Training "according to the Brazilian system"

    Hello dear!
    I want to share with the community my thoughts on the topic raised in recent posts ( Wolf days , Butterfly effect and Freedom or fear. Make your choice ).
    Probably should start a little from afar.
    In 1997, I graduated from the Faculty of Biology of the Far Eastern State University and went to work as a biologist. I was bored of sitting in the laboratory and for nine years I was joyfully running around the taiga, studying various interesting animals. And before that, it was interesting to me that I didn’t particularly bother with the fact that they paid little at that job, to say the least.

    In 2006, he moved to St. Petersburg, did not immediately search for a job by profession, but found - in 2007 he worked for the Institute of Urban Studies, participated in the creation of the General Plan of the Tver and the Development Plan of the Arkhangelsk Region, and since November 2007, he joined the Russian Antarctic expedition as an ecologist. . I spent more than a year in Antarctica, studied penguins ... The salary was tolerable, although it could have been bigger.

    And so, during the wintering season, different clever thoughts began to come into my head - from the category of “what next?” I no longer wanted to go on an expedition, and I did not want to sit on the dull budgetary salary of a biologist at the institute even more.
    At this moment, not without the help of friends, I was visited by the idea that it might be worth changing the field of activity altogether, since in biology everything is so sad with financing.

    I had a couple of DVDs with Linux distributions with me, which contained both programming languages ​​and documentation (there was no free Internet access at our station). And the first part of the Merlezon Ballet began - first the databases (the benefit of them could be built for the real thing - to process the field materials I collected), then the interfaces to these databases.

    As a result, at the time of the end of wintering, I, as a self-taught person, created a real PostgreSQL database and its replica in MySQL, and wrote simple interfaces (data input, modification, deletion, output with all kinds of conditions) for working with these databases in C, Perl , Python, PHP, and Ruby (pure Ruby, I still had no idea about rails).

    But that same fear, which has already been repeatedly mentioned, repeatedly brought to my inner gaze the same line from the published vacancies: “It takes a programmer for ... with work experience of 3 years ...” I have experience working in extreme environmental conditions 10 years, and with programming experience - some garbage ...

    I returned at the end of May 2009, received vacation pay and immediately began discussions with relatives and friends about what to do next. My good friends immediately advised me not to worry about the lack of work experience, but simply to write a resume where to indicate, firstly, 10 years of experience working with databases (it’s true, in general, I used MS Access all the past years to process field materials), secondly, add a year of Web development experience there (did you do the interface to the database in PHP? did. So write, do not mislead people), thirdly, add it to the key ones words often found in job descriptions are magical, apparently a bunch of HTML + CSS + JQuery + AJAX. So I did. And he answered all the vacancies published on the Headhunter of one well-known site.

    Quite quickly, responses began to arrive. They, as a rule, either contained additional questions (“Do you know how to do this?”, “And how do you do with that?”), Or test tasks. In any case, a day or two of intense reading of everything that can be reached, and I could confidently answer all the questions that were in the letter.

    A month later, one office called me for an interview, just seeing my code. As a result, they did not take me there and the marathon continued. Jobs-tests-study-failures-vacancies-tests-study-Hurray! Job interview! - refusals ...
    After the fifth interview, I was hired. Although they thought and doubted for a long time, it was the ability and willingness to learn and do it quickly that decided everything.
    The entire job search took a little less than 3 months. There were enough polar vacation pay until the first salary.

    The quality of such training can be judged by the following facts:
    1) the probationary period passed normally;
    2) recently I was once again raised the salary.

    Honestly, changing your field so abruptly (from biology to programming) at 34 is not easy. But really, as you can see.

    Now I have RubyOnRails on the agenda, since our organization has started an interesting project using ROR. We move on, read, write, learn ...

    Do not be afraid to change, do not be afraid to pass for upstart, do not be afraid of failures of employers (investors, beautiful girls, etc.). Do it!

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