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How My Uncle's Encouragement Led Me to a Career in Technology

In the summer of 1991, during my vacation in Lima, my top priority was to finish playing "Prince of Persia" before returning to my hometown of Huancayo to start sixth grade. Little did I know that my uncle, Willord Urco, would soon gift me one of the most significant presents of my life, one that would shape my professional future.

One afternoon during that summer, my uncle Willord Urco arrived unexpectedly. I remember his energy, inquisitive nature, and good humor. I admired his studies in mathematics at a demanding university and his constant pursuit of learning. Even then, I imagined following in his footsteps. However, I was too engrossed in playing games those days.

Stop playing and learn how to program

On that day, I was alone at home, playing. Willord told me, "Stop playing and learn how to program." Although I knew what programming was, I was scared and lazy because it seemed complicated. Furthermore, I wasn't well-versed in English, and the multitude of new words made me lose interest in programming.

Noticing my doubts, Willord, being a good mentor, sat beside me and took a Basic programming book off the shelf. We spent hours building a program that could add, subtract, multiply, and divide. Willord wasn't a software expert; he was a civil engineer. However, he could solve every challenge we faced. That afternoon, with his help, I programmed for the first time. He showed me that I could learn to program with creativity, cleverness, and perseverance.

I look back on that moment with great affection, as I haven't stopped programming since that day. Over time, I discovered a passion for technology, agility, and innovation. Thanks to this passion, I've had the opportunity to lead technology teams that have built products such as TIM's Mensajes Misios, BCP's Yape, Interbank's Open Banking, and most recently, the Peruvian fintech Blum.

Unfortunately, Willord passed away fifteen days ago. I was fortunate enough to thank him for several things, especially those hours we programmed together. His enthusiasm, resilience, and perseverance until the end will always be an excellent example for everyone who knew him. Thank you, infinite thanks, Willord!

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