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My Journey into the World of Software Engineering

christinamcmahon profile image Christina ・3 min read

The time had finally come to pack up my belongings and move across the country and somehow I had convinced my partner and best friend to join me. We crammed everything we could into my friend’s car, dubbed “The Granny”, and made our way from my hometown in Asheville, North Carolina to Seattle.

I came to Seattle without a job or an apartment. After graduating with a degree in International Studies, I quickly realized I had no clue what I wanted to do career-wise. After crashing on some friends’ couch for a few weeks, I finally found an apartment but I still needed a job and so I ended up taking the role of a security officer at University Village, a path I never imagined for myself.

After a few months, I transitioned into a role that the Security department made specifically to play to my strengths. I had started digitizing many of the Security team’s outdated documentation, initiated a new digital parking enforcement system, and became a shift lead. Since I knew I didn’t want to stay in Security, I used my free time to explore other interests like art, math, and teaching. Unfortunately, none of these fields felt right to me but there was still a subject I had been putting off exploring: programming.

My partner, who is a software engineer, had been telling me to give coding a shot for years, saying my problem solving skills and highly logical mind would be perfect for software development but for whatever reason I had put it off. As someone who is generally very high-achieving and driven, I was fed up with my job and very frustrated that I hadn’t really started a career. I ended up taking an online Python Fundamentals course from the University of Toronto and lo and behold, I loved it. From there, I made my way through freeCodeCamp’s 300 hour Web Design course as well as a few Java classes at Seattle Central. At this point I felt confident that software engineering was a great fit for me and that I was ready to take the next step in kick starting my career. Cue going to Flatiron School.

Since I started going to Flatiron, I have looked forward to every day of class. It feels amazing to be learning so much and to be surrounded by such a diverse group of people with a common passion for coding. Every time I get stuck on a certain problem or concept, it feels so rewarding when I finally have that ah-ha moment and discover something new about programming or problem solving.

I look forward to whatever my career in software engineering has in store for me. My dream is to ultimately get a job that will allow me to always be learning and to make the world a better place, whether that be directly through my work, through earning to give, or preferably both. The beauty of software engineering is that it is such a broad and relevant field that it can be applied to many areas and have far reaching impact. I believe my passion for efficiency, creative problem solving, and working as a team, will propel me into success as a software engineer.

Posted on Jan 13 by:

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