Dane had been an anesthesia technologist at a hospital for three years before deciding he was ready for a career change. He wanted to work in tech, so he chose to learn to code at The Iron Yard in Atlanta. Six weeks after graduating, he landed a job developing apps for RNA Health in Dallas. Here’s Dane’s story, in his own words.
- What were you doing before you decided to attend a code bootcamp?
I was working in the Operating Room at a hospital in Birmingham, Alabama as an Anesthesia Technologist.
The stress of the OR and the non-standard hours are what initially inspired the change but a general interest in the tech scene and the growth in the job market in that space are what ultimately pushed me over the edge as far as making the final decision to attend.
- Tell us about your career path since graduating from The Iron Yard.
I graduated from the Spring Rails cohort at the Atlanta campus and went back to Birmingham to start my job search. I honestly wasn’t in a huge hurry to find a job, I wanted to find the right fit for me, relocation wasn’t an issue, I was willing to work anywhere. I took advantage of The Iron Yard’s connections within the industry and reached out to Campus Directors in a few cities I was interested in working and Caitlin had the perfect opportunity. I am now a developer working at RNA Health in Dallas working on a Rails app aimed at retail pharmacies and I love it. From graduation to my landing a job was about six weeks, a LOT faster than my plan!
- What advice would you give to potential students considering The Iron Yard?
Do all the prework you are assigned before the cohort begins. It is really difficult to work on learning your chosen language as well as working on the very basic parts of it at the same time. I know, that’s what I did and I really struggled at the start. Take some breaks, it is so easy to just work all day 7 days a week but that is a recipe for burnout, and you WILL burn out if you do that. On the job front, don’t be picky, find the right job for you but consider every opportunity equally.
- How have your past educational or work experiences helped you in learning to code/your current job?
In my case since I had been in the healthcare industry for so long my previous work experience was the key to getting my job, not so much my coding skill. I have lots of time to learn and expand my coding knowledge on my own and my employer is extremely invested in my being a long-term, productive developer and provides many opportunities for skill development.
- What surprised you most about attending The Iron Yard?
The pace of the work. It can be very overwhelming at first but as your skills improve so will your ability to handle the pace.
- How do you stay up-to-date with programming techniques?
There are so many resources out there for that. Meet ups, Blogs, YouTube is a great resource, codepen.io, EdX, SO MANY free books, there is so much out there, there is no excuse to not be expanding your skill set.