Do not be afraid to try, or How I became a programmer at the age of well over 18

    When you hear the phrase “junior developer”, you probably represent a young guy in his last years of university or a recent graduate - but certainly not a 30-year-old woman with a small child who had previously taught at the university for several years and was also far from development, like Maya Plisetskaya from weightlifting. Only the lazy did not ask me questions: “Why did you leave the position of assistant professor for a junior developer?”, “How did you learn to program?”, “How did you look for work?”, “Why did you suddenly decide to become a programmer?”, Etc. . etc.

    Here I will try to answer them in this post.

    The IT world is enchantingly beautiful. Often these are good working conditions, interesting projects, the possibility of remote work, social package, friendly offices with tennis tables, Xbox ... but to whom I tell you - you already know everything :). At the time of the sharp jump in the dollar and the euro, the Internet was simply teeming with little words: "I am looking for a pretty programmer who receives in euros." “Have you seen the course?” Cute is not necessary! "))

    If you have a great career that suits you, great! But if you think that you need to decisively change something, and you, like me, are attracted by the development, it’s very difficult to go over to those “decisive actions”. Especially when the age exceeded 18 for a long time and you didn’t just graduate from a university majoring in programming, but you hardly remember what year you graduated from it ... Something looms in my head like “well, this is only for very smart "," This is only for boys "," at 28-30 it’s kind of too late to start programming, "" this is not my fairy tale "...

    How did it all start?

    Turning the next circle with a pram in a small square near the metro and simultaneously thinking about the meaning of life, the universe and in general, I suddenly realized that I didn’t want, I didn’t want to go back to my work at all ... Not that I didn’t like working at a university - in it, as in any work, has its pros and cons. But the thought was always present that it was not mine. Yes, I liked lecturing, but not enough to earn a living. It's like a cake: once a week it’s nice to eat, but for breakfast, lunch and dinner - already too much.

    So what should I do? Financial mathematics, I thought. Still, to some extent, I know mathematics - Ph.D. after all. She opened online lectures on a relevant topic: in a calm, monotonous voice, the professor of each derivative gave his own name and continued to introduce more and more new terms ... around the fifteenth, I realized that I was about to fall asleep and that financial mathematics, although very popular and probably an interesting topic, but still let someone else do it.

    How did you study?

    At some point, I stumbled upon a course from the series "programming for dummies" from Duke University (generally for such "lovers" of technical literature, like me, online courses are just a godsend). I will not dissemble, at the university I was thinking whether to start developing. But then all my endeavors were limited to going to the library: I took Straustrup, brought home - and gently put it on the shelf.

    “Well,” I thought now, “we’ll listen to this programming for dummies, at least for training English.” And then I was addicted. With the same interest and inspiration with which my daughter now watches Fixikov, I watched the lectures of this course. It seems to be familiar things - the same translations of color photography in black and white, auto-typing, and many others - were opened to me from a new perspective, from the developer's side.

    Then I asked for a specialization in Coursera in Java OOP as a birthday present, which surprised my loved ones a bit, but as they say, no matter what the child was amusing.

    In general, if it seems to you that my decree had as if dofiga of free time, and you are working now and you are definitely not up to the development of a new profession, then I hasten to upset you (or make you happy). Maternity leave, although called vacation, is not at all. Moreover, I do not belong to the category of superwomen, with one hand stirring the soup on the stove, the second - solving practical programming problems, the third feeding the baby, and the fourth wiping “surprises” after it. Of course, my relatives helped me a lot, doing the kid while I understood Java, for which many thanks to them! But sometimes I had to finish something in the courses, when the whole family was already watching at least a third dream.

    In general, it was a quick story. It took me a total of 1.5 years to startner and intermediate courses in Java. There were weeks and months when it was not possible to listen to a single lecture. At such moments, it was an extraordinary temptation to leave the race and quit. But either the love of programming (and I really hope that it is it), or the toad, strangling with already paid courses, or maybe all together, returned me back to duty. Otherwise, the training itself went pretty well: I successfully coped with all the tasks and from the moment I finished my specialization right up to the first interview, I thought that I knew Java very well)).

    How did I search and find a job?

    Well, it's pretty commonplace, you say: a resume on hh, you respond to vacancies and go for interviews. But there are not so many initial positions, and during interviews it often turns out that Java alone is not enough, you need to know at least git, maven and many more scary words)). Against the general background, a job-internship from Jet Infosystem for recent graduates was very attractive, which said: if you pass the qualifying test, we will teach you a lot. And, although my year of graduation did not fit according to formal criteria, I still decided to send my resume, and whatever happens.

    And it was like this: first a test for theory, then practical tasks. If everything is successful, then invite to a 2-week intensive in Java. If after that, too, everything is fine, you remain in the company for an internship. The intensive program was interesting and intense. We learned a lot about both Java and maven and git.

    The theoretical part was harmoniously intertwined with practical tasks that were tested by a whole team of developers, giving feedback what should be improved and why. The last two days we were divided into groups, and we worked on the final project, which had to be done on time and defended, that is, to explain why such a solution to the problem was chosen. I also liked that after the intensiveness, when I stayed for the internship, there was no feeling of “alone, quite alone”, because A few more people passed with me.

    I have been working in the company for about 1.5 years and, in general, I continue to study, but already at more advanced courses. I won’t discover America for you, if I say that in general developers have to constantly learn, but our profession is good: learning a new one promotes the formation of new neural connections in the brain, which, by the way, is the prevention of many senile diseases (if the topic is about the brain and learning you are interested, I recommend Barbara Oakley courses on Coursera :))

    Instead of a conclusion

    Of course, I do not urge everyone to immediately quit their jobs and go to the developers. Maybe you have been a developer for a long time, and you are drawn to management or somewhere else. Or are you mom on maternity leave and doubt whether to return to the profession. Either you have chosen a specialty on the principle “a friend went there too” or “parents insisted”, but something completely different is interesting for you ...

    Try it! Maybe it will not become a new profession for you and you will understand that the former is much closer to you. But certainly it will save you from regrets about missed opportunities. Perhaps now is one of the best times in history when you can try and learn something new, without even leaving your home. And this is also the merit of the IT industry in which we work :)

    Madina Deryagina, junior developer of Jet Infosystems

    PS: by the way, if you want to learn about how you can quickly get into IT, read an interview with Alexander Sadykov about the occupation, training and growth of functional testers in our company. And I advise you to periodically check the Internship section on the Jet Infosystems website.

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