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Emily's Experience Learning to Code in Wilmington

These past eight weeks have been a whirlwind.

Let me clarify, they have been challenging, frustrating, and barrier-breaking in the best way possible. I am a recent college graduate living in the coastal town of Wilmington, NC. Since graduation, I have found myself working in sales and compliance. And while I was making my way into the real world I had a vague interest in coding. It seemed like a whole new world to me that needed to be explored at some point in my post-grad career.

At my last job, I received the opportunity to attend HubSpot’s Inbound conference in Boston, MA. During this time I had the pleasure of watching Reshma Saujani speak about her company, Girls Who Code. Not only did Reshma fill her talk with inspiring stories about young girls getting the opportunity to code at these summer programs, she also repeatedly expressed the need for women coders. I am a bit of a feminist myself in the sense that women are strong and deserve equal rights. Without going into politics, I took what Reshma had to say and let it marinate in my brain. I looked into free courses such as Code Academy and had my first taste of what the coding world was all about.

Fast forward to my present job in Wilmington, I am still curious about coding and I have the free time and resources to look into taking a course. Then, I find my connection for Tech Talent South by chance on LinkedIn. After completing my sign-up just days before the program started, I am excited but rightfully nervous to embark on this journey.

Let me say that this has been a great experience for me. Not only was I surrounded by others who had an equal or greater desire to code, but they were also asking thought-provoking questions and treating this Bootcamp seriously– while still having fun. The first few weeks were filled with learning the basics. We went over jQuery, HTML and CSS. Each language has their own flavor and distinct look and feel. However, you can take what you learn from one language to another. There are subtle distinctions that make it easy to jump around languages. It is intimidating at first glance but once our instructor, Chris, went into explaining each language it was like a very cool puzzle.

We had bumps in the road of course, code breaking and not cooperating with us, but that is also what makes coding interesting. The homework forced us to focus in on where we were having trouble and overcome confusions and missteps. We created our own mock Twitter, a weather app, and more. From here I will use what I learned at TTS to go deeper into the coding world. I have an interest in website-building and app-building, as well as the design-end of the coding spectrum. I am excited to see where coding will take me but more importantly I am thankful for this opportunity and that I was able to dive into the world of coding. Anything that is a little scary is always worth it.

All the best,

Emily

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