Application for The Capentries Executive Council 2021 elections

By Yanina Bellini Saibene in Community Education English

October 30, 2021

What is your previous involvement with The Carpentries?

At the first LatinR Conference in 2018 (that I co-founded and now I co-chair), I learned about The Carpentries for the first time. The mission of The Carpentries spoke to me in terms of its inclusivity and how it wants to make programming more accessible to more people. I therefore started getting more involved by translating lessons, video captions, and glosario terms to Spanish. I’ve also developed videos for online teaching for the Latin American community and contribute them to the carpentries. In 2019, I hosted two self-organized workshops (R for Reproducible Scientific Analysis), one at the Researcher Center of Natural Resources in Argentina, while I was a member of the board of directors, and another workshop at the Argentine Congress of AgroInformatics. I co-taught both workshops.

When I became a certified RStudio Tidyverse Instructor, I learned about the book Teaching Tech Together, and I decided to take the lead in translating it to Spanish. The book is too good to be only in English, and it needs to be accessible to more people in my region and globally (Spanish is the 4th most spoken language in the world). Parts of that book were created for the Software Carpentry instructor training program; that is why, knowing the material, I contributed to the translation of the Instructor Training Curriculum to Spanish. I became a Software Carpentry Instructor in 2020 in an all Spanish Instructor Training in Argentina hosted by MetaDocencia (an educational community that I co-founded, where we teach how to teach to Spanish speaking educators). In July this year, I also became a Carpentry trainer. I taught my first Instructor Trainer in Spanish in August 2021, also hosted by MetaDocencia, with participants from Argentina, México, Ecuador, and Uruguay, where more than 80% have completed their checkout. I host teaching demos in Spanish and try to participate in community discussions.

Furthermore, I teach coding, visualizations, and data management at Universidad Guillermo Brown, Universidad Austral in Argentina and, Universidad de la Empresa in Uruguay. I use the Carpentries’ teaching strategies and lesson materials in my classes and see my student’s learning success has improved substantially.

What would you do as a member of the Executive Council to contribute to the growth and success of the community?

Our community has expressed that in this EC election, it needs people with expertise in:

  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion expertise - particularly in the global south Regional representation, strongly encouraging representatives of the Latin American communities
  • Strategic planning, specifically in nonprofits
  • Familiarity with nonprofit and open source governance

I bring experience in all of these points. I was born, raised, lived, do research, and teach in Latin America. I’ve been involved with open-source communities of practice in Latin America for more than five years. I started as an R-Ladies chapter organizer, now I’m part of the R-Ladies global team and helped develop R-Ladies in LatAm. As of Oct 18th 2021, R-Ladies in LatAm has as many chapters as USA/Canada, and The English speaking North America is the only region with more members. I co-chaired useR! 2021 where we worked hard to create an inclusive, accessible, and diverse conference. We achieved record numbers: we increased the number of attendees with 75%, and we tripled the number of countries represented among attendees compared to previous years. More than 200 participants from 16 Latin American countries participated, not only as attendees but with important roles like global coordinators, reviewers, team leads, keynotes, tutors, organizers, and more. I also helped other communities like MiR and co-founded the recently established MetaDocencia. MetaDocencia was born in Argentina during the pandemic and expanded to 30 countries, reaching ~2000 Spanish-speaking educators in less than two years. You can learn more about what I think about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and what we need in Latin America by reading this blog post I wrote about supporting diversity ( or watching me in this video ( for the Society of Research Software Engineering about missing narratives in discussions around diversity and inclusion in research software engineering.

I know Latin Americans start from a disadvantaged place, with fewer tools and resources, but we can still be leaders and have an impact in our region and globally. But for that to happen, we need to occupy decision-making roles, which is why I am applying to be part of the Carpentries EC. If I became a part of the EC, I hope I can 1) share my expertise in developing communities in my region; 2) open spaces and opportunities from the talents in Latin America, 3) share and explain what the communities in Latin America need to thrive, and 4) what Latin America can bring to The Carpentries. I also hope we can increase the number of instructors in Latin America and translate and create materials in the languages that we speak, read, learn, teach, and feel. Science and education improve lives. They are essential tools to narrow the structural inequalities in our society. I will work to give more scientists better computational tools to do better science, not only in English, but in my own native language. I will work to provide more teachers with better tools to teach. I know that The Carpentries community shares these goals, and so I hope to have the possibility to work and contribute to achieving them through a membership in the Carpentries EC.

You can wath my video, with captions in Spanish and English, here.

Posted on:
October 30, 2021
5 minute read, 914 words
Community Education English
Community Education The Carpentries
See Also:
Day 13: Distilling how to use Participatory Live Coding in-person and online - Tip 6
Day 12. Distilling how to use Participatory Live Coding in-person and online - Tip 5
Day 11. Distilling how to use Participatory Live Coding in-person and online - Tip 3 y 4