Slav Kurilyak had a sharp entrepreneurial spirit, but wanted to learn to program, so he joined Lighthouse Labs in 2014. A current student, Slav tells us why he decided on Lighthouse Labs and his plans after graduation!
What were you up to before deciding to go to Lighthouse Labs?
After winning the 2013 Vancouver Startup Weekend, I decided to enter learn programming. At the time, I was working as a civil engineer and I realised that software is eating the world. Shortly after, I signed up for Lighthouse Labs, a private development bootcamp in Vancouver.
Did you apply to other bootcamps? Why did you ultimately decide on Lighthouse Labs?
After researching two development bootcamps in Vancouver, I attended local meet-ups and asked around for recommendations. I also visited each bootcamp and attended student presentations of final projects. In the end, I selected Lighthouse Labs for it’s diverse technical team, strong industry connections, and multiple recommendations.
Which instructors/mentors have been especially helpful to you? Did you feel like the teaching methods worked with your learning style?
With little coding experience prior to the bootcamp, I viewed each instructor, and teacher assistant as a mentor. If I had to select two -- Khurram Virani and Don Burks would be my favourite instructors. Khurram's approach of active engagement with the students and Don's approach of using witty comments during the lecture, allowed me to learn the course material at a deeper level of comprehension. Also Don's diverse technical expertise allowed me to explore other tools, libraries, and frameworks in addition to the required course material.
Can you talk about a time when you got stuck in the class and how you pushed through?
In the bootcamp, we were taught that we should never be stuck for more than 30 minutes, but in practise, this number was too high for me. Instead I created my own 15 minute rule. If I am unable to figure out the solution within 15 minutes, I ask either one of the instructors or one of the students.
Tell us about your final project as it currently stands - what technologies are you using, what does it do?
My final project is still to be determined. One idea I am brainstorming at the moment is defining a new communication protocol that gives control to the recipient and helps individuals gain control of their inbox.
What do you plan to do once you're graduated? Are you inclined more to be a developer or entrepreneur? Or both?
Upon graduation from Lighthouse Labs, I plan to work for a startup as a Junior Software Developer. In the future, I can see myself working as a full-stack developer once I gain confidence in my technical abilities.