Couples that Code Together, Prosper Together
How Rob & Monica went to Sabio Coding Bootcamp and are now richer and happier than their wildest dreams.
Why separate work and play when you can combine them and build your dream life? At least that’s what Rob & Monica firmly believe today. Ask them two years ago and you would have gotten a different story. Rob (whose success story you can read here) was a former soldier with no direction in life until he found Sabio. In just a few months he took the bootcamp, landed an amazing remote job and now makes six-figures, ….but that’s only part of the story.
After some coaxing, Rob convinced his girlfriend and now ex-barista, Monica to take the Sabio plunge as well, and now she also now has an amazing remote six-figure job. Talk about luck! Just kidding, there was little luck involved, just a lot of hard work, love and a LOT of Sabio.
Check out some of our interview:
R: Monica was doing all the cooking and cleaning while I was in this intense bootcamp. She was basically doing everything around the house and supporting us financially. I kept telling her over and over that this was an amazing program and I was really liking it. There was this moment when we went to the park nearby, before I had even finished the program and I told her, “You really should go through it. Once I get a job, if you ever want to do this, I’ll support you like you supported me.” But she was just like “Nah, nah, no way, that’s like learning a foreign language.”
M: I actually have not completed my college education. I was just a junior in college when covid happened so I dropped out. I couldn’t do online learning, which is ironic.To get by I was working in a coffee shop in California where I was also doing human resources training, but that was also shut down with covid. So Rob and I ended up moving to Texas …where I started working at another coffee shop. I was getting so tired of waking up at 5AM and sending people off to their jobs while I’m on the other side of the counter dead tired. I was just tired every day. As things started really prospering for Rob I finally thought, “Okay, I’m gonna do it.” And I just did. I pulled the trigger, took out a couple of loans and yeah!
R: It totally took me by surprise actually. I honestly did not think that she wanted to do it.
S: Was there one instigating moment that made you decide to do it?
M: I think for me it was seeing all these doors in my current jobs closing in my face and I was really starting to just not like it anymore. I wasn’t having fun, and I was ready to do something more. When Rob got his job and I saw his success with it, I wanted that.
S: So what was your experience like while you were learning it while Rob was working?
M: I think I told this to Gregorio Rojas, (Sabio’s Co-Founder & CTO,) I cried almost every week, because I kept doubting that I could pull this off. I don’t know if it was actually hard, but I felt like I couldn’t do it. And Rob had already gone through it so when would try to help me but that mainly led to arguments, (laughs.)
R: I think I confused her more than I helped her.
M: It was weird having Rob try to help me and I would get upset and frustrated
R: Eventually we just had to make a rule to not talk about it. So, she would just talk about it with the instructors, (like you’re supposed to,) and go in the queue and we would just not talk about it. I’ve told this to Gregorio multiple times, but I am blown away by how easily they’re able to teach. Like, they have a program here that works. Going there, you physically do coding exercises instead of just sitting in a classroom and being spoon fed info. It’s challenging at first, but once you get it, there’s like this A-Ha moment and you are so thankful to have learned that way.
S: How has your life benefitted as a couple now that you have both gone through Sabio?
R: We don't think about money at all-
M: Which is nice.
R: We haven't bought a house yet but we want to and the houses that we're looking at, I mean i'm only speaking for myself but I could not imagine buying a house like that before Sabio.
S: What were your plans for the future before Sabio?
M: I was going to school for human resources, I thought that was going to be my path. I was sure I was going to do HR for this coffee shop I loved and maybe a different company. That’s honestly where I thought my life was going to lead.
R: For me, I’ll be honest that I don’t really think that far ahead. So, when I graduated from my MBA program, it was like, okay that’s done, then I jumped into this other thing, and then I jumped into getting a job, and then I’m trying to get into something else. I just really wasn’t thinking about the next thing. I used to not think very far down the road because if I did it would just give me tons of anxiety.
S: Monica, how long has it been since you graduated from Sabio and what has it been like since?
M: October 18th, 2021 was my last day. It’s been great. Just two weeks out and I got an official job offer. It’s so awesome. I know the first week I had applied for a really great job and the company ended up offering me a job in a completely different position because they liked me. I sat down with Gregorio and he’s like, “Don’t do that, you’ve only been out of the program a week. If this was 6-months down the road I’d tell you to do that. But don’t” And then, the next week I got offered a development position with the company I’m at now.
S: What would you say to other couples who might be considering doing something like this?
M: I wouldn't do it at the same time.
R: Yeah I wouldn't do it at the same time
M: You'd never eat.
R: Yeah, you would go broke. You'd be homeless, and then you wouldn't be able to do it. I mean, it's totally do-able. I think there has to be a lot of trust too. Because Monica had to cook and put food on the table. I had to trust that (Monica) would be able to do that and not quit your job, cause I know you wanted to.
M: I wanted to soooo bad. I'd get home from working, and I was full time, and I'd go to the grocery store, I'd cook. And honestly, I would recommend not doing Sabio at the same time. We had a really nice agreement, when I would go through the program, Rob would do the cooking and the grocery shopping, and he did. So it was really nice to have that support and other bonus, we're not having breakdowns at the same time.
R: I'd say just have a plan to support each other in that way. You forget when you code, that you gotta eat. You have to plan like okay, who's going to make dinner this time. It was like that, so I guess I would say just have a plan for those things. Kind of outline who is going to take care of what during that time, because it's only like 3 months long. I feel like it's not that long to have this crazy uncomfortable schedule because it was uncomfortable, especially when she would get up at 5AM and then I'd get up a few hours later to go through the program.
M: Yeah, I remember thinking, 'he's so freaking lucky.' I'd get home from work at 2 in the afternoon and he's still in his PJs on the computer.
S: Have you found that Sabio was supportive to you as a couple?
R: I love all the instructors at Sabio so much. They are very down to earth people and this program is amazing. I keep repeating that, but that's because I'm genuinely shocked that this even exists. Really, I am. They honestly just want you to succeed. I'm on the slack and I still go on there for the data and algorithms class. But also see that they work so hard to network and they work so hard to get all these different avenues for jobs for their alumni, these different pipelines. It’s nuts. And they really don't have to do that. Because what they offer is they teach you how to code, and that's why the biggest value point. Usually with other coding bootcamps like these, the community, networking, that’s all an afterthought. Also at those other programs, no one really ever teaches you how to network. When you go to college, you kind of have a community and that's one of the benefits of college. But if you don't go to college, you don't really have a community unless you go out and find one and join one. There's a ton of them out there, but you have to find them and some of them aren't that great. And I get it, people are busy, but there's something about the Sabio cohort model that, you're like, Oh! I remember when I went through my cohort, you know? I'm cohort blah blah blah, here’s some advice, or here’s a job tip. There's something to that.
S: Monica, did you find Rob helpful at all when you were looking for jobs since he had gone through the experience already?
M: Yes and no.
M: Okay, I did find him helpful. He gave me a lot of advice, but I can be pretty stubborn and I don't want advice, I want to figure it out for myself. So I remember telling him, I'm going to be on an interview and if you can hear me, I don’t need you to tell me what I said wrong or what I should have said. But, he was really helpful because one of the big things that he told me was, shotgun your resume. Do what Sabio tells you and send it out to everyone. And he kind of gave me the inside scoop of the questions that interviewers were going to ask and how Sabio really does prepare you. I didn't feel surprised by anything and also I sent out so many resumes. Over 500, I think he helped in preparing me, because I was listening to the Sabio instruction videos like, "Oh, Rob already told me this."
R: What's funny is, I didn't tell her anything, that Sabio doesn't tell you. It's literally everything that Sabio told me.
S: And Monica, can you tell me a little bit more about your position now?
M: Yeah, so I actually got hired on as a junior developer and I’m in the middle of my 4th week. So right now I’m still learning and getting used to my surroundings. It's all remote, but I’m still getting used to the code and they are bringing everything in house from outside, so it's been a big transition period. But, it's been really cool because there is a lot of opportunity to learn and to really get your hands in the code because the company is smaller.
S: And what's the name of your company?
M: IT's through MCM staffing, it's very complicated. It's like the umbrella company, but a company called Robal.
S: Is there anything you guys want to add?
M: I'm really happy I went through the program. I didn't understand Rob at first when he would talk about, "It's the community. They're so great, blah blah blah." And I'm like, okay, whatever. And then going through it, you see it. You see like, the people from other cohorts reaching out to help other people in doing mock interviews and there's a commoradry there. I'm really happy that I went through it. Plus, I've met some really great friends from my cohort and we all keep in touch still.
R: Just do it.
Interview by Sassy Mohen
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