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Student Stories: Ryan Straker

Currently studying Front-end Web Development

Q: Can you share a little about your background?

Before I dove into the world of coding, my career was in property management. Daily, I dealt with issues concerning property repairs and maintenance, coordinating with engineers, handling invoices, and managing customer interactions. To be honest, it wasn’t fulfilling, and I yearned for a change. Computers have always been a natural fit for me; friends and family would often seek my help for tech issues. I spent part of my 20s exploring different career paths, but nothing really stuck until I stumbled upon coding—it's been a quest to find what really clicks for me.

Q: What sparked your interest in learning to code?

It started with a curiosity that gradually developed over time. Sometimes, I’d spend time exploring the 'Inspect Element' feature on web pages, attempting to make sense of the chaos of HTML and CSS that I saw. Through trial and error and a lot of Googling, I began to pick up bits of knowledge. My desire for a more technical understanding of computers and my enjoyment in manipulating them to do what I wanted solidified my interest in coding.

Q: Why did you choose Altcademy, and how has your learning experience been?

The turning point came when I realized I needed structured learning to understand coding from the ground up, which was something I felt free courses weren’t effectively providing. I discovered Altcademy through a top-rated online bootcamp list and decided that a more formal and paid program would benefit me. Altcademy suited my needs as it provided a comprehensive curriculum starting right from the basics.

Q: How do you plan to apply your new coding skills?

I have set a goal for myself to complete Altcademy's full-stack web development program within a year. Once I complete the program and build a solid online presence with a technical portfolio, I'll start looking for job opportunities. Initially, my plan involves remaining flexible about location, applying for positions across the UK, and moving where the work takes me. Long-term, after gaining about five years of industry experience, I'm aiming to start freelancing on the side.

Q: Can you tell us about a project you’re currently excited about?

I'm currently working on creating a skills tracker for myself. While learning JavaScript, I needed a way to keep my HTML and CSS skills sharp. So, the idea is to develop a program that will take inputs like skill descriptions, my confidence level, and how fundamental they are, then it suggests which skills I need to revisit on a given day. It's going to be a personal project, but one that will immensely help me reinforce my learning while practicing real-world programming.

Q: What advice would you give to others considering a career in coding?

From my perspective, learning to code is not just about remembering syntax; it's about understanding concepts and learning how to solve problems. Sometimes it feels daunting, and there are days when a quiz question can take hours to solve. But each hurdle crossed brings a new level of understanding and satisfaction. My advice is to be patient, stay committed, and don’t hesitate to reach out for guidance when you need it.

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STUDENT STORY

"I learned enough to build web applications and tools and was able to use this knowledge to further my career"

STUDENT STORY

"I hope to apply my coding skills to improve websites and user experiences."

STUDENT STORY

"I realized that I enjoy the challenges and that my thought process meshes well with programming"

Meet our Alumni

Going from beginners to professional coders, 85%+ of Altcademy alumni are hired within 6 months after graduation

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Product Lead at YouTube

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