AdaCore Blog

International Women’s Day: My Career Journey

by Charis Fisher , Cléa Mendelewski

Every 8th March, International Women’s Day is celebrated around the world - it’s a great opportunity to highlight women’s talents, their achievements, and what makes them great at what they do.

This year’s theme is #InspireInclusion. At AdaCore, this got us thinking about what our team values the most and how we strive to create a sense of belonging and community, no matter who our people are, their level of seniority, or where they’re based.

Viviane Garese and Sofia Casale reveal more about their career journeys, their accomplishments in Software Engineering and Sales, and how AdaCore’s core value of collaboration helps to inspire inclusion at work every day.

How did you get to where you are now in your career?

Viviane Garese: I studied in Paris at EPITA, a French Engineering & Computer Science School. I also worked as a teaching assistant for my school for a year, teaching C, C++, UNIX, and Java programming concepts and managing a 3-month compiler project for 3rd year students. The last six months of my studies were spent as an intern at AdaCore in the SPARK team working on improvements for our GNATProve tool, which is a formal verification tool for Ada.

After my internship, I was hired as a full-time Software Engineer. I’ve now been in this role for 1.5 years.

Sofia Casale: I studied International Business at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island, and minored in Marketing and Spanish.

During the summer before my senior year of college, I joined AdaCore as a Marketing Intern. I really enjoyed that internship, so once it finished I asked if there were any open positions available for me to stay on at AdaCore. I was approached by the Sales team to join them as a part-time intern for the remainder of my studies, which was a great experience. After graduation, I relocated to join AdaCore full time in the New York office as a Junior Account Manager.

How did you first find out about the opportunity to work at AdaCore?

Viviane Garese: During my studies, I discovered I wanted to learn more about code analysis tools and decided to look for companies focused on this in Paris to find an internship in this area. As I began to research, I came across AdaCore’s website. There was an internship in the SPARK software team, which sounded really interesting to me.

Sofia Casale: A family member of mine was already working here and recommended it, so I already had a personal connection to AdaCore. That opened the door for me and introduced me to the Marketing and Sales teams, which was how I got to meet my future mentors and colleagues.

How has your career progressed?

Viviane Garese: My internship was a really positive experience. My mentor Yannick was really supportive of me throughout the whole process and was really understanding of the fact that I was new to the technologies. A lot of people helped me - I could discuss my questions with anyone, even people from different departments, which enabled me to get to know the products much faster.

When the internship came to an end, I had to make a decision on what my next steps would be. I spoke at length with the hiring managers for various open positions at AdaCore and I was lucky to find the perfect one for me - a role working on our test coverage tool, GNATcoverage.

Once I started in my new team, I was never made to feel like a newcomer or outsider. People were very helpful and kind in explaining everything and were really fun to work with. In my role today, I am trusted with implementing and creating new software features, some of which have been explicitly requested by key customers. It feels great to be given this autonomy and it’s rewarding to be able to deliver support directly to our customers.

Sofia Casale: After graduating, I joined AdaCore full-time in August 2021 as a Junior Account Manager. Within this role, I became responsible for establishing new and managing existing accounts and client relations within my assigned territory all across North America. This was a customer-facing role, so I recognized my team was placing a lot of trust in me, which was a welcome challenge.

Fast forward to the present day - I was recently promoted to Key Account Manager. I’m very excited to be taking on this opportunity. My professional development has come a long way over the past few years and it’s really validating to be recognized for doing well in my work, especially since I don't come from a technical background. Learning about AdaCore’s products has been a steep learning curve but everybody has been incredibly supportive in helping me develop my skills. The team has encouraged and motivated me to keep delivering a higher standard of performance every day.

In my new role, my territory has expanded and I’m now handling more complex projects and more strategic accounts.

Collaboration is a core value at AdaCore. How do you see this play out on a daily basis?

Sofia Casale: I’ve always felt really supported at AdaCore. Even as we’re scaling up and growing into a larger company, we’ve still kept that feeling and culture of being a smaller company. We still get opportunities to collaborate across departments that we might not get to speak to on a day-to-day basis and we’re not isolated within our teams. I think that really speaks to the sort of culture that we’ve developed here over the past 30 years.

Something that struck me about AdaCore when I joined was how even people who weren’t in my department reached out to me to welcome me on board. This was something I really appreciated.

Viviane Garese: I completely agree with Sofia. I think a very important point of the culture at AdaCore is that everyone feels approachable. It doesn’t feel like a huge corporation where there are people who are so far removed from what you're doing that you're never going to speak to them. From your head of department to the CEO, it really is possible to go and speak with anyone. This means you can build up a good level of general knowledge about our products and company developments, even if it doesn’t directly affect your work.

What does a day in your role look like?

Sofia Casale: My typical day-to-day tasks include phone calls and meetings with clients - either check-ins with existing users or new customers that I'm introducing to AdaCore. I'm fortunate that I get to travel for my role either to attend events or to visit customers onsite in person. My priority is to ensure that my customers have everything that they need in order to be successful with their projects. Outside of my main role, I've been involved in the Inclusion & Diversity working group at AdaCore, which has been a wonderful initiative to participate in as well.

Viviane Garese: A day in my role involves a mix of development and bug fixing. Typically, I’ll be developing features and fixing any issues in the software that either I’ve noticed on my side or that a customer has picked up. In our team meetings, I have the opportunity to give feedback about the development of our technology. For instance, I might say ‘I’ve checked this potential solution out and it won’t work in practice because of XYZ, but maybe we can use this other method instead’ - it is really great to be able to voice my opinions during these discussions.

How has working at AdaCore helped you develop new skills?

Sofia Casale: AdaCore was my first ever professional experience. Since I’ve been working here, I have noticed a lot of personal growth in terms of my confidence and my ability to perform at my best. I'm learning every single day. I really appreciate being able to leverage my team members’ expertise in situations that maybe I haven't seen before.

I’ve been able to develop tactical skills as well as some soft skills. When I joined full time, I took a public speaking training course, which was a great team-building exercise with a small group of people from different departments. Six months ago, I took a three-day Strategic Selling course and later this year, I’ll be taking a course in negotiation, which will be invaluable for navigating more complex conversations with customers.

Viviane Garese: I have definitely noticed changes in my performance. As I get more familiar with our tools, I am being given more complex projects, which I’m really happy about. As with Sofia, this is also my first professional experience, so I’ve evolved quite a lot in the way that I approach projects, and my confidence in responding directly to customers has grown too. I also took the public speaking training course and I’ve seen the positive impact this has had on me. In December, I spoke at a roundtable on the topic of women in engineering and I found I ended up using a lot of the skills which I had learned during the training course.

How do you feel as a woman working in the technology industry today?

Sofia Casale: As a young woman in what is effectively a very male-dominated industry, I have found that everybody has been wonderful to work with. I do feel heard and I feel like I have a voice here. Within my own team, I have excellent role models of successful women in business who I look up to, and am very grateful for.

Viviane Garese: Being a woman in engineering isn’t something I really ever think about. It doesn't come up ever, which is a really good thing, honestly.

The fact that I'm a female engineer has never been an issue or a topic of conversation, neither for me nor for other people in my team or in other departments. This is so important and I think it’s something every engineering team should strive for. The less this is a topic, the better, definitely.

What would be your advice to someone considering joining AdaCore?

Viviane Garese: I think the most important thing for a newcomer to know would be that the whole company is very understanding and open to letting you discover the work that you are interested in and help you do it to the best of your abilities. Everyone here has incredible listening skills and there’s a lot of trust.

Sofia Casale: At AdaCore, I have never felt like just a number. I’ve always felt really valued here, no matter what level I've been at. Everyone wants you to succeed in your role. The biggest take away is that there's space for people here - space for them to grow professionally in whatever role they so choose.

We’re passionate about helping people build software that matters. If you are too, we’d love to hear from you - check out all our open positions at

About Charis Fisher

Charis Fisher

Charis Fisher is Marketing Engagement Executive at AdaCore. With a Master's in Translation and Editing, Charis has now been specialising in marketing for software, AI and technology businesses for over 7 years.

About Cléa Mendelewski

Cléa Mendelewski

Cléa Mendelewski holds a Master Degree in HR and Strategic & Change Management. She joined AdaCore as an HR Generalist in September 2021 following 7+ years' experience in HR and Talent Acquisition in the construction industry. She is now HR Manager at AdaCore.