My Journey towards taking a Web Development Bootcamp

Hi there. Welcome to my blog. I was challenged to start documenting my journey and experience at HackerYou. I’m currently enrolled in the web development bootcamp in HackerYou’s downtown Toronto school. I’m on my way to becoming a front-end developer but it feels like a big change from even two weeks ago. I’m one week into my nine week adventure and am excited for what’s ahead. Getting here was a year-long process and I’m hopeful and eager to get my hands dirty in code!

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Like many others in the program, I stumbled into the world of web development. After I had graduated university with a degree in History of Religion I started to do what every grad would do; look for a job. I eventually got some office job experience (unrelated to my degree) and ended up working on some cool transit projects with the TTC and Metrolinx.

During this time, a friend of mine made the decision to make a career change to become a web developer. He took a bootcamp and after 12 weeks he landed his first job as a developer with IBM. My friend’s journey opened my eyes to the world of web development and became the catalyst for me to start investigating more. I was interested and wanted to learn more so I started to do some free online coding on my own through codecademy. This happened over several years of on and off coding through online resources. I knew I wanted to get into the industry of development but wasn’t sure exactly how I would go about entering it. I decided to initially try using as many free resources that I could to build my skills.

It wasn’t until last year that I decided that I would go all-in to start pursuing web development as a career. I did a lot of research and looked around for a reputable and well reviewed school in Toronto. It didn’t take long before I found HackerYou with it’s five star reviews and welcoming atmosphere.

I applied for the HackerYou bootcamp last summer and went through the competitive four step application. I had reached the last stage which was a group interview (more like a day filled with group activities and problem solving) but did not make it into the bootcamp due to my technical challenge not being strong enough. I was discouraged that I didn’t make it but I was determined to try again. I thought it would be enough for me to learn on my own online and decided to invest a little more and buy a membership to an online resource called TeamTreeHouse and learned through their web development track. I learned a lot through the video lessons but found it difficult to be disciplined and continually make time for coding.

After a season I was ready to apply again for the HackerYou bootcamp. I applied again and went through the four step process but found myself to have fallen short on the technical challenge again. However, after this application I was encouraged by the HackerYou admission rep to consider taking the part-time web development course. I decided it was time to take my learning to the next level and invest in taking an in class course. I took the course and it was the best decision I had made for my journey as a developer. There was a complete difference in my learning as I had a set schedule for classes, due dates for my projects, and prepared lessons which helped me manage my learning in manageable chunks. I was able to learn in a real class room environment and was able to get immediate feedback from my instructors and TAs.

Fast forward to today, I made it into the bootcamp and have been thrown into the world of web development. It’s been an awesome time learning together, connecting with fellow students and alumni and having a great time building our skills to be industry ready. I am excited to see what amazing things we will create in the next 8 weeks and, at the end of it all, start my first job as a front-end developer.