From Finance to Full-Stack: How Learning Code Revamped A Paper Pusher’s Career


Will took a chance on General Assembly when he enrolled in our Web Development Immersive to learn fullstack coding skills. He is now exploring brand new job opportunities where he can ABL: Always Be Learning. He has shared his journey with us to inspire others. Enjoy!

What were you doing before you came to GA?

I was working in finance (10 years of experience), a field where I’ve spent my entire career, but it was not where I wanted to be.

What motivated you to enroll in our Web Development Immersive (WDI)?

Ever since I moved to the Bay Area a couple of years ago, I had dreamed of changing careers and working in tech. I thought enrolling in WDI would give me the start that I wanted.

In my case, it was the right time for my family. I had just gotten married, and we scheduled our reception and honeymoon for May, which would give me a perfect window of time for WDI January.

Why us over other bootcamps?

GA made me feel comfortable. After the info session presentation, I wandered around the commons. Everyone who was working seemed very friendly and the environment was very communal. I had not seen something like that since college.

You’ve been learning mongo, angular, react, and ember since you graduated so you can “become a more desirable candidate.” How did WDI prepare you for this?

WDI helped prepare me by giving me a great beginning toolset to work with. It started with the learning of JavaScript and Ruby fundamentals. Also, our instructors were constantly challenging us to learn beyond what was being taught in the classroom by pointing us to valuable resources that we could draw from if we wanted to dive deeper in a particular subject.

Lastly, I cannot stress enough about how valuable it was to learn how to read documentation meant for developers and how to apply that knowledge in something you are building.

What does your dream job look like?

My dream job has me continually learning; hopefully some of this learning comes by way of an experienced developer who’s mentoring me. I would like to be a back end developer (this week….it’s always changing), but I feel that I need a bit more experience before I can focus on any particular area.

What are three things you want from the GA community right now?

1. The continuation of alumni events. It’s great that I learned from some great teachers and got to meet some wonderful classmates. More alumni events would give us graduates the opportunity (and excuse) to keep in touch and continue to collaborate.

2. Speaking of events, as someone new to the field, finding out about job opportunities can be a little overwhelming. Having events like the upcoming Start Up job fair at a familiar location (GA SF) is really helpful.

3. Outcomes has been really helpful. The fact that they continue to support us after graduation was one of the reasons why I chose GA. I need for that to continue.

Who is your favorite teacher and why?

That’s a tough question. Our WDI class had 3 instructors and 2 TA’s, all of whom had their own strengths. I choose to decline answering, because I don’t want to be cornered by one of my instructors in the SF GA hallways in the future about this question.

Learn More About Web Development at GA

Nelson Igunma helps to collect Alumni Success Stories from around the world and craft interviews for our blog.