Robin Miller graduated from Alchemy’s Career Track in January of this year after finishing the intensive coursework, working on Full Stack projects, and being challenged to learn and grow professionally. When he was done, he put his skills to work as a teaching assistant, helping newer students work through and understand tough concepts. He then went on to work in our AppLab where graduates build really cool apps for Portland entrepreneurs using tools like React, NodeJS & Firebase. This gives our graduates some real, hands-on experience as they hone their coding skills and look for their first position post graduation.
He recently went on to work at PayClearly as a Front End Developer. As much as we miss him here in our space daily, we are very happy for Robin! The education and work he did here at Alchemy prepared him to start at a job that pays more than double what he’s made at any other time in his life previous to this. It’s a personal and professional game changer for him and we can’t wait to see how he grows through his career as a software developer.
We recently asked Robin a few questions. See what he has to say about his Alchemy experience:
1. What were you doing for work before attending Alchemy?
I was an office manager at a (small and very slow) video production company. Before that, I was a lift operator at a ski resort.
2. What made you decide to take classes at Alchemy?
3. Had you considered other coding schools?
Absolutely. I did a ton of code school research. Alchemy was one of my top 3, all of which I interviewed- the other two were Epicodus and PDX Code Guild.
4. What is your new position?
My official job title is Front End Developer :)
5. Why are you excited about your new position, and how is it going to impact your life?
Oh god everything! The starting pay was very generous and this will be the first time in my adult life I'm not constantly freaking out about money. Another first for me is that this is an actual career with a very real opportunity to grow. I'll be joining an awesome team/project, and I'm going to learn a ton in a very short time span! Plus coding is legitimately fun for me, so I'm really excited to finally be able to make a living off of it. It's going to be a huge quality of life improvement!
6. What did you love about working in App Lab, and did you learn a lot by doing so?
Absolutely! Being able to work on a real life app will make you learn really fast. Our app was a blast to work on. It used different tech than the standard MERN stack I was used to, so it was a great experience to solve problems with a different toolkit. Plus, my team was an absolute joy to work with! I've never had a more pleasant experience working in a group.
7. What will miss most about being at Alchemy every day?
I'll really miss the community. Everybody wants you to succeed here! It's my favorite workspace.
8. If there’s anything you would tell someone considering an education to be a software developer, what would it be?
- You'll get the most out of code school if you're able to have no other obligations. When I was a student, my life was 100% about learning code.
- It definitely helps to find programming to be genuinely fun. Start a healthy codewars addiction early.
- Take regular breaks.
- After graduating, be disciplined about continuing to work on code. Treat it as a job. Code knowledge leaves your brain quickly when it's not being used.
If you are interested in learning more about our program or applying, we start a new session every quarter. Read about our course descriptions here, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions. You can also apply today if you fill out our online application (will not commit you to attend, but it starts the process to do so!) We also have an open house every Thursday at 12:30PM & a social hour on the last Friday of each month. Join us! Everyone is welcome!