My first day at Andela Bootcamp

Being invited to join Andela Bootcamp was my first step to fulfilling my dream of becoming a world class software developer. words cannot explain the joy on seeing that invitation email. This came with extra opposing reactions though. I didn’t know what to expect on joining the Bootcamp. My first idea was an environment where a group of young guys are glued to their seats all day staring at computer screens and banging keyboard keys. But, that doesn’t sound so cool, does it? Well, i had to get to the Andela campus to find out.

Now on my anticipated day i wake up early enough so as not to arrive past the stated time, no second chance for first impression you know. with my idea of expectations in mind i clad in official clothes. on arrival to the campus reality unfolds and i realize i was wrong all together. i meet my fellow boot campers preparing for a warm up. A few dressed like me, with the rest dressed less official to completely casual. The warm up gave me some sense of freedom and that open mind before proceeding to the training facility.

our first session was delivered by a facilitator i consider one of the most hilarious. His focus was breaking Bootcamp down into individual components or modules , setting the expectations as well as familiarizing us with the whole idea of Andela fellowship. This i can say gave me a clear idea of what i need to do, not only to succeed in Andela selection but also in professional life. He emphasized five expectations which he wrapped up into the acronym EPICC. This he explained to stand for Excellence, Passion, Integrity, co-operation and commitment. The explanation was quite vivid and made me feel like it would have come earlier. But, “Its never too late to achieve your dreams ”, they say. I liked the way he used an analogy of preparing a meal to explain the whole concept of expectations. With a lot of interactive learning and real life examples we concluded the first session.

There followed the introduction to our teams as well as facilitators to the groups. we had a chance to interact with fellow team members together with our facilitator. This gave the feeling of team spirit and its essence especially among software developers. It gave me a chance to hear stories from guys with different backgrounds from mine which induced the sense of pride and made me understand the essence of diversity.

Our second session which took place after lunch was more technical but interactive in similar manner to the morning session. I had a chance to learn about crucial basic tools in the life of a programmer. These included the essence of using GIT as opposed to traditional way of developing programs. I also had a chance to learn about Test Driven Development. I must confess this was my first time to hear about TDD. By the end of the interactive i was able to appreciate the need to use more of TDD in programming or software Development in general to avoid fatal problems occurring after system installation.

The end of second session marked the end of my first day at the Bootcamp. But my story wouldn’t be complete without mentioning of three guys i was able to interact the most on the day. This included Justin, Ian and Paul.