What Are You Doing?

14 Feb 2015

Hello, world!!

It's been a long time coming, but I am finally learning to code!

I can remember the first time I felt the urge. The year was 2005 (or so). I figured out how to change the background and text colors of my MySpace page. Never had I felt more victorious.

But the internet was young, as was I, and I didn't feel compelled to build anything of my own. Those kinds of ideas just weren't brewing in me... yet. It wasn't until I hit the working world that I started to identify holes that I knew I could fill, if only I had the right tools.

In 2011, Amazon hired me to help launch a new flash-sale site, MyHabit, which would compete against online retailers like Gilt and RueLaLa. Although I was hired as a Buyer, I found myself obsessed with helping my team become more efficient in planning and building our sales, and I spend a disproportionate amount of time building Excel-based workflow tools. Although I loved working with product, I wanted to be optimizing workflows all the time. Which led me to Razorfish.

There, I worked on several web development projects as a Functional Analyst. It was my primary responsibility to identify business requirements and ensure that all requirements were accounted for in the final design. Effectively, I worked closely with UX and Visual Designers to deliver a functional product. Consequently, I also spent a lot of time doing QA before a product was delivered, and thereby worked hand-in-hand with developers to identify bugs and implement changes.

These experiences were wildly educational for me and opened my eyes to e-commerce, software, agency life, Agile methodology, and much more. Most of all, working alongside brilliantly smart humans showed me what passion looks like in practice. But for everything I learned at each of these jobs, all the while I was contributing to project teams: brainstorming, iterating, coordinating... something was missing. I wanted to be the builder. Not the hand holder, not the documenter, the builder! Which brought me to The Flatiron School.

What is Flatiron? It's a 12-week intensive web development bootcamp that will spit me out ready to code in a professional setting. It's a community of 29 other career-changers (and some recent college grads) who are driven to learn a new hard skill in an environment that encourages teamwork over competition. It's a place that believes that writing code is empowering and with enough dedication, you can do it. Yes, you! I'm only 2 weeks in, and I already feel wholeheartedly that it's changing my life.

So stick around if you want to hear my ramblings, breakthroughs, complaints, and general geekery. This is going to be FUN.