why learning how to program and why Launch School?

why programming?

I want to be completely honest here. For me it was simply about the money (at the early stage). I needed a job that would not require me to go to work at 8am in the morning and come home at 12 o'clock at night. I needed a job that would not call me even on my day off to go to work when I was spending time with my family. I needed a job that would pay me enough to afford a decent health insurance so that I would not have to wait every three years to do a annual check up. And the list goes on. So I started looking, the more I looked the more frustrated I got. For a guy in his late 20s, while in college, studying mathematic and physics, the chance of me getting everything I mentioned in my bucket list was very slim. Then I was seeing some ads about some coding bootcamps that made bold promises of guaranteeing students a 6 figure-income jobs after graduating from the program. I was completed intrigued by that kind of promise and it was very tempting to me personally. So I studied hard, day and night, trying to get into the program. The first time around I FAILED, failed miserably. I did not even pass the first coding challenge. Then there was second time, I failed again. But there was some progress, I breezed through the first coding challenge and failed the second one. Still at that time, I did not think that the program was not for me. I was just thinking that maybe I was not working hard enough. So I worked harder. I put in more hours learning how to code, learning how to do code challenges. Then the third time around, I was conditionally accepted to the program. On one hand, I was pretty happy with the outcome from all of the hard work I put into this endeavor, but on the other hand, I was like, WTF is “conditionally accepted”. Anyhow, I decided to move forward with whatever that was, and started another round of training that was laid out by the school. After a little digging around, I had a chance to see who else were also “conditionally accepted” to the program, then the reality hit me. Majority of people who got accepted to the program at this stage were either Ivy League graduates or people who have graduated from schools that are renowned for their engineering and science program. I was very confused. Why in the world did they have to apply to such a program that makes people think that it is ok not to have a degree in CS and we got your back, and then they get all of CS or engineering graduates in the country to polish them and then make the world believe they are the one that is turning people’s life around. I started seeing more and more “BS”. And of course, I did not get picked for reasons they can only justify themselves. (I thought I finished my final coding interview pretty well, and I was even taken to the second round after that to answer some non-coding questions: describe something I do for fun to a person that have never heard or seen anything I was supposed to describe. then I was rejected after that. (what a load of …..)). That was that. It was a disappointing experience for me, but I learned something far more important than just getting into a coding bootcamp. I learned something about myself. I am capable of learning how to program, PERIOD. I enjoy solving challenging problems, I enjoy building stuff no matter how hard the challenge might be. AND most importantly, I learned that I don’t need a program like that for me to accomplish all of the things in my bucket-list. That is a fact.

Why Launch School?

I started Launch School more than a year and a half ago when I was just beginning to learn how to program. I continued for two months and then stopped. I bombed my 109 assessment. I remembered Chris telling me that I was a bit “weird” when I was code and talk at the same time.(I was weird, I was so nervous to the point where I started to mumble stuff and was just reading the source code out loud so that I could have some time to think from the other side of my brain about the problem that was given to me). I did not understand the source of the issue I was dealing with at the time and just thought the program was not for me. I did know anything about LS’s philosophy, which is mastery based learning. I was just like any other person coming to LS the first time around. and also I let my ego get in the way of learning and instead of facing and fixing my problem, I chose to give up and just leave. After LS, I spend 9 months wasting time and money on other programs that were teaching half-a** materials. I mean I built some interesting projects. But what is the point, I did not understand anything I was building. I was working on rails before I learned anything in depth about Ruby, I was working on jQuery before I wrote a single line of code in JavaScript, I was learning how to connect database, server, and rails application before knowing what was HTTP, and not to mention anything about SQL. After that experience, I decided to come back to LS, because after spending nearly 9 month with another programs, I can truly say that LS is by far the best educational program in the country, if not the world, that teaches students almost every facets of web dev and learn it well. AND I have my own testimony, I started again in November 5, and until now, I gained strong understanding in fundamentals with Ruby, OOP Ruby, HTTP protocols, SQL, Ruby Sinatra, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. I can really say that I learned more in three month than I have learned in the past 2 years combined. That is the power of Mastery Based Learning. At the end of this blog post, I would like to shout out to people who are trying to learn how to program, who are learning from some half-a** programs, who are having doubts about themselves. Don’t be afraid, you are not alone. You don’t have to a math genius to be a web developer. If you are willing to put in hard work, be consistent with what you do, you will be successful in the world of programming.

The concludes my first blog post.