Before attending Epicodus I studied Psychology and had an interest in becoming a counselor. Following college, those plans changed and I became more interested in working at fun, non-traditional jobs. I worked at a bike shop, organic grocery store and ultimately landed a job installing art at the Cleveland Museum of Art.
What lead me to code was an interest in video games, my curiosity to keep learning, and my brother — who is also a developer and attended Epicodus before me.
What I remember distinctly about the first weeks is the rush. That feeling I got when figuring out a difficult task or problem. For example, after I had spent a few hours exploring and fully understand ing what a ‘loop’ meant and how it worked, it felt like Christmas! During the first month of Epicodus I think I was addicted to the feeling I got once I figured out a problem.
The most challenging aspect, I believe, is the beginning. Prior to the structure Epicodus afforded me, I attempted to learn a handful of times. While I did learn lessons from each attempt, Epicodus definitely gave me the confidence to dig deeper in my own personal study. While writing code and having that skill is quite rewarding in itself, I find the creativity coding affords to be deeply rewarding.
The two large influences have been my brother Spyder, seeing as he was in my shoes not too long ago. The knowledge, patience, and care he has given me through this process has been very helpful. The second would be my mentors Zac and Cullen at the company I interned with, Ride With GPS. The five weeks I spent learning under them helped to accelerate my learning and knowledge.
The company I interned with is called Ride With GPS. The folks over there built and maintain a bicycling route mapping tool. This tool is packed with features and handles a ton of data to produce practical information for their users.
My partner and I were given the opportunity to work on five different projects. We ended up only having enough time to work on four. The first one project is a feature that predicts the amount of time a route will take for a particular rider, based upon their average speeds recorded on past rides. The second project is an email templating engine which is used to help make designing and writing promotional emails much easier. The third and fourth projects were procedural image editing tools used to make business cards and postcards for a promotional campaign.
Overall, the projects were great lessons and each offered a different type of challenge.The big challenge I had was trying to work on a windows computer, which provided me with hours of fun errors.
I took two lessons from my experience at Ride With GPS. The first being that I have the ability to tackle difficult problems. The second being the value of being part of a team.
ReactJS seems to be the hot item in town as of late, so I would like to explore that. Python also looks attractive to me as a fun adventure into another language.
Have fun with it, and make friends.