Coding Bootcamp: Pulse Check & Advice

If you’re like me and many other people that I’ve met that are interested in joining an immersive web development program, you got a degree in something unrelated to computers, never thought you’d be interested in a career in web development, and started learning some HTML/CSS on your own. When I was at the point of finishing some basic tutorials, I wanted to accelerate my skills and learn in an actual classroom surrounded by a tech environment. I did extensive research on several programs in different cities, from the curriculum to finding instructors on LinkedIn.

In the end of all my research, I ended up at General Assembly in Austin, and I’m very happy with where I am. The office space is amazing, I have a good group of classmates, and we have two experienced instructors. I’m currently in week 4 of this harsh twelve week journey and although it has gotten more and more challenging by what seems like the minute, I’m learning a lot. Are there times where I have no idea what is going on after being confident that I understood it during the lecture, oh yes. The first week was HTML/CSS, where it’s all fun and games and definitely gives you the impression that the rest of what you’ll learn will be similar. But it quickly escalated once we hit Javascript and then got into Node. The course moves FAST, and it takes a toll on your brain when complex material is in the mix.

At this point, my pulse is slowly but surely going. There will be times where you are dying of a brain ache in your seat and you look over and see others in your class typing away effortlessly. The most important advice I’ve gotten for this program was not to compare yourself to others in the class. When you see yourself in a place where you just don’t feel like you will ever understand the material while others are, it will be very difficult to start making comparisons. I’ve made this mistake and it only made things worse. But with everyone telling me that what I was feeling is completely normal, I realized that everything would be fine. My whole class is on the same boat and is going through the struggle but is still there to help me out. When you think that you won’t ever understand something, just remember that you just don’t get it YET.

So if you decide to enroll in a coding bootcamp, accept the fact that it’s going to be very challenging, but that you will finish the experience with life changing skills that can enable you to build awesome things! Enjoy the experience, become friends with your classmates, and put in the work! The saying “You get what you put in” is in full effect in this program, it’s only up to you to reach your goals.