With a Political Science degree and a love for computers, Edgard Navarrete applied to Turing School in Colorado. We talk to Edgard about why he chose Turing, diversity in his cohort, and how he uses the Turing mentor network to get through tough challenges.
What were you doing before you started at Turing?
My dad owns a restaurant in Los Angeles so I was working with him on the weekends. I have a degree in Political Science form UCLA.
Did you have a technical background before you applied?
I really don't have a technical background but I have always loved computers. I had about a year of experience doing a lot of tutorials online like the Michael Hartl tutorial and stuff from teamtreehouse.com
Why did you choose Turing? Did you apply to any other bootcamps?
The length of the program did have a lot to do with it. I felt that to understand all the technologies associated with programming I would need at least six months. Something about learn how to code in two months doesn't seem right to me. I didn't apply to other programs, Turing has a flexible payment package if you get in so that was very helpful.
What was the application process like?
The process to get accepted is not the easiest but it isn't too tough. You make a video of yourself explaining why you want to learn programing. You do a logic test online and then you do a live logic test with an instructor.
What was your cohort like? Did you find diversity in age, race, gender etc? Did you feel like everyone was on the same level and able to learn together?
I was really happy with my classmates. There is a lot of diversity and many interesting backgrounds in class. People are so intelligent it's really cool. Most students are in the same level of understanding, practically beginners, there is always one of two students who are more advanced but they become a resource.
Who were your instructors? What was the teaching style like and how did it work with your learning style?
The instructors are great, they really know their stuff. I feel like the teaching style at Turing is constantly evolving at the end of the week there's a survey asking about what you liked and didn't like about the classes, if you articulate your point well enough you may see a change by the next week. Classes vary from code alongs, independent tutorials, group discussions, and partner pairing there's something for every style of learning.
Have you experienced burnout during your time at a bootcamp? How do you push through?
I haven't experienced burn out. The six month structure allows for intermission weeks between each module, so this allows you time to rest or to catch up with whatever topics you feel you may need work on.
Can you tell us about a time when you were challenged in the class? How did you succeed?
I wish I could tell you a secret technique to have an advantage, but really all you can do is work hard. When things get challenging I try everything that I can think of, and then reach out to other students or reach out to Turing's mentor network.
Tell us about a project you're proud of that you made during Turing.
I'm really proud of the project I'm working on right now with my classmates. The project is called Dinner Dash where we have to create a restaurant site from scratch, where users can select menu items, add them to their cart, and checkout. The site is built using ruby on rails.