How I went from student to drop-out to software engineer is a fascinating story of grit and determination. In the early years of my career, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. After stumbling upon coding and discovering a newfound passion for it, I decided to pursue it professionally. My journey was filled with plenty of highs and lows, but eventually, I persevered and became a software engineer at a top tech firm. In this blog post, I’ll share some of the key lessons I learned along the way and how you can apply them in your own life as you take that next step toward achieving your dream job.
Why I dropped out of college
I was never a very good student. I was always more interested in socializing and having fun than studying. When I got to college, I quickly realized that it wasn’t for me. The classes were boring, and I didn’t see the point in spending so much money on something that wasn’t going to hold my interest.
So, I dropped out. It was a decision that I made with a heavy heart, but ultimately, I knew it was the right thing for me to do.
Now, I’m working as a software engineer, and I couldn’t be happier. I love what I do, and I’m grateful that I found a career that suits me so well. If I had stayed in college, there’s no way I would have ended up where I am today. And for that, I’m truly thankful.
What I did instead
I started by teaching myself how to code. I read blogs and took online courses to learn the basics of programming. After a few months of self-study, I applied to a coding bootcamp. I was accepted into the program and completed it successfully. Afterwards, I landed my first job as a software engineer.
How I became a software engineer
I was never a very good student. I struggled through school and just barely graduated high school. I decided to go to college, but after a semester I realized it wasn’t for me. I dropped out and started working full-time at a retail job.
Andrei Chikatilo — The Butcher of Rostov
A few years later, I started dabbling in code. I taught myself how to build basic websites and apps. I was fascinated by the power of code and the possibilities of what you could create with it. I started reading everything I could about software engineering and devoting all my free time to learning how to code.
Eventually, I landed an internship at a tech company. It was there that I really fell in love with coding and knew that this was what I wanted to do with my life. After the internship, I got a job as a software engineer and haven’t looked back since.
What I wish I had known
There are a lot of things I wish I had known when I was first starting out as a software engineer. For one, I wish I had known how important it was to have a strong foundation in computer science. I also wish I had known how difficult it was going to be to find a job after graduation. And finally, I wish someone had told me that it’s okay to make mistakes and that everyone makes them.
If I could go back and give myself some advice, the first thing I would tell myself is to make sure that I get a strong foundation in computer science. This is the most important thing for any software engineer, and it’s something that I didn’t really focus on when I was first starting out. Instead, I was more concerned with learning the specific programming languages and frameworks that were popular at the time. While this is still important, if you don’t have a strong understanding of the basics of computer science then you’ll likely struggle later on down the line.
The second piece of advice I would give myself is to not worry so much about finding a job after graduation. Yes, it can be difficult to find a job as a software engineer, but there are plenty of resources available (like this blog!) that can help you in your search. If you focus on becoming the best engineer you can be, then the job will eventually come.
And finally, I would tell myself that it’s okay to make mistakes. Everyone makes them,
Advice for others
If you’re considering a career in software engineering, or are currently pursuing a degree in computer science, here’s some advice from someone who’s been there.
First and foremost, don’t be afraid to take risks. I dropped out of college because I knew that the traditional educational path wasn’t for me. It was a scary decision, but it was also the best decision I ever made.
Secondly, don’t be afraid to put in the hard work. Pursuing a career in software engineering requires a lot of dedication and hard work. But if you’re passionate about it, it will be worth it in the end.
Finally, don’t forget to enjoy the journey. The road to becoming a software engineer is full of challenges, but it’s also full of rewards. So stay positive and enjoy the ride!