I took 23 Code Street’s very first Web Development Foundation course; in fact, this time last year I was just about halfway through it and, to be totally honest, I’m still trying to get my head around how much coding has changed my life.
When I signed up for the course, I knew nothing about code. I was curious but also very unsure of whether I’d be any good at it. I had absolutely no aspirations of working within the tech industry afterwards, mostly because I had a preconceived notion that it definitely wasn’t for me. My main reasons for deciding to take the course were that I saw it as a distraction from other things going on in my life, as something that could be a fun way to fill my summer and that maybe I’d get to meet some nice people.
Within weeks of starting the course though, and much to my surprise, I found myself enjoying it immensely. I would go home after and try everything again on my own, not because I was expected to, but because I wanted to. I had found something I really enjoyed! As the weeks passed and my knowledge grew, I realised that not only did I enjoy coding; I was actually quite good at it.
It’s so logical, it seems to fit the way my mind works perfectly. At the same time it’s also very creative; for the first time I was designing things, making things pretty and I didn’t feel like perfectionism was holding me back. The natural perfectionist in me was a huge help actually. You need to be precise when coding. Planning ahead and having a clear direction saves time and is a huge help in writing good code. For the first time in a long time, I was in my element.
The day the course finished, I felt proud of what I had achieved in those three months, but also devastated that it was all over. I didn’t want our little group to disband, for the lovely, safe learning environment that is 23 Code Street to be gone. I was worried that, as is often the case in this fast paced world, I’d lose touch with all the wonderful people I met.
As the title suggests however, this didn’t happen. Not only did I stay in touch with 23 Code Street, I was invited back to sit in on the next cohort’s classes and then to join the team as an assistant teacher for the third cohort.
I adore working alongside new students, I love seeing people learn and fall in love with the process, just as I had. Teaching has also meant that my knowledge has really been solidified as teaching others requires you to have a complete understanding yourself, and that has really helped to push me further and has expanded my knowledge tenfold. It’s showed me that as well as loving coding, I also really love teaching and sharing this world with others.
I’ve enjoyed every step of my journey with 23 Code Street; my passion and hard work has been rewarded in a way I’ve never experienced before. What started out as curiosity and a mere distraction, has become a new direction in my life. The very essence of 23 Code Street is to break down the barriers for women getting into tech both here in the UK and in India, and to join in on the much needed global push to diversify the tech industry. Learning to code has changed my life and I’m doing my very best to help change the lives of others with this new knowledge.