My Lambda School Update

Hey! So, here’s my blog post on Lambda School, finally!

My first day of Lambda was April 22, so I’ve been there a total of 3 weeks. Initially, for the first couple of weeks, I started off in the Full Time program, however, during week 3 I decided to switch to Part Time. The only difference is that the Part Time program is in the evenings for 3 hours, 5 days a week whereas the Full Time program is 8 hours, 5 days a week (8am -5pm PST).

I decided to switch to Lambda’s Part Time program because it provides much more time to work on projects and truly feel like I’ve mastered what I’ve learned. I have more time to focus on small details like polishing my portfolio & GitHub account. To me, the small details matter in the long run especially if you are new to the field & just starting out. There’s no need to feel like you’re rushing through learning material just to get a grade and later scrummaging to go back & re-tweak old projects from days or weeks back. That’s pretty much how I felt in the Full Time program.

This is not to shed a bad light on the Full Time program – it just didn’t work for me, personally. Lambda School’s curriculum is amazing and in just 3 weeks I’ve learned a lot, which is why I want to take my time and really get the most out of it.

The Full Time program made me feel like I was just going through the motions to make sure I met a deadline. And after 8 hours, I didn’t have much mental energy left to feel like I wanted to reflect or do anything extra. I burnt out really fast.

Once a topic is complete, you are on to the next the very next day. And you certainly need to rest your brain in between that. However, the goal is not to rush through anything or try to cram a bunch of stuff into my brain in one day – the goal is mastery. It’s very possible to do it the fast way but it’s not the route I want to take on my journey.

It’s bigger than just completing assignments & meeting deadlines. This is also a life that I’m making for myself, so it goes beyond Lambda. To feel confident in what I’m working on & to be able to truly reflect on it, discuss it with others (via networking events, future employers, etc.) and write about it here.

It’s a long game. It’s building blocks.

It’s not just coding – it’s relationship building, it’s community.

Months down the line, I intend to have built some real mastery as a Full Stack developer, connected with some great people and contributed in whatever ways I can to the dev community, even if it’s just through writing about it.

Once you master the fundamentals then it’s much easier to expound on that knowledge. It can be easy to slip into a state of feeling overwhelmed in this field because it’s just SO MUCH to learn and so many different approaches to coding.

So, the past several days into the Part Time program, I’ve spent a tremendous amount of time going back through earlier topics & projects – tweaking and perfecting things – which I’ll talk about in another post. But I can confidently walk into the next topic feeling proud of my work & confident in it + drop it into my portfolio having polished it to the max and then share & discuss it with others. THAT FEELS GOOD!

I’m also a very organized person and I like order. I need to always be ready. Portfolio ready & brain ready. You never know who is watching your journey so it’s always in anyone’s best interest to be prepared for anything – that’s me.

Sure, Lambda School is 9 months (Full Time) / 18 months (Part Time) but the end of the program is not when you wait to do all this. I intend to be mastering topics, kicking butt, contributing and portfolio building all long. The length of the program doesn’t necessarily means employers (or anyone!) won’t be interested in you prior to that.

“Luck favors the prepared.”

Edna “E” Mode, The Incredibles 2

So, through all this, I have a new life motto:

The goal is not how fast I can go but rather how effective I can be.

It’s not about speed, it’s about quality. My speed will come with time – for now, I’m in learning mode. I want to be a great developer, so I’ve aligned by habits to become that.

So, this post was mainly just about my experience at Lambda so far and some people have been wanting to know what it’s been like for me there – so I hope this gives a little insight! 🙂 Of course, you can always tweet me for questions. I’ll follow up with more about what I’m working on and so on.

See you soon! 🙂

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