The recipe to a start a successful coding career includes the right mix of structure and flexibility

By Chevas Balloun

Last Updated: August 24th 2021

From Retail Stylist to Intern Developer, Sundown Solutions

"I knew that making such a big career change wasn't going to be easy, so I kept pushing through because I knew I wanted to go somewhere where I could have as many opportunities as possible, and being a woman I wanted to try to get into the tech industry and do something a little bit challenging."

This is Emily Kent, a Nucamp Full Stack Bootcamp graduate and now an Intern Developer at Sundown Solutions.

Emily is known for her love of baking among her friends and family.

She has an extensive creative background as a print maker, drawer, baker, and has even earned a fine arts degree.

Life led her to a curated fashion company and her position as a stylist became bland leaving more to be desired.

She wasn't using her creativity like she imagined and ended up just plainly putting clothes into boxes for people.

With no room for growth at her current job, she longed for the pairing of a new career that made her feel inspired.

Getting frustrated by UI/UX issues with the software she was using as a stylist sparked the idea for her to look into coding.

She and her coworkers had given a lot of constructive feedback on the software without any signs of improvement and thought maybe she would enjoy solving similar problems.

The tech industry's growth and high salaries were the most appetizing samples of what learning to code could achieve.

Drawn in by the chance for better opportunities, challenging herself, and exercising her creativity, she was ready to come to the table.

But, without prior experience in tech she wasn't confident enough to teach herself.

Her research was showing that she didn't have enough knowledge to know where to start or what she should be learning.

She wanted structure, a clear goal, and not to waste time.

She needed a step-by-step recipe for how to change careers.

An online bootcamp seemed the best option; especially after the pandemic hit.

Sifting through many bootcamp options, Nucamp was the perfect blend of structure, flexibility, and sense of community for her palate.

The icing on the cake was Nucamp was only a fraction of the price compared to other options.

Already with student debt, Emily didn't want to incur more, plus she wasn't sure if the tech industry was the right course.

The affordable price provided the means to try a taste-test.

Not one to sugar coat anything, Emily recounted the difficulty and challenges of her coding journey.

Nevertheless, she started with zero background knowledge, yet still succeeded.

Even though she second guessed herself every week, she persevered knowing from the start a big career change wasn't going to be easy.

She kept pushing through the difficulties of starting something from scratch and it started making sense as she kept working at it.

Emily made sure to have the right mind set and was willing to see where the whole process was going to take her.

"I was a little worried, as to why [Nucamp's] prices were so low, but once I dug in and found out more information it actually was the right choice for me. Only having live classes on Saturday mornings and being self paced during the week was a huge draw for me."

Describe your job search process.

Emily had a previous connection with the company she is now interning at.

When they found out she was going to learn coding they suggested she intern with them and she jumped on the offer.

She was able to start working as an Intern Developer as soon as she graduated and is now building her portfolio rebuilding and redesigning the company's product website while also helping with IT support.

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

"Do it because 6 months later you don't want to be thinking “I should have done it." Stop thinking of doing things and start doing things. You could be a developer in 6 months. You can teach yourself. Do a little of that to see if you like it, or do the Web Development Fundamentals Bootcamp to see if you like coding."

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

"You might not get it the first go, make sure you go through it. It will go fast, but go back and try to understand every process. You're not going to get the details you need the first time through."

Chevas Balloun

Director of Marketing & Brand

Chevas has spent over 15 years inventing brands, designing interfaces, and driving engagement for companies like Microsoft. He is a practiced writer, a productivity app inventor, board game designer, and has a builder-mentality drives entrepreneurship.