Becoming an Andelan: path to excellence 2

coping in the face of challenges

The feeling

Close your eyes for a few minutes. Yeah, I mean your eyes. No kidding.

Now for a split second imagine you are in a conference where the presidents of many nations are in attendance. In addition to this, your parents, siblings, mentors and any other person you look up to basically. In a few moments the moderator of the function would invite you to come up and speak about the “importance of educating the female child”. Your heart is beating fast, you have a copy of your speech in your hand and you are nervous like every speaker that needs to deliver a high calibre speech but then you are also confident. It may be your first speech on such a level but you had done your research, you are smart and could easily rivet and capture your audience. So even though you were nervous, you were waiting to share with the world why the female child should be taken seriously. You were going to impress them all.

“Welcome with me Mr ….” the moderator announces calling you up to the podium. Mr …. will be sharing with this audience “The dangers of educating people in their Adult stage. He will also be telling us how to curb this menace that is very common in less developed countries. Its effects on the new world order, how it may be one of the possible causes of the Arab spring and the…

You almost can’t believe your ears as the moderator rattles on and on. You had prepared for a different thing entirely and here you were being given something else. What the heck does “the new world order and Arab spring mean?”. Foreign terms you’re sure would take time to really grasp. But there you are already on the stage, the microphone being extended to you by the smiling moderator. Its a pleasure having you sir he says. You cannot run away. It’s not in your nature. You want to scream “Hey man! that was not what I was expecting. The specifications did not mention all this. but then everyone is clapping and cheering your name as you take the stage. You handle the microphone and …God save us!

The action

Your brain races at the speed of Usain bolts legs as you employ every trick in the book to not just speak but make impact and be understood. You explain this concept and that concept. Things you have never heard before. If only they had told you this on time. No time for wishes now. It was do or be damned. You go this way and that, ask the audience questions that even clarified what you had in mind of saying. And there, the speech is almost done.


I cannot even laugh at the irony of the phrase “ You do not need any programming experience to get into Andela” Truth is the programme is likely any thing you have seen or experienced. Even with your experience, you will be really surprised. I felt like “the speaker” in the analogy after day one and two of Andela’s bootcamp. Only the passion for programming and my determination kept me going. I had to achieve results if achieving results was humanly possible. It was not my first time writing codes and being under such pressure but this level was a first. So many new things to learn in very limited time.

The result

The speaker finishes speaking and looks up expectantly. Wondering what his audience thinks and amazingly, they start clapping and applauding him. He had done it.

My audience(Andela) is yet to vet me as I am still struggling with hooking up my API routes, sequelize and database. I hope to finish that today though. The day of reckoning looms as I struggle to make concrete and verifiable progress thanks to some really cool resources. This audience must applaud me.

So on to routing : …app.listen( port, function..) …

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