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Funke Olasupo
Funke Olasupo

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How I Learnt To Code & Got A Developer Job


Every time I reminisce about my developer journey, It always leaves me grateful. It dares me to be more and keep chasing my software engineering goals.
I got introduced to tech during a summer program in 2017 by Keeping It Real Foundation. The first tool I learned to use was a low-code tool (content management system) called WordPress.

I learned to use WordPress to build static websites and blog pages. I used it for a while and moved on to learning how to write code. I wrote my first "Hello World" in *HTML *(Hyper Text Markup Language). I also learned a bit of *CSS *(Cascading Style Sheet) alongside. I started building websites from designs with HTML and CSS.

The Role of Communities In My Journey

Communities have been an integral part of my technical growth. Starting to code, I joined a community called "Inventors". They guided my learning path from HTML to CSS and then Javascript. I learned to build confidence in my skill in these various languages although I was still a beginner.

I moved on to learn a server-side language. It was an attempt to understand backend engineering because I wasn't so thrilled with doing front-end.😊 I started with PHP and hooked up with Laravel(a PHP framework) until today πŸ₯°.
While trying to build my Backend Engineering skills, I got to learn a bit about database management and cloud services.

During this phase, I joined another community called SheCodeAfrica. We had weekly tasks and assignments on different backend concepts in the backend channel. This helped to improve my skills over time. It also taught me a lot through research for those weekly tasks about my career path.

I started looking for internships and hands-on projects to build work experience, and I decided to put myself out there. I became more vocal about my skills, telling people what I do. I also publicized myself and followed social media content related to my career.

Someone reached out to me within the community to volunteer for an Edu-tech organization called CodeVixens Academy. I jumped on that opportunity to gain more experience and develop my skills. This experience was peculiar to me because I didn't just learn how to code but how to follow standard & modern engineering practices. A few weeks later, I had the opportunity to interview for an entry-level role recommended by the organization's founder. That was how I got my first developer job. πŸ’ƒ

Technical Writing & Open Source: An Instrumental Tool for my Technical Growth

Moving on, I wanted to be intentional with documentation. As a Backend Engineer, How do I build APIs without proper documentation?
I also wanted to contribute to open source and document the bugs(errors) I encountered during my learning process and the solutions I discovered.

I started writing "How-To-Guides", Articles, and Tutorials on different backend engineering & open-source concepts. I realized that my research and learning rate increased due to this.

I got reached out to by a company on LinkedIn to write backend articles for them and get paid for it (sounds impressive, right😁?).

This was how Technical Writing became an entire career for me. I started paying more attention to advocating for good documentation, especially API documentation.

Taking another bold step into open source, I looked out for open source projects that needed improvement on their documentation and started contributing to them. I also got the opportunity to participate in Google Season Of Docs for an open-source organization.
Technical documentation significantly improved my engineering skills because you can not document what you don't understand. I will always be glad that I took this step.

In my quest for open-source projects, I became intentional in actively participating during Hacktoberfest. Then, I found Aviyel and got the amazing opportunity to share my coding journey.


One of the things I have learned to overcome during my journey is "Tutorial Hell". While learning a new language or concept, we start with tutorials( especially video tutorials). Most times, we end up wanting to watch more tutorials about the entire concept. This cycle never ends because you think you won't be a good engineer if you don't watch a complete tutorial on backend engineering.
However, you will end up stuffed with too much information you can not recreate. The best way to learn is to build. A tutorial should introduce you to basic concepts on that topic, then pick a project and build on it. This way, you realize that you learn better as you keep building. You also do better research to implement as you keep building.

This is just a brief highlight of my journey and how communities and open source helped my journey as a developer. I look forward to sharing more about this journey and how I have grown over the years. I hope you learn something from this.

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