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My Journey into Software Testing and Software Development | Case Study

6 minutes mins read time

By Jordon

This National Careers Week, we here at The Coders Guild want to highlight the journeys and career paths of two of our incredible coaches.
Why do this?

Well, each of these coaches have interesting tales to tell, and if you’re reading this and not sure what direction to take your career, or, you’re not sure how to take the next step to become a software developer or software tester, then hopefully you’ll be able to learn something today that might help you.

First up we’ve got Steve Marks, who is the Curriculum Lead for Software Development, here at The Coders Guild.

But it wasn’t always so, rewind your minds back to the hazed-days of 2020, a time of the pandemics, lockdowns, hoarding of toilet paper, and the rise of working from home. Like many of us around that time, Steve found himself with more time on his hands, so what was he to do?

Well, again, like many of us out there, he decided to throw himself into learning and studying. Nothing too taxing at first. The odd YouTube tutorial and Udemy course here and there. But over a short amount of time, he’d amassed a workable portfolio utilising tools such as freeCodeCamp. Short, little projects, here and there, nothing groundbreaking, but important nonetheless. Because it was time for the next step!
After realising how much he was enjoying coding and the freedom associated with it. He thought, perhaps it was time to turn this into a career. But how do you turn a hobby into a career? When, let’s face it, every job, even entry level positions, want unreasonable levels of experience these days. And for many of us with families and responsibilities, unpaid internships or volunteer work just aren't feasible.

So what's the next best option?

An apprenticeship! A course designed to provide the platform to learn, but also giving the experience so sorely needed in the professional world.

That first step is always the hardest, and since then Steve hasn’t looked back! Going from a self taught bedroom coder to Curriculum Lead for Software Development in under two and a half years. Steve now spends his time coaching the next generation of prospective software developers out there. But why does he do this?
Well I sat down with him, to discuss his journey and to understand a little more about why he became a coach. Check it out below.

Steve wasn’t the only person at The Coders Guild that has an interesting career journey to tell. I also sat down with Kelly Kenyon, one of our coaches, to find out more about her journey as well.

Kelly used to be a high school music teacher, but back in 2021, she wanted to take her career in another direction. Unlike Steve, Kelly didn’t go down the apprenticeship path, as this understandably isn’t a viable option for some, Kelly instead went for a Bootcamp, a short course designed to teach employable skills and get people into their first roles in their new careers. In Kelly’s case, similarly to Steve, she had also been doing some coding herself. And used that basis of knowledge combined with everything she’d learnt on The Coders Guild Bootcamp; Crucial Skills for Software Testers, to land her first junior role, with a recommendation from one of the coaches of the course itself!

So within a few months Kelly had gone from a non-testing role, to a junior software tester. And she hasn’t stopped there! Kelly is now a mid-level Software Tester and an Apprenticeship Coach here at The Coders Guild.

Both Steve and Kelly took an opportunity that was presented to them, and have turned that opportunity into great success. And both now give back to the software testing and software development communities by actively being involved in training the next generation of testing and developing talent. All within only a couple of years.

If you want to hear more about Kelly and Steve’s individual career journey’s from novice to expertise and coaching, or if you just want to hear some advice from people that have taken the short-course and apprenticeship routes, then do check out the video here of their interviews. There is some fantastic insight to be had from both of them.

One of the biggest takeaways from speaking to both Kelly and Steve, is to take the plunge, go for it. If you’re not happy with your current role, then make a change. The onus is on you to do so.

Want to get into a tech role, but don’t know where to start? Well The Coders Guild is here to help you with that! Drop us a message on social media, or send us an email, we’ll endeavour to get you personal advice that will work for your individual circumstances.

We genuinely believe a career in the tech industry is a fantastic career path, and we can help that become the reality for you.

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