Hello! My name is Seema, and I started this blog mainly as a way to write about my experiences at Fullstack Academy (you can read more about them at www.fullstackacademy.com). I will write a post soon about the admissions process as well as why I decided to attend Fullstack because reading blogs and talking to people who attended the program definitely helped me make my decision and I hope to help others do them same.
A bit of background information on what made me decide attend a technical bootcamp in the first place. I studied applied math in college and took a few programming classes (where I learned C++ and C#) which I really enjoyed. I never really thought about a career in software engineering though until a few years later. In college, some of the most meaningful experiences I had involved being part of community service and teaching and mentoring organizations. Long story short, these experiences led me to teach 9th grade algebra in New Jersey through the Teach for America program. While improving the quality of education in low-income communities will always be an issue close to my heart, I ultimately realized that teaching was not my true passion.
After thinking deeply about what I truly enjoyed, I realized that the one thing I had done that I genuinely enjoyed and could spend hours on without getting bored was programming and computer science. I'm a problem solver by nature and this is what drew me to computer science- I love to think about how to apply technology to solve a need and how to write efficient, elegant, and of course effective code. I decided to get my master's in Computer Science and pursue a career in this field.
Although I was happy that I decided to go to graduate school and study computer science, I was increasingly aware of a few things. My school, like many computer science programs, was focused more on theory than practical applications. Additionally, there were not classes offered on many of the topics I wanted to learn about, specifically in developing web applications and learning more modern technologies (NoSQL databases, new frameworks, etc.). Finally, I craved a more rigorous environment where I would be challenged more consistently- most of my classes met just once a week and did not have many assignments outside of midterm and final exams and sometimes a final project.
When I read about technology bootcamps, I knew I had found exactly what I was looking for, even though I wasn't aware I was looking for them. They taught the types of technologies and skills I wanted to learn and provided a structured environment and support that could not be found from online courses. Furthermore, the people who joined them seemed to be extremely passionate and invested in learning. The more research I did, the more confident I was that it was perfect me. After doing some more research and applying to a few schools (I will discuss this more in a future post as I said above), I ultimately decided to attend Fullstack Academy.
My first week of Fullstack Academy was last week and I can honestly say that it exceeded my expectations (which were pretty high) and I am very happy I decided to take this step. Originally, this post was meant to be a recap of my first week but I guess background first made sense. Our schedule worked out so that our first weekend (this past weekend) was a three-day weekend due to the MLK holiday so we are starting our second week tomorrow. I am really excited for the next twelve weeks and hope I will have time to update this blog now and then.