How a young mum became a software developer in less than a year
So, I guess I should initiate this story with a brief introduction of how this journey started. I graduated in 2016 with a Biomedical Engineering degree with Honours. I instantly started to look for a job in the same field as my degree specification as every eager graduate endeavours to do.
To my shock, 20+ applications, two interviews and countless rejections later, I became frustrated, tired and in all honesty, demotivated. It had been almost two years since graduation and I’d been working as a customer service advisor in retail banking. Completely non-related to my degree specification. I became comfortable and complacent that my current job was ‘paying my bills’ and ‘getting me by’. I had no plans until further notice and had honestly given up with applying for Biomedical Engineering roles.
SHOCK! HORROR! I unexpectedly found out on the morning of my 23rd birthday, that I had a bun in the oven! Now I HAD to find a stable career to finance my new lifestyle and bundle of joy. I begun reading all the self help books and blog posts that I could, to give me an indication on how I could excel in life and become an overnight millionaire.
I didn’t find my answer in a blog post, but I did find it by having a simple conversation with an old friend on LinkedIn, who was a recent Makers alumni. He introduced me to the opportunity that the matchless Makers, has to offer. It all sounded too good to be true and I had no faith that I’d be given the opportunity, seeing as I’d been rejected from countless job opportunities for the past two years and had NO experience in tech.
Makers Academy seemed like the perfect opportunity for me but £8k was not something I could even ask a magic genie for. I had to find a way to get a scholarship instead because my pennies wouldn’t stretch.
During my maternity leave, my proactiveness increased tenfold and I begun to practice coding, I started off with Ruby on Codeacademy (the best starter language in my opinion). I also completed an ‘Introduction to Web Development’, course hosted by Code First Girls (CFG), once a week for eight weeks. After this, I realised that I wanted to be a software dev. I was sold. I was introduced to BGL and the Makers apprenticeship scheme from a talk at CFG. Perfect! I could learn how to code in three months, get paid at the same time and have a confirmed, permanent job at the end of it! Can you think of a better deal? I think not! I leaped into foreign land by applying as soon as London vacancies became available.
Fast forward two months, I’d passed the sixth stage of the interview process. I had high hopes and could finally see the light at the end of my ‘career searching’ tunnel. Everything was falling into place. I knew software development and the tech culture was for me. It allows me to explore my creative side and challenge myself daily to reach my full potential. Makers apprenticeship allowed me to challenge myself, (REALLY CHALLENGE MYSELF), have flexibility of a work life balance with daily yoga, facilitate my own learning and in general taught me life lessons which will stick with me forever. Not to mention my ability to now make a perfect cup of coffee from the complex (in my opinion) barrister machine.
I am now currently sitting at my desk in the comparethemarket.com office, loving my new role as a Junior software dev. Happy endings do exist.
Closing note: Be encouraged, step out of your comfort zone and try something new! Being a mother is all the more reason to create the best life you can for yourself and your little one(s)!
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