It’s Graduation Day!

Well, I made it! 14 weeks of learning 3 full stacks.

It’s graduation day at the Dojo today. Today started like any normal day. I got to the Dojo at 8am, started looking at job descriptions and tried to my reset my Indeed password. I’ve had an account with them before – I figured that out yesterday when I accessed it on my phone and was surprisingly able to save jobs I was interested in. Apparently their system was having issues because it gave me an error every time I tried to change my password…I ended up using my phone to go through the process of changing my password, which surprisingly didn’t have any issues. I applied for a job I saved and looked through some others.

Afterwards, I looked at the post bootcamp section of the platform – it became available to the graduating cohort today. The first thing was algorithms so I got out pencil, paper and my console and got to work – printing an array of values, printing the reverse of the array of values, finding the average/max/min of the array of values. The most complicated one for me? Inserting a value at an index. Why? Because if there’s a value there you have to make sure you don’t lose it. I struggled with this one for awhile before looking at the video explaining the process –  Add a zero at the end of the array (makes sense because you know you’re going to only add one value), starting at the end of the array – copy the values to the end of the array, then add the value at the index…Makes perfectly good sense now. I was trying all other things such as adding an if check to determine if the index of the current array matched the index of the value given by the user, then set the current value to a temp variable, replace the current value with the value given by user, then push the temp variable (which holds the original value) problem with this is that you can only push to the end of the array which may not always be the case. Not only that, but it just doesn’t work in the console – it results in an error and no output is given.

After looking through the first section of algorithms, which amounted to 18 algorithms, I switched gears and took a look at the job search section. The platform provided me great tips on the search booleans recruiters use to find applicants, what information should be on a resume and how to go about looking for the jobs you want to find. The whole video was an 1 1/2 hours long but after 40 mins it was practically time to start our ‘graduation’ so I decided to finish later on.

The graduation

I’ve been to enough graduations to know the graduation song and you better believe our instructor had it playing at the start of the ‘ceremony’ in a jokingly manner. I put ceremony in quotes because it was just the graduates and some people from other cohorts that stuck around. A few graduates presented projects – some from the MEAN stack others in Rails. The lead instructor said a few kind words and we had pizza and brownies! Afterwards we took these great group photos:

Slack for iOS Upload

And a goofy one for the road:Slack for iOS Upload-1

There is one grad not pictured here – he headed back to Seattle the morning of. The guy in the back facing his computer in the yellow was retaking his belt exam in hopes a perfect score. The guy in the red is not in the graduating cohort but his cohort is pretty nonexistent – There’s only four of them total so we adopted him into our group – He fits in perfectly.

In Conclusion:

All in all, I’d say we had a really good group and I am fully glad I decided to pursue this journey. The journey is not fully over because the next step is to get job ready! Next Tuesday, most of us will return and begin the next chapter – finishing projects, working on algorithms and figuring out how to start a career in this industry. I’m excited and pretty nervous! I’ve no doubt that we’re all capable of finding a fulfilling career of our dreams.

Social Good + Technology = Happiness for All

I recently went to a Holiday Meetup Mashup sponsored by ThoughtWorks in Dallas that was centered around the idea of bringing social good and technology together to create helpful solutions to issues.

The event began with you signing in and grabbing your pre printed name tag if you RSVP’d, they also suggested everyone put a star sticker on their name tag with a color to indicate if you are a non profit in need of help (red), a technologist who can offer help (green) or whether you were there to enjoy the event (gold). I thought the process made it easier for everyone to be identified.

There was an hour of social/networking time before the eight lightning talks began. The talks varied from specific non profits speaking on how they needed help to developers who have helped non profits and continue to do so.

I especially enjoyed the talks given about The Texas Parks and Wildlife and <Bold Idea>. The parks and wildlife talk wanted to bring together technology and the outdoors since most kids are on their electronic devices. The speaker wanted to marry to two ideas together. <Bold Idea> needed volunteers and developers to help mentor kids who enjoy tech. The idea is to hone in on their skills while they are young so they have a healthy exposure to it at an early stage in their life.

After the lightning talks, it was networking time. I also had a chance to speak to the organizer of the event and give feedback and connect with some people in the non profit industry who needed tech help. They also had a wall where you can add your contact info to a post-it note and tag it on the wall and those who needed help can put there info as well so we could connect. I thought it was brilliant, especially if you were in a hurry.

The event ended when you put your name tag into one of three buckets to indicate how you enjoyed the event: Enjoyed it, somewhat liked it or hated it. I sneaked a peek and found that most enjoyed the event.

I plan to get involved with mentoring in the <Bold Idea> project and see if I can come up with some ideas for the Texas Parks and Wildlife. Oh, and organizer mentioned they wanted to schedule a hackathon in the near future, can’t wait for that!

All and all, the event was awesome and I look forward to many more!