4 min read
7/19/2022
Tuesday, July 19, 2022
Alumni Success Stories

Sabio Alumnus Dave's Success Story

From being an Intelligence Analyst in the US Army to becoming a Full-Stack Software Engineer

From being an Intelligence Analyst in the US Army to becoming a Full-Stack Software Engineer

Dave: Feels weird saying it's like, oh, yeah, I remember be just where y'all were at. I graduated on Friday. Okay. I've started in January, five months later, I've been hired as a full stack engineer.

I'm a veteran of the United States Army, enlisted as an intelligence analyst at a couple overseas stores, Korea, Afghanistan. But ultimately, I spent most of my time working at the National Security Agency headquarters at Fort Meade, the after the army, I worked for a few years as a government contractor in the same field. And it was a good career, but I was unhappy. And it was really difficult for me because having grown up relatively poor, it was really difficult to reconcile making good money and being unhappy with my work, you know, something like that never really computed. For me, ultimately, everything changed. When I've been taking night classes on my GI Bill, I took a class called Intro to algorithmic design, and I just completely fell head over heels for it. I couldn't believe that this was a viable career path. And I never been that passionate about anything academically or professional at all. And I knew just right then and there, that's what I want to do.

Q: What led you to Sabio Coding Bootcamp?

Dave: First step that I decided is I quit my job. And I dedicated all of my time to pursuing like a full time formal education and software development. But you've realized after you've been an adult working for some time, that a full time formal education doesn't really feel like a full time engagement. Even after like a full semester after that, like studying for that degree, I gained very little meaningful experience becoming a software developer, because in a formal education setting, there's a lot of fluff had to take some class called intro to technical writing that helped me absolutely no way at all. And so I decided that I really want to explore a boot camp option. Notice when I was going through my benefits with the VA that Sabio was on a very short list of boot camps that were already pre approved by vet tech, I went with it, I started in January, five months later, I've been hired as a full stack engineer.

Q: What Program did you take at Sabio?

Dave: The term boot camp, it really is a good word for it, because I wanted something that was going to be a full implementation of my time, and I wanted to really get the most out of it as I possibly could. So I signed up for the 17 week program. And that, for me, was a really positive experience getting to work in that more collaborative environment. I think that really did me a lot of favors as well.

Q: Did you know what you wanted to do in tech before going to Sabio?

Dave: Absolutely not a short answer. It's part of the reason why I really wanted to go into a full stack engineering bootcamp because I had no idea which part of app development that I would enjoy best. This is like you don't know what questions to ask now that I have like a decent understanding of programming principles, it's almost overwhelming the amount of possibilities that are out there. Like even just within web development, there isn't a sector in the entire market that doesn't need those skills.

Q: How did Sabio help with the job interview process?

Dave: You're going to be told everything about how to set up a good LinkedIn profile, as well as general advice for how to network and connect with people in the industry and LinkedIn. And I remember very distinctly, the literal first recruiter that I had talked to over LinkedIn as a software engineer is actually ultimately the one that got me the lead for the job that I accepted. Gregorio had given us all kind of a blanket advice, some canned language that we could offer them. And I think I had a phone call with him that day, the following day at a tech interview with the actual engineering team lead of the team I'm going to be working on and then the day after that, I was sitting in front of the vice president of the engineering department who thought he was interviewing me for a senior role. And then the following day, I got a call saying that I had been offered a job that even though they thought they were trying to get a more senior person, but I guess I did so well, in spite of that he like went back to the board said that they needed to like revamp their onboarding process to capitalize on people with less traditional education and experience backgrounds like me, and they created a role for me, it's still a lot to process. I never thought that I could be an example or model for anything. I was never like a very big social media guy. Basically, all I had to do was follow pretty much exactly the steps that had been laid forward by you by Liliana by Rob, like how to network over LinkedIn, it's really easy to make connections. The networking piece is really important. I definitely didn't think much of it before. I'm definitely a convert now.

Q: What job do you have now?

Dave: So the company that I accepted a position for is called Colo their main product is a cloud based payment processing API. And their products are using things like mobile banking, digital wallets, payroll software, and they're bringing me on as a junior full stack engineer for the position that I accepted. I was offered a base salary of $80,000 a year it's fully remote unlimited paid time off, they're giving me 6k of stock options like a $1,000 budget to set up a home In the office, it's a pretty good deal. But like some of the other jobs that I'm interviewing for advertised, and even like higher range, the bottom of it is like 105. And so I'm going to see that if I can get that offer, I'm going to try to see if I can get Colo to at least like meet them halfway. If not, match it entirely.

Q: What advice would you give to new Sabio students?

Dave: In addition to utilizing the queue early, and often just to really get comfortable talking about code, kind of in the same vein that help each other out. And not only does it feel good to do that, but it's another opportunity to talk about code. We talked about this concept and programming called the rubber ducky, were even talking to a literal inanimate object about code and sometimes allow you to work through a tough problem and being able to help somebody with an issue that they're having will not only help them, but it can help solidify your own understanding of something as well as well as how to talk about it and how to do it in English. Thank you so much. This has really been just such a humbling experience and I'm very grateful to you and to all of you. It's given all of you here. Y'all kept me motivated this whole time.

Ready to take action?
Take the first step!

Schedule your Info Session today. We can't wait to meet you!

Info Sessions are your chance to meet our instructors via Zoom and to get an overview of what Sabio and Alliant International University have to offer from our innovative program. It’s a warm environment where you can ask questions and get over any fears or hesitancy you may be experiencing.
*All times are PDT/PST