Thursday, April 16, 2015

I made it! Job contract signed!

Very excited to announce... I signed a job contract!  I was able to go from a code nobody to signing a job contract for a full-on developer position in 5 months.  No $30,000 dev bootcamp necessary.  Just self-teaching with online tutorials and scoring a jr. dev internship.  Seriously, that's crazy, right?

As of May 1, my title will officially be Software Developer. :-)  I am staying on at the company where I am doing my jr. developer internship.

If I can make it, I don't see why anyone else out there can.  I started flirting with the idea of trying to become a web developer in November.  I started reading some blogs from others that found jobs as jr. devs after self-studying for 6-8 months and got motivated.

There were 2 big obstacles to getting a job I saw when I started out learning to code... 
  • Living in another country and not speaking much of the native language. (How am I supposed to find a job or internship then?)
  • No dev bootcamps nearby. (I almost considered doing an online bootcamp....)
I didn't let these worries deter me.  Here's my milestones on my journey to get a developer job:
  • On November 13, I successfully battled homebrew and xcode error messages and installed Ruby and Rails and a text editor.
  • On November 26, I created a github account.  I didn't really understand the git process at all.
  • On December 16, I finished my first Rails app - One Month Rails' Pinterest clone.  I kept working through every free online rails tutorial I could find online.  I started the precouse work for 2 different online bootcamps - Tea leaf & Firehose project.  I was considering doing one of those.  
  • On January 13,  I applied for a couple jr developer internships.  I almost didn't.  Some of them were posted in Dutch.  I didn't think I qualified after only doing some online tutorials for ruby and rails for the past month.  And, I definitely didn't think I was qualified when I don't speak Dutch well.  My husband convinced me to just apply and the worse they could say is 'No' or flat out ignore me.  So I did.  Caveat:   There were no positions in my current city.  So I applied in other cities within commuting distance.  I was willing to commute ~3 hrs roundtrip from Den Haag to Amsterdam every single day.  I still commute.  It's freakin' tough but I've gotten used to it.  If I get a decent seat on the train, I pull out the MacBook and work on code stuff for work or work on Hartl's RailsTutorial. 
  • On February 9, I started a jr. developer internship (lots of struggling with tasks at work and reading Hartl's Rails Tutorial during my personal time happening for the next few months).
  • On April 14, I signed a contract as a full-time software developer!
So that's 5 months from the time I installed Ruby and Rails to I signed my job contract!

I still have a lot to learn.  I am learning something new everyday.  Some days I feel like I'm drowning and some days I feel like a coding champion.  I truly enjoy coding.  I'm kinda shocked sometimes that I do as much as I do.  I think about coding and the coding community all the time.  I never felt that way in my previous career.

I am so excited for the future.  I can't wait to see where I'm at in 3-6 months from now.