Jess was one of our ‘Code It Forward’ funded students. This funding made it possible for her take the course, when finances otherwise would not have allowed her to enrol. We caught up with her during the Summer 2019 cohort to find out more about her background, why she chose to enrol on our Bristol based Coding Bootcamp and how she’s been getting on learning to code so far.

What was your background/career before you joined the Coding Bootcamp?

I have a background in EU affairs (politics) having worked in Brussels as well as gained experience in a number of communications-based roles.

Why are you attending the Bootcamp?

To deepen my knowledge, to be taught by experts in the industry and to be surrounded by like-minded individuals who share an interest in tech.

What were your main questions/concerns before joining the  Bootcamp?

As many of my previous roles were analytical in nature, I had concerns that it would be quite a leap for me to overcome: adapting my mindset to think logically and to put my problem-solving skills front and centre.

How does your experience on the Bootcamp now answer those questions/concerns?

Over the course we have been introduced to the back end, new concepts and frameworks which has exposed me to other aspects such as version control that has challenged me to think twice about my approach and rationalise what I am trying to do; taking it step by step to achieve the overall goal. As each week has passed my initial concern has eased as I become ever mindful of how to approach a task in a methodical manner.

What was your coding experience before the Course?

I had dabbled with HTML, CSS, a little bit of JavaScript and JQuery as well as had experience using the Content Management Systems: WordPress and Squarespace

How have you found the Bootcamp so far?

I have found it challenging but also very rewarding. Not a day goes by when I do not look back from where I initially started to remind myself what I have learnt – equally looking forward with interest for what is to come.

What have you enjoyed the most?

WordPress, HTML, CSS/Sass, Laravel and to my surprise I have also enjoyed managing databases with MySQL. The organised person in me also appreciates the version control of Git.

What have you found the most challenging?

Striking a balance between working through a problem on your own and using your notes and knowing when to take a break or ask for help. If you have been staring at it too long you may not notice a simple syntax error. Breaks are definitely your friend. I also find the omnipresence of JavaScript exciting but also a little daunting.

How would you describe the support on the Bootcamp?

From day one you cannot fault the support. From the teachers, assistant to the 1:1 sessions it has all been helpful to gauge my progression as well as to hear feedback of where I can improve.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of attending our Coding Bootcamp in Bristol?

I would keep an open mind as you never know what may interest you. We all come from different backgrounds so there is a niche for everyone to contribute, learn and share. Be kind to yourself when it does not all come at once; absorbing a myriad of concepts can be intense but if you do the course preparation it will put you in good stead for what is to come.

What role are you looking for after the Bootcamp? Where do you see yourself in the future?

I am keeping an open mind in terms of a role after the Coding Fellowship although I am currently leaning towards working with WordPress. The community looks really welcoming and with so many events held in Bristol, the UK and beyond. There seems to be ample opportunity to engage and learn from others which really appeals to me. Ideally in the future I would like to see myself thriving in a diverse team that encourages self development, fosters creativity and that will challenge me daily. I would also like to be thoroughly engaged in community events like a do_action hackathon which harnesses the power of WordPress for good.

We have been running Bristol Coding Bootcamps for 4 years! We welcome anyone with a learning attitude. Find out more about our Bootcamp here and get in touch with any queries!