Switching Careers Can Feel Safer with the Right Support and Guidance

By Samantha Anderson

Last Updated: January 15th 2023

From 8th Grade English Teacher to Software Engineer 1, Ramsey Solutions

"If you’re thinking about taking a coding bootcamp, and learning to code is something you’re serious about, honestly do exactly what I did: take the Web Development Fundamentals course. It’s extraordinarily affordable for what you get out of it. I need safe decisions. I have 4 kids. It needed to be safe, and it was."

This is Seth Faerber, a Nucamp Full Stack Bootcamp graduate and now a Software Engineer 1 at Ramsey Solutions.

Seth started out working as an 8th Grade English Teacher not knowing exactly where he wanted to end up, but knew teaching was only a temporary stepping stone toward his ideal career.

In his plan, Seth’s dream job afforded him financial freedom and time with his four daughters.

Seth has a knack for learning, he has three degrees including a master’s, so he wanted to leverage this strength and be rewarded accordingly.

Looking into which field matched him best, web development and software development came up consistently.

Compared to his other career matches which required PhD’s, Seth wasn’t interested in spending another 2-3+ years in college since he already was confident in his learning abilities.

A web development career even matched his Meyer’s Briggs personality assessment and fit the bill for the least amount of education required for entry.

Seth wanted to fast-track his start into his new career but the two main approaches he found were discouraging: (1) Create his own curriculum and rely on himself to stay disciplined or (2) Enroll into a full-time program, quit his job for 6 months, and pay $10,000 or more.

Thankfully he came across Nucamp’s coding bootcamps and thought it was the perfect fit for him.

“I was getting really discouraged, but then I found Nucamp. It was really obvious that it was the perfect fit for me. It was very organized, it was affordable, it had face-to-face interaction, and I could integrate it into my full-time job. It was a no brainer.”

Seth liked that he could test if Nucamp and if web development was right for him by taking the introductory Web Development Fundamentals Bootcamp for only a few hundred dollars.

Registering for Web Development Fundamentals was a crucial step for him and he ended up falling in love with web development and even was building small programs in JavaScript by the end of the bootcamp.

Seth then moved into taking the Full Stack Bootcamp, loving the community and support that came along with it.

“I’m glad I signed up for it. There were things that I know I wouldn’t have pushed myself through if I was teaching myself. I would have given up if I wasn’t in the bootcamp. Nucamp gave me direction that was so crucial. It was highly motivating.”

Describe your job search process.

After graduation in October, Seth took a few months to work on his portfolio.

By January he applied for some but didn’t seriously kick it up a notch until May.

After a month with little traction, he reached out to Nucamp’s advisors for guidance.

His advisor helped him update his resumé from chronological order to focus on his goals and experience instead.

The new approach changed everything and Seth went from practically no responses to 40 interviews in 30 days.

Specifically, Seth applied to positions with three different approaches:

1) Using LinkedIn to quickly apply to many general openings, applying for anything regardless of experience level or language requirements to get practice applying and see what “sticks”.

2) He made a list of companies he would love to work for. Then he took the time to contact hiring managers directly and fill out detailed applications. He strategically only took the time to fill out customized applications for positions he truly cared about. He could only complete 2-3 of these types of applications a day.

3). He networked on LinkedIn by reaching out to people in the industry, at companies he wanted to work for, and those in positions he was interested in.

After 2 months of focused job applications and 9 months total after graduating, Seth secured his new job as an entry level Software Engineer in July.

What have you discovered about yourself through this journey?

“I really am capable of doing the things I set out to do. Also, moving forward is more important than waiting for the right time. I originally signed up to start the bootcamp in April of 2020, but everything hit the fan on lockdowns. I enrolled a year earlier.”

What advice do you have for people who are thinking about attending a bootcamp, but haven't yet registered?

"If you’re thinking about taking a coding bootcamp, and learning to code is something you’re serious about, honestly do exactly what I did: take the Web Development Fundamentals course. It’s extraordinarily affordable for what you get out of it. I need safe decisions. I have 4 kids. It needed to be safe, and it was."

What advice do you have for people who have already started the bootcamp and they are just about to finish Bootstrap?

“I would say, it’s okay to be overwhelmed. It may not make sense now, but it will eventually. Keep going. And that’s what a career in development is all about. The guys I’m around, listening to their conversations, they’re still saying things like, “how would you do this.” The career is figuring out problems as you go.”

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Samantha Anderson

Marketing Manager

Part Illustrator, part Graphic Designer, and part Digital Marketer—with a sprinkle of sales savvy and a dash of empathy. I'm all about using my creativity to craft captivating stories through both illustration and writing. When I'm not at my computer, you'll find me drawing nature inspired patterns and portraits on my other favorite screen: my iPad. To keep myself inspired (and to get away from my slight tech addiction) I garden, golf, and go on nature walks with my dog and cat leading the way.