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Quitting, Jumping, Coding

Tori Wood, Mar, 20 2016 | 2 min read


Two and a half months ago, I was slightly terrified. I had just left my stable job as an actuary at a well-known, respected insurance company to start the full-time coding immersion program with Tech Talent South. As background, I've basically never quit anything. It's not my thing. Quitting my job to jump into a totally new career path wasn't an easy decision, but I was so excited to learn how to build things.

I was exposed to writing code through my work as an actuary. I frequently used SQL and SAS to pull and analyze data. I developed an obsession with using VBA in Excel to automate tasks. I realized fairly quickly that these were the parts of my job I enjoyed the most. They also only took up around 20% of my time on a good day. I wanted to find a job that would allow me to use those skills most of the time.

I started teaching myself web development with books and online courses. I found myself getting pulled in a lot of different directions. Anyone who has tried to teach themselves web development knows there is so much to learn, and I wanted to learn it all! As a result, I got frustrated with what felt like slow progression. I needed structure in my learning path. I had looked into other bootcamp programs, but they weren't feasible for me financially and they weren't local.

I heard about TTS at exactly the right time. I wouldn't have to move, the cost was much more reasonable than other bootcamps, and they were teaching the languages I was interested in learning. I had some (pretty limited) exposure to Ruby and Rails before the program started. Because of the fragmented way I'd been attempting to teach myself, I felt like there were a lot of loose ends floating around. After a week or two with TTS, those ends started to connect. It was a great feeling.

Over the next six weeks, I felt like my knowledge was increasing exponentially. There were certainly moments of frustration, but the instructors were very helpful and always available to answer questions. I'm at the point now where I'm aware of just how far I have to go and how much more I need to learn, but I feel prepared to start my career as a web developer thanks to TTS. I never would have progressed this much this quickly without them.

See what Tori has been up to on her GitHub portfolio: http://toriwood.github.io/

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