best job in the world- programming.
I do however not have one of the two only things that would let me work in the US, a 4 year degree, or 15 years of experience as an expert.

So it sucks.

And I’m pissed off.

And quite frankly I don’t care if my language offends anybody right now because this is my blog and I feel quite strongly about this.

I’m looking for a job, not any job. A job where I work with equally passionate developers.

And I want to code.CODE. No PR, marketing, evangelism, booth babe, project manager, design, sales, or whatever.I want to code.

Put me in a tiny little dark cave of a room with a bunch of girls and guys that haven’t seen sunlight for months, with a Kanban board smudged with yellow postits and awful attempts at stickman drawings and reminders to fill up the coffee machine that spins 24/7. I want to be a part of a team, one filled with grumpy developers that secretly love to come in to work and that is why they never go home. With blending monitors and editors sporting syntax highlighting only a person on acid would appreciate and lunches where variations of chocolates are considered fruit and veggies (the dietitian in me dies a little when I write this). I want to argue, discuss, convince, be convinced, push, pull, commit and spend my lunch breaks being updated on hacker news or reddit (certain threads only of course). I want to celebrate builds more than birthdays, watch BUILD like other people watch the Grammy Awards, discuss framework changes like its celebrities Angeline Jolie (‘did you hear X adopted Y framework?), and equally make fun of the Justin Biebers in our world .

Most of all. I just want to be a part of a team where everybody is smarter than me, and I get to code. Both should be fairly easy.

Where it is doesn’t matter. I’ll move pretty much anywhere for the right job and the right team. And you have my 100% commitment and energy.

I come alone, no kids or spouse or pets (and no plans for any of those), but I come with a personality and energy of a crowded backpacker hostel on the Gold Coast in Australia during the summer.

Over the next few weeks I’ll post videos and information about me, and contact me if you have questions or you know the perfect team for me to try to join. I’m asking you this because I’ve made so many good and interesting friends online (oh boy does that sound sad) and I keep thinking, darn,- I would love to work with that person and that person. I would hate to not apply to the perfect job because I don’t know about it.


Leave a comment (via email)
Scott Barnes
5/29/2014 5:31:03 PM
Hmmm I didn't have a degree and nobody really did a background check on my resume to "prove" i had 15 years experience in the industry and I moved to Seattle from Australia on a L1 Visa. Microsoft has also gotten people into the US for much less... so you *could* get a gig at Microsoft, get them to do the L1 Visa, then do your green card application after that and then go back and work for Identity Mine... ok so my plan wasn't that well thought out...

Point though is others get in for far less so i'm wondering if all options have been exhausted here or is it a special situation between Sweden and US maybe? 
Dave Black
5/29/2014 5:50:20 PM
You'll be just fine Iris! Your ambition and drive is stuff of wonders! 
Filip Ekberg
5/29/2014 5:52:29 PM
Reply to: Scott Barnes
Scott, Australians have it much easier, from my understanding, to receive visas in US. Both visitor and working visas. The only reason, to start with, that I got my bachelor degree in SE was to be able to work in US because that was the only way of getting in. There are other ways to get into the country like starting a company but that is extremely expensive.

From my understanding you'd need to get in on a skilled visa, H1B1, which hits the maximum yearly allowance within a couple of days/weeks when they're yearly released.

The regulations around the visas are ridiculous and frustrates the hell out of me as well, especially when me and my partner was looking for overseas work. 
Laurent Bugnion
5/29/2014 10:14:47 PM
Reply to: Scott Barnes
We tried the L1 route and could probably get one after 1 or better 2 years of Iris being employed remote. That's too long a wait. I still think (and Iris does too) that she should work on location with a team immediately. Very sad and frustrated that this couldn't work. 
Paul Mason
5/29/2014 10:40:05 PM
That sucks. We have the same degree requirement in South Africa and have to send affected people out of the country for a month every year.

Have you considered Telerik? They have a number of offices in Europe and are an amazing company. 
Marcel Veldhuizen
5/29/2014 11:11:00 PM
I'm sorry to hear that your job didn't work out for such "mundane" reasons. In this day and age it's easy to forget that borders can suddenly become a very real thing.

Unfortunately I'm not in a position to offer you a job, nor can I think of any offerings that really stand out of the masses. I'm sure you'll find something to your liking, I know I'd love to work with people that are as passionate about coding as you :) 
Mat Brunt
5/30/2014 12:33:51 AM
Have a look at

Passionate teams - check
Fun environment - check
Awesome peers and constantly learning - check
Kanban / agile / TDD / every other buzzword and popular term in the last 10 years - check
Actual management buy in and passion for the above things - check (I know!)

Disclaimer: I work there as a dev. The work is demanding - the only easy day was yesterday, but since when do you have any fun when things aren't involving? And if you like constantly learning, well, then you're getting paid to do what you enjoy.

However it's in the top 3 of every place I have ever worked, and most days it's actually at the top. The people are awesome, we're spread out across the globe and I think we're on a mission to have every nationality on our planet :-) 
James Bach
5/30/2014 1:12:17 AM
There is no good reason for that rule. It is ironically an example of the poor education of people in charge that they would not see the absurdity of such rules. It is also an example of power politics by the schoolists-- who believe schools should control who gets to work.

Fortunately, coding is one of those things that does not necessarily require you to be in any particular place. You may have your heart set on a traditional job, but you can work on contract.

(I am a high school dropout who wrote video games, professionally, from the age of 16) 
5/30/2014 1:26:31 AM
I never meet you but I think that you're a great person and It's incredible how you put yourself and your soul in front of the camera with naturally. I hope you'll find your dream job because It's what really matters in the life. If you have a job that you don't like, your life will never like you. I'm 24 and i code for the same company from 8 years, meanwhile from 1 year I founded a new startup and I hope that will be my definitive job. Maybe this could be a possibility for you, most of startups maybe can't pay you a lot, but passion and team don't miss in this little companies. I wish you the best and good luck. 
5/30/2014 1:57:22 AM
If IdentityMine wants Iris and Iris wants IdentityMine :) why aren't you working remotely?

Of course, sometimes it really depends on projects and customer but for a developer job, for majority of cases, there's no problem.
You can go visit the team and work together few times a year. And as Laurent said, you will be able to get VISA after around a year of being employed remote for IdentityMine.

Sure, from the social \ human interaction point of view it's not so good, it depends on the person, but you said you are a cave kind of developer :)  so it should be OK for you.

I'm working remotely from Europe for a company in US for years now and it's been good.
Why are companies \ people reluctant from working remotely for developer positions?
Internet speed today never been better, we can see and hear each other perfectly thousands of miles away.
Also, but probably not in your case, sometimes this could be a significant saving for a company. 
5/30/2014 2:16:08 AM
Also, I just finished watching your video. 
Big pluses on being honest regarding plans for family.
I am pretty sure you are going to find your dream job \ company. 
Gabriel Tanguay
5/30/2014 3:45:42 AM
Hi Iris,

It sucks that you couldn't make it to the USA. I'm working for gestigon GmbH in Lübeck, Germany and we're actively looking for some coders. The management and spirit here is great, we also like to celebrate releases and key revision numbers. If you liked to develop some apps with the Leap Motion, then you might find it interesting to play with the panoply of sensors we have here.

The page says we're looking for C/C++ engineers but we're extending our SDK to many other languages and your skills in C# could be needed.

Here's how to contact management if you're interested:

Good luck with your search ! 
5/30/2014 5:57:14 AM
Wow, I'm sorry that happened. Especially when you already had your dream job. I'll keep a lookout here in the US for something, but I'm not sure how much help I can be. :[ 
5/30/2014 7:05:16 AM
Iris, you should definitely come back to Evry :)!
We always got a spot open at Internal Business Development! 
André Carlucci
5/30/2014 8:11:18 AM
You've got a new mail :) 
Ashley Raus
5/30/2014 9:05:20 AM
Hi Iris,
Your story was passed to me through a coworker and I'd be very interested in speaking further.  Please shoot me an email when you can.
Dan Emmons
5/30/2014 2:11:02 PM
I may be able to help. I am a big advocate for people that have talent, drive and want to get things done regardless of a "degree" status. Hit me up @CoderTrader 
5/30/2014 2:17:02 PM
Iris, are you interested in Cologne Germany? We are a pure player Microsoft. SharePoint Development. High flying Projects. Intranet and Public facing, using all new Microsoft Technologies. 
5/31/2014 12:09:20 PM
If your hungry to get on Don't forget London, Manchester, etc. England is not that far from London. 

So emotion in work not language... 
5/31/2014 7:06:12 PM
Reply to: Scott Barnes
Yeah, having moved to Seattle from Sydney, and having two friends "miss the boat" at the same time simply because of nationality, I can concur that our visas from AU -> US are basically a rubber stamp. From what i've heard it has a lot to do with promises about supporting the Iraq war or something cloak and dagger like that (I think this is why the E3 visa was even created).

Good luck though Iris. The right opportunity will come along. Maybe you could start a degree in the US in CS while working? 
6/2/2014 1:47:16 AM
The company I work for is hiring in the Uk at the moment.  It's really interesting work ... I've been here about a year and it's the best development job I've had yet. 
Chris Podmore
6/2/2014 6:26:34 AM
Sorry to hear about the job.  I was leading a team similar to the one team you want to join but the team was moved to another project and we are no longer together but that's another story :-(  Although we weren't in a dark room but did have a Kanban board and spent plenty of time arguing / discussing, we had a great time and it's a real shame when an excellent team is broken up

I'm now working with an off-shore team that do have a real passion for what they do so sometimes things do workout and I hope you find your dream job again soon 
6/2/2014 7:47:27 AM
Coding job open at my company in UK, mainly C# but other stuff too.  No idea how to contact you but email me and I'll send you information.  BTW your comments don't work in Firefox 29. 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:15:26 AM
Reply to: Doug
Yeah it sucks :( I've applied to uni, however the degree is online and now I'm being told that wont count. Not that I *must* move to the US, I just don't like having limitations. AU is also hard, but I would be able to get a visa there. My sister lives there with her Aussie husband (they were not married when they moved), and it took a while to the the visa. 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:17:39 AM
Reply to: Nils-Holger
The country isn't important, the project/team is. However I don't think SharePoint is for me- but I really appreciate you asking! 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:17:57 AM
Reply to: Dan Emmons
I'll take you up on that offer, thank you 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:18:20 AM
Reply to: André Carlucci
Classic movie :) 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:18:47 AM
Reply to: Otto
As much as I like Evry, I'm keen on moving away from consulting and try something new :) 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:19:14 AM
Reply to: Gabriel Tanguay
Thank you for that, I'll make sure to check it out! 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:19:53 AM
Reply to: Jon
Thank you Jon! At this point I don't think I have an option, if I don't find a place full of passion to work I might loose my passion 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:21:32 AM
Reply to: Jon
At this stage in my career working remote is not an option unless doing pair programming, frequent code reviews and meeting in person on regular basis. I am a junior developer, and its my personal belief that you learn most from working close to other people,- in particular at that stage. 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:22:38 AM
Reply to: Marcel Veldhuizen
Thank you so much Marcel! Kind words like that go to prove that this is a great industry to me in!- and also shows why i want to work in a team. People need people, and devs need devs. 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:24:59 AM
Reply to: Paul Mason
I worked for a year for Telerik, however that was as a Technical Evangelist. Its not quite the direction I want to take with my career 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:25:29 AM
Reply to: Mat Brunt
I'll make sure to check it out! 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:26:28 AM
Reply to: Luca
I have no filters, and playing pretend is too hard and too draining. Some like it, some don't, I'm happy you do :) Go chasing that dream, we only have one life. 
Iris Classon
6/3/2014 7:27:48 AM
Reply to: Adam
yeah I need to fix that! I'll send you an email :) 
7/22/2014 11:04:26 AM
She should just come in through one of the southern border states. She'll be able to walk right in, thanks to President Obama. 
Lance Adekunle
8/16/2014 5:49:30 PM
My Name is Adekunle Lance I’m a very busy businessman, I have a global enterprise so I need a trustworthy personal assistant. I'm looking for someone that can be trusted and reliable to work very well and good understanding person this position is home-based and flexible, working with me is basically about instructions and following them, my only fear is that I may come at you impromptu sometimes, so I need someone who can be able to meet up with my promptly.  The activities of my personal assistant are handling and monitoring of my financial activities. Basic wage is $700 weekly.

Interested people should kindly contact me via email:

Prompt response needed promptly.
Adekunle Lance 
Iris Classon
8/24/2014 3:21:46 PM
Reply to: Lance Adekunle
Thank you so much Lance, I've however found a fantastic place and just had my first week. Looking at the fantastic responses I've gotten, and among them the kind offer from you, I can safely say that I'm a very lucky developer to be a part of such a fantastic and supportive community! 
Iris Classon
8/24/2014 3:31:50 PM
Reply to: Norm
I don't know enough about the border politics on the southern border, but US does have some interesting immigration politics. Today I'm very happy things turned out the way they did, I really like my new workplace in the UK :) 

Last modified on 2014-05-29