Why I Quit my Job for Data

I came out of George Mason with a degree in Mathematics. I was on the rode to success, the world was my oyster. Or so I thought. I started applying to all sorts of jobs, mostly analyst positions, teaching jobs, and contracting positions.

I finally got a job as a government account representative with my own clientele! Wait, what does that even mean?

I thought my position would be working on government contracts and analyzing data. Boy was I in for a surprise. I turned out to be making cold calls for 9 hours a day getting paid a meager salary that was embellished at my interviews by “potential bonuses”.

Not only was I cold calling government employees all day, I was getting 10k less than I was expecting a year. I thought I could suck it up for a year, get “professional work experience” so I could easily get another position. The days wore on, never ending phone calls, rote memorization of a pitch to be said every call. I thought making a competition with my co-workers to see who could get more leads could spice up the monotony. Once I won the competition there was no satisfaction, I was in a dead end job, losing everything I had just learned in college.

I started looking for other positions, but getting home at 7 was tiring, so I would be productive for maybe an hour every night. This dragged on for months before I learned about General Assembly. There was a program for data science where you learn Python and SQL and how to use those languages to make models and predictions! It sounded like a way back into working with data, relearning some of my math skills. I was weary though, I have never known how to code. It is also a 3 month immersive program, meaning full time, 5 days a week, with labs and projects that take up your weekends. I thought to myself “3 months, it costs a lot, no income, but it can help you get out of this dead end job into something you want to do. Lets do it”.

Here I am now, almost 3 months after, about to graduate the program, regretting nothing. Had I not had such a terrible first job I wouldn’t have ended up at General Assembly. I plan on using what I learned here and expanding my knowledge with a deeper dive into a data science position.