Hey everyone, long time viewer first time poster here
I just want to share my experience becoming a Software Developer and hope it provides some encouragement for those of you trying to break into the field.
I’ve been a Software Developer for about 5 years now. I am not the best developer, I make mistakes, and I get stuck on a LOT problems. But that’s okay. Software Developers are not robots who write perfect code 100% of the time and accepting that you can be perfect has made me a better developer and mentor to junior developers.
I started my coding journey by leaving my job of 3 years working in a Semiconductor manufacturing facility. I hated my job and was miserable. Long hours without really learning anything new finally caught up to me. At that time, there weren’t many resources online so I relied heavily on youtube to learn how to code. As great as it was learning how to code online, I knew the current resources I had in front of me was not good enough. I decided to quit my job and attend a coding bootcamp. (Flatiron School 2015)
I understand a coding bootcamp is not for everyone, but for me I wanted to accelerate my timeline of becoming a Software Developer. The school was not easy by ANY means and it was not a GOLDEN TICKET that I can magically become a Junior Software Dev. I had to work really hard, be consistent, and keep grinding early mornings and late nights. There were many days I wanted to quit, I didn’t understand EVERYTHING, and psyched myself out wondering if anyone would really hire me.
After 3 months of coding bootcamp, I was able to land a full time full stack developer job a month after graduation. As happy as I was to land that job, it did not mean my learning journey was over. At work, I was constantly absorbing knowledge from Senior Developers and when I went home I kept coding. The point of this is to emphasize that you’re never going to feel ready to apply to jobs but don’t be discouraged not to! You will have so many opportunities to learn after you get a job so don’t feel like you have to know everything beforehand! Companies are taking a chance on you when you apply. If you show an EAGERNESS and WILLINGNESS to put in the long hours, I can guarantee you that your skills will grow exponentially.
Circling back to my current status, I am now a Senior Developer at a startup. I’ve been responsible for hiring junior, mid, and senior level developers for our company. Outside of work, I challenge myself with different frameworks, dev ops, etc…subjects outside of my realm. Also I created a youtube channel to help motivate aspiring developers and give some insights to some questions people might have.
I am not the best speaker or video editor by any means. But just like coding when I first started, consistency is what helped me improve in those fields. Consistency is by far the biggest characteristic that will help you succeed. I find that a lot of my friends who want to learn how to code start off strong but they end up giving up a month later. Be Patient! Set realistic goals of what you want to accomplish. If you are working full time and can only dedicate 2 hours a day coding, your timeline will definitely be longer than someone who attends a bootcamp. By setting small realistic goals, your motivation will stay high and progress will be made.
When I started my youtube channel, I was outside of my realm. (I started in early 2019) I had no idea what I was doing but I kept continuing, making videos, and eventually started dabbling in software I never used before. Of course it’s scary in the beginning to try something new, but you won’t know what you’re capable if you don’t try!
The last thing I will mention is apply what you learn. In my case, learning how to video edit was needed to make content for my channel. Don’t learn how to code for the sake of learning how to code. Building projects will give you a sense of accomplishment and is great for your portfolio!
I would love to read any questions you might have for me and hope it can provide some value to you!
A few of my socials are listed below