Marcy Silverman recently graduated from Alchemy and within weeks landed a role as a Software Engineer at ESRI that she absolutely loves. Coming from a background with no experience in coding, she evolved into a great software developer. While still in the program she also showcased her technical skill-set by building a beautiful portfolio site and further positioned herself with the companies she wanted to work with through the guidance of our Career Services. She identified the companies she wanted to work for, networked, and nurtured her connections to help meet the people within those companies. Marcy’s experience greatly exemplifies how Alchemy students can quickly land roles that help businesses fill their need for immediate contribution on teams.
Marcy works on a great team and is doing work that challenges her everyday. It’s great to see her thriving so quickly after leaving our program, and we’re so grateful for how much she gives back to the community too. Her story, which you can read in her own words below, is a true testament to how a positive attitude and hard work can compliment your career change in a very positive way. We miss her energy at Alchemy and can’t wait to see her career as a software developer continue to flourish for years to come.
1. What were you doing for work before attending Alchemy?
Before I attended Alchemy Code Lab, I was bouncing around jobs which included: law firm, consulting firm, and finally a startup. During my time working at those places, I knew that I wasn’t happy doing that type of work and I need a serious shift in my life.
3. Had you considered other coding schools? What made you choose Alchemy over the others if so?
I looked at other coding schools, but when I saw the school space, curriculum, and met Marty and Megan, I knew that Alchemy was the only choice for me. The admission process displayed that the school was serious about what they do, and they wanted to make sure that each student would be a good fit but most importantly would be successful. That attention to each potential student proved to me that this wasn’t just another code school.
4. When did you graduate, and can you expand upon your job search a bit? How long did you actually work on landing a job?
I graduated from Alchemy in April of 2019. I actually started preparing for the job hunt well before I graduated. During my time at the school, I channeled a lot of energy into building my network, I was encouraged to go to meetups and hackathons and through that I was given amazing advice on how to hit the ground running when I graduated my program. Some of the things I did that really helped me when it came to the job hunt was making sure that I did these things before the end of the program: networking, making sure that my resume was polished, and having a presentable and personable portfolio site that displayed my projects and abilities. I applied to as many jobs as possible, regardless of how much experience that those posting requested. After 3 weeks of interviewing at various places, I was offered a position at the current company that I am now.
5. What is your new position?
My position is at Esri as a Software Engineer for our Developers Experience Team.
6. Can you tell me about the types of technologies and languages you are using in your new role and did Alchemy prepare you well to learn/use them?
7. Why are you excited about it, and how is it going to impact your life?
I am excited about my new role because I feel that I am opening a new chapter of my life where I am starting my career. All my previous jobs never felt like that, and I know that I will continue to learn and grow as a person. It’s so empowering to know that I can provide myself the life that I have always wanted while also enjoying the work that I do. This has been one of the best decisions of my life so far.
9. What will you miss most about being at Alchemy every day?
The people! I miss seeing everybody’s faces and the camaraderie that comes with going through this journey together. It was comforting to have a community of people who want the best for you and can relate on the shared experience of coming from a non-traditional pathway to tech. The school really does care about their students and their mission to bring more diversity and inclusion to tech shows that they want to create a positive change to an industry that they are passionate about.
10. If there’s anything you would tell someone considering an education to be a software developer, what would it be?
Going through this program changed me as a person, and without a doubt was the most challenging yet rewarding thing I have done. Before considering an education to become a developer, I really encourage people to consider why they want to become a software developer and if this a profession that you are willing to work hard for as well as having the hunger and excitement to always keep learning. This is a really rewarding area of work, but it can also be difficult. If you decide to become a software developer, you need to have the ambition and drive to do what it takes, even if that means you are uncomfortable and feel like you aren’t getting it, but if you put in the effort you will see the reward.
11. Was career services helpful for you after graduation?
Career services was indispensable after my graduation. Job hunting is never fun no matter what area of work you are in, but with Shannon, I knew I was in good hands. The advice and tips that were given to me helped me get the interviews and meet the people that I did. Shannon has an insight of the industry that is unparalleled with anyone else. I distinctly remember going to a resume critique workshop, and I had brought my resume that Shannon recently coached me on, and the recruiter told me that my resume was one of the best resumes he has seen in a while and that if he was a hiring manager, he would call me in a heartbeat. Even after you finish the program, Shannon is there with you helping you on your cover letter, interview questions, resume, and much more. Everything she tells and advises you to do, DO IT!