Firstly thanks for the post and. Bit about me. I am a c# Dev with 3 years industry experience.
In answer to your question. No it is not absolutely necessary to have industry experience, however it does make getting a job or clients easier.
I am speaking from experience, I have a degree in a niche engineering sector and I am currently employed as a C# Dev working on some pretty cool tech stuff, Azure, microservices, serverless etc.
I too wanted to get into programming and tech and that was around 3 years ago after going through some hard personal stuff.
For me I simply kept learning the craft whilst applying for junior jobs, until I found a company willing to take a chance.
I am essentially self taught. At first it was hard and frustrating, but not giving up and continuing go learn helped me to secure my job.
The best thing you can do is learn everything you can. Look at example projects on your favourite repository (GitHub, gitlab etc.) Read blog posts, hell write blog posts about what you've learned, get involved and never give up.
If it takes a month great, if it takes 12 so what, you will still have achieved what you set out to do.
Good luck and if you need more advice then shout up, this industry is one that generally cares!
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