I enjoy programming because it’s like a big puzzle that you have to solve. I remember as a child, there were these puzzle books mixed in with all of the magazines and tabloids in the grocery checkout stands. I was never good at crossword puzzles and word searches were too easy, but the best were the ones that had logic puzzles where you have a grid and you’re presented with only a few clues.
The first formal training in programming I had was with UC Irvine’s Extension. They offer online courses that certify you in anything from Spa and Management to Legal and Forensic Psychology. I registered for their Mobile Application Development and followed their Android track.
This got me familiar with Java, the Android platform and programming concepts in general. Being able to build working mobile applications and deploy them onto my phone and realizing how painless the process really is motivated me to dive deeper in this world.
After getting certified in Mobile Application Development, I started to look into other programming opportunities I could learn from. CodeAcademy, RubyMonk and CodeSchool were all great assets in learning new languages in a fun interactive way.
Somewhere along the way, as I was really getting into coding, I was introduced to code bootcamps and found out that there were a lot offered in the San Francisco/Bay Area and Los Angeles. Unhappy with the job I had, I was ready to sign up for one, quit my job and pack my bags. I realized it was going to be tougher to completely relocate than I anticipated and came across Bloc. They offer similar immersive bootcamp-style apprenticeships, but are all accessed online from the comfort of your own home. How awesome is that?? You also get one-on-one pair-programming sessions with incredibly knowledgeable mentors to help guide you. This way of learning worked well for me being able to control the speed and fitting in lessons during my free time.