October 1, 2020
We interviewed student Olivia Hartwig after their first week of Coding Bootcamp; here's how it went...
I came to BCA after the decision to leave my previous career in ceramics. It is a physically taxing line of work and not always a reliable source of income. I wanted to move into a field that would allow me to exercise my talents in problem solving and community building, and coding seemed like a great fit for both!
One thing I wish I knew before my first week of bootcamp was how clear I would need to be around setting boundaries around my time. I'm fortunate to have a wonderful support network and I have learned the value of balancing coding all day with fun and rest; but at the end of the day, I require much more time to review class materials than I anticipated. Try to prep meals in advance! Ask for help with chores like laundry and dishes! Time is your most valuable resource.
A piece of advice that I am carrying with me is: ask for help! Your cohort, TAs, and instructor are all on the same team. The collective brilliance is astounding! It can be difficult to unlearn independent behaviors, but I always learn more and have a richer experience when I lean on my coding community.
Keeping focused when my mind is full of new information and there is still more lecture left in the day. Before BCA I was working full-time in an environment where I could get up, move around, and switch tasks when hitting a saturation point. This is a big transition, and one I am still navigating.
Asking for help! I set aside my pride and asked for a hand when I was feeling discouraged in class. The class community shared about their own feelings and gave one another encouragement; it was so helpful not to feel alone. The coding I did afterwards was my best that entire week! It's amazing what asking for support can do.