Why I switched to Web Development

It wasn’t an easy decision to make. But I’ve never been happier. I decided to switch my career to Web Development for several reasons:

– I was experiencing a growing lack of fulfillment in my previous occupation, since I was in more of a managerial role and not as hands-on with production
– Web development is an in-demand skill
– It’s a well respected profession – web developer’s are like the tech industry’s rock stars! (okay, that might be an exaggeration)
– On a personal level, it’s important to understand the foundations of technology, which we interact with every day

I did some of my own research before selecting an institution to learn at. One of my friends, who worked as technical recruiter for a few years pointed out that, in his experience, the best and most qualified candidates come out of the Flatiron School (I can see why!).

Previously, I worked in multiple roles at a small digital agency in Manhattan. Ascending from Digital Marketing Coordinator to Project Manager and then finally to Operations Manager, I realized that while I enjoyed my job, something was missing. As many PMs will point out, the role of Project Manager is a mostly thankless (although incredibly important) job – when everything goes right, the team is congratulated and when things go wrong, you’re the first on the firing line. I enjoyed working with clients, planning and executing projects, and managing our teams but it felt like I wasn’t hands on enough. I would jump at any opportunity to get my hands dirty with the technical work, whether it was editing some HTML/CSS, configuring email, or setting up hosting for clients.

I like building things and solving problems. I’ve always been fascinated by technology and understanding how things work: I built my own computer, do a number of my own automotive repairs, and rig things together when I need to solve a problem. I’m also lazy and while I don’t believe in cutting corners, I do believe in finding the best and most efficient way to accomplish something – even if that means developing a new system to automate something for me (like an Excel spreadsheet with automatic validations and data calculations). Combine these three things, and it seemed like a career switch to web development was inevitable.

I considered a career in Web Development many months ago but hesitated to actually pursue it. There was a lot of risk involved. What if I’m not any good at it? How will I support myself if I’m not working? Will I be able to find a job when I finish? 4 months in, I’m more than halfway done with Full Stack Web Development course and am confident in my abilities when I finish. Every day I’m amazed at my own capabilities and all the incredible things I’ve done to reach this point.

The first public application that I built – the Steam Upcoming CLI Gem – sealed it for me. I built this program from scratch and would be able to share it with other people. Two months ago I had no idea I would be able to create something like that and didn’t have the faintest idea how to build it. It’s not magic – but it’s certainly not easy either!

I enjoy web development because the possibilities are almost infinite. Knowing how to code allows me to make my thoughts and ideas a reality. While I still have a long way to go in my web development journey (even after Flatiron School) I’m glad I made the decision to switch to web development, and I’m excited to see where this career path takes me.

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