Alumni Panel | Onsite vs. Remote Programs: Hearing Two Different Perspectives

We sat down with Codesmith alums, Annette Lin (Software Engineer, Backend @ IBM), Duane McFarlane (Frontend Engineer @ dv01), and Katrina Henderson (Software Engineer @ Def Method) to discuss their experiences in the Software Engineering Immersive, both in-person and online. The panelists dive into what life was like while in the program and how Codesmith helped them build their new careers.

This video is a recording of a live event. To follow along live and participate in any upcoming workshops and events, RSVP at

0:00 – Intro
1:13 – Panelist Introductions
4:27 – What were some of the benefits of taking the program in the setting that you did it in?
8:05 – Taking your program into account, how did the daily schedule fit into your life and the responsibilities you had outside of Codesmith?
12:40 – What was your time outside of the program like? How did you utilize that downtime? Do you feel taking the program remotely vs in-person affects how you utilized those hours?
18:06 – What was your experience like meeting with your cohort and alumni while you were in the program? How did you build friendships and relationships with your cohort mates in the setting that you were in?
24:07 – How did the program help you prepare for the specific position you are in now?
30:52 – Did the program you took affect whether you were looking for a remote or in-person role?
37:00 – Audience Q&A

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[Music] Thank you Hello everybody Um maybe you've seen me at a JavaScript The hard parts for something like that Or on YouTube but my name is Kyle Combs I am the senior software engineer here At code Smith I've been with code Smith Since January of 2019 so coming up on Four years now I was a lead instructor In the New York on-site program and I Was also a lead instructor in the New York program when we went remote and Then it was the lead instructor for the Uh the central remote program as well so I've worked in kind of programs on-site And remote Just like a lot of these uh panelists That we have tonight we've got a couple Of panelists that did the program uh in Person uh back before the pandemic and One panelist this evening that uh did The program remote uh now that we have Two options we we want to kind of like Get Down to the to the nitty-gritty About what's what's great and what's uh Good about each of those kind of Programs so uh before we kick off I Would love to uh you know have the the The panelists introduce themselves as Well Um I think we'll just try and go in like A general order starting from intros all The way through we'll we'll start with

Annette and then Katrina and then Dwayne Um as we go through all of the different Questions tonight Um so Annette would you like to just Introduce yourself tell us like who you Are where you are maybe uh when you did The program and um what what you've been Doing since then Sure hey everyone Um I'm Annette I did the on-site program 2019 so it's been a couple of years now Um I am now at IBM as a back-end Engineer I've been there for a couple of Years Um working on a lot of internal apps and Doing a lot of essentially profile Building for 500 employees that's kind Of what our Squad handles Right on welcome we're happy to have you Annette uh Katrina how about you Hello Um I am Katrina and I uh went to code Smith almost almost exactly a year ago So coming up on my one year anniversary Um I did the Los Angeles remote program And and right now I am employed I've Been employed for about two months at a Consulting company called deaf method And currently I'm actually working in Ruby and learning some new stuff so That's pretty fun got assigned to a Project using a language that I had been Tinkering with so it's fun I'm enjoying Doing something a little bit different

That's awesome we're happy to have you As well Katrina uh Dwayne over to you Man hi um I'm Dwayne um I went to code Smith in July 2019. uh I'm on my second Job since Goldsmith uh working primarily On the front end uh react front end but I've been lately I've been doing a lot Of backing stuff as well it's a load Back end Um my company is a db01 this is a it's a Fintech company based based in New York City Um but it's pretty remote Um yeah doing doing some cool stuff uh Uh you know we have a serverless back End so we're using Um uh gcp as our cloud provider and uh Yeah I'm learning a whole lot and it's Been I've been there for about a year Now Awesome well welcome as well welcome to To all of our panelists well let's uh Let's jump into I have some questions That I that I want to kind of ask and Kind of go through uh with with all the Panelists and then Um if you have a question think of that Question we are going to save some time For uh for y'all to ask some questions As well as we get towards uh the end so Um if you have one don't worry we'll get To you uh shortly uh and then we'll ask For those questions and you can just pop Up your hand and we'll we'll go around

Uh at that way Um but to get it kicked off I I know That uh none of you when you came to the Program really had an option whether you Did it in person or remote it was kind Of one or the other at that point but I Would love to know like what do you Think were some of the benefits of of Doing the program in the setting that That you did it uh in so and that will We'll start off with you Yeah for me I mean obviously I didn't um Have the option of doing it remote but I Feel like that worked out for me just Because I knew going in the community Was going to be a huge part of it for me So doing a lot of the workshops before I Even applied to code Smith kind of Figuring out what the general Vibe of The program was like really convinced me To what go for it and I'll say Personally my learning style is I also Need people to like push my ass to Actually learn it versus being a lot More Um self-motivating so that was also a Factor in terms of like okay now I have A lot more try to actually get it done Um but again there's always cons and Pros to to both Awesome Katrina how about you Seeing as I went attended the LA Residency Um gotta say really enjoyed not having

To go there I really enjoyed not having To deal with LA traffic I'm sure New York is the same or Worse Um so that was one of the perks for me I Feel like that allowed me to get a Little more sleep and not have to drive Which is taking my stress level like Dramatically down Um but I do think that there my cousin Actually attended the Los Angeles Um in-person immersive and we kind of Were able to compare and contrast our Experiences I think that like Annette Said you get a lot more Um Hands-On Community when you do attend The in-person program however Um to to the credit of the code Smith Team here in La I felt like it really Did an awesome job of establishing and Like continuing to you know engender This really supportive engaged Community We were obligated to play fun games with Each other like once a week or whatever And it did it was great it honest and I Feel like I came out of it with friends Um despite never having met any of them At the start and even only having seen Some of them a few times we still keep In touch Um so I think that the quality of the Classes was really good and you know There's the challenge of being in your House and having to like pay attention In your house when you have literally

All the things you want to do right There but for me personally it worked Out Yeah awesome right on how about you Dwayne uh yeah um again I uh I attended The in-person Um A cohort and Uh similar to a net um I needed the Be the in-person community type of vibe Um just uh because I I needed that push Um I definitely when when someone is Staying late like when you see someone Staying late it's like okay you never Let me uh put in the extra hours and you Know because it's so tempting to you Know I'm gonna you know call it a day But then when you see your friends and Your peers grinding grinding grinding it Just inspires you to grind some more and Uh you know it definitely I I'm being I'm sure I'm sure I'm sure the remote uh Um um of course has it's it's benefits Because I love working remote But for me personally I needed to be in Person Nice right on well Taking the you know which which program You kind of did into account Um how did the daily schedule fit into Your to your life and responsibilities That you had you know outside of the Program as well and did you have any Downtime during the day if so like how

Did taking the program in person versus Remotely kind of like affect What you did with that downtime or kind Of like these different kinds of aspects Annette you want to kick us off I think for for me it definitely became Just pretty much a center of what I was Doing for the next three months because Uh being on site you Literally are there up to like 12 13 Hours a day and even when you have a Little bit down time during the program It's like you're still very much Immersed in that environment whether It's you know through Doing team lunches uh dinners uh so 24 7 You're basically around the same people So you don't really get a break in terms Of like mentally detaching yourself from Code Smith but that's also kind of the Point where they want you to get the Most out of that the program But I will say there is not as much Flexibility maybe in comparison to doing A remote program where you know I could Probably duck out for a little bit of Time just to you know return whatever Like I don't have the option when I was Doing that in person Um so more stringent in terms of okay I Have to commit myself to uh to the Program but the benefit of that is again You're with so many of the same people And that kind of ads to the general you

Know advantage of being there Nice right on how about you Katrina Foreign Like look up my schedule because I just Don't remember precisely but I believe We had I know on Mondays we had family Dinners so You don't get that dinner hour to Yourself you have family dinner and it Was not like it was mandatory as in like You'd have to excuse yourself if you Weren't going to be present Um and so there were pot an hour Possibly for lunch and an hour pause I Believe for dinner if I remember Correctly Um which I guess the perk of that is That Um you're already at your house so like I would take my hour and I'd like go Breathe like air like outside air like Maybe like wash walk my dog like do an Activity or something you know kind of Break from it though I will say Uh like the out the days the the hours Per day that you spend working on code Is going to be about the same as Um in person if the difference will Probably be like getting there and Getting back I did end up usually it was Like 8 A.M to like eight nine ten PM Days Um so it can get pretty long but yeah I Think having those hours breaking it up

Is nice and there is like a little bit Definitely more flexibility since you're Already Um at at your house but I kind of like Fell into a little rhythm where I'd like Sit down five minutes early and do my Word all and then you know and then get Through my day Um but yeah Awesome right on Dwayne over to you uh Yeah if I remember correctly I I think Tuesdays and Thursdays um the lunch was Two hours long or I think I think so but Yeah Um you know the flexibility I was coming From uh Queens so I really couldn't just Like uh you know go home for lunch or Come back I was once you know you know Once I was there I was there the entire Day uh you know eight nine ten eleven Twelve hours Um but it was Um I found that We my coordinates you know your group Project mates Um we did find the balance of like Breaking up the day so you don't get Burned out I mean there was ping pong There was I mean you're in the city so We go for a walk or You know Um go get lunch together or just do or Just or just or Just Do Your Own Thing So while you're in there in that space

Um for so long We did a good job of like always Maintaining that balance and like you Know recharging And um You know just you know just you know Making sure that mentally you're okay Nice right on well that Russian I guess kind of like follows up On that on the last question and uh you Know more kind of like When you did get those that that little Bit of time outside of the program Whether it was like once you left code Smith to head home for the night or if You were at home like once you finally Just like okay I'm closing the computer That's it Um what what was kind of your your time Outside of the program like um you know What how did you kind of like utilize That time and do you think taking the Program in person or remotely kind of Influenced your life Outside of that And for me I feel like I had to be a Little bit more Um Precise with how I spent like my Personal time outside of the program uh So making sure that if I wanted to go to The gym I really have to be like you Know super disciplined and either wake Up early go or then you know if I don't

Feel like it's too late I'll go after After Um the day is done but with like Spending time with friends too that's Also a little bit more Um not tough but you definitely have to Kind of you know pick and choose where You want to go depending on like what Your friends want to do because you Don't necessarily have the same Flexibility like oh you you can just you Know hang out somebody's house at like 6 PM but It wasn't as I thought I initially would be so There's still a lot of you know good Downtime that you get to have you know After you're done with your day you can Still relax and your weekends are still Um that's pretty as as possible so you Definitely start the choice to kind of Maintain a good balance between like Doing the program and also just enjoying You know your own personal time for sure Right on Katrina Yeah I I pretty much agree with Annette I think Um having to be a little more structured With your free time and then figuring Out what your priorities are like There's some things you just have to do Like you have to eat the dog has to go Out like you have to find time to take Care of yourself and take care of you

Know any any other because some people Have like whole other people that they Have to take care of too while going Through code Smith and it's a it is Pretty demanding I personally well I had Just moved to LA when I came out here so I was like no friends no problem I'll Just like not talk to anyone and it Won't be an issue Um but I did like there are some like Codes with meetups and I did like force You know breathe outside air like I Mentioned to try and just like keep that Mental health okay But I did I do think that I personally Am someone who struggles to change Activities I'm really good once I'm like In the zone of an activity I don't want To break it and then get in the zone of Another because like I have like a Transition time or whatever so I feel Like once I was like all right the day Is done then I was able to like have More structured activities and like do Like completely disconnect but I think During my pauses during the day I wasn't Really able to Um so just kind of made me see what my Priorities were I suppose but I'm Fortunate that like I moved here to be Close to my mom so I didn't starve like There were all kinds of all kinds of Good things um but there's definitely Ways it takes up a lot of time and it's

Very very demanding but there's also Time that you just have to there's time For yourself but you have to use it Wisely I guess yeah nice right on yeah I Gotta love having somebody to uh to cook Your meals while you're going to code Smith that's a that's a clutch move Right there ah Dwayne how about you man Yeah uh it was Actually the first half was easier Because I have a daughter and she was Nine at the time So but I was but it was summer it was Summer for her so it was since summer Vacation So I think on the first six weeks of the Summer but then when school started for Her that kind of got a little Trickier trying to you know help with Homework for her you know help study Hard trying to juggle parental duties Like School principal duties and Code Smith so That really like because I I remember we Had classes on Saturdays up until five Or four So then you know after you know I would Go home and help her with her you know School projects or book reports or Whatever have you and Sundays definitely All day So that was The last Four or five weeks especially with the

Production project and then my daughter In school It was a little bit a little bit dicey But yeah definitely Um you do have time to like you know Saturdays you could be like um Decompress And typically the class on Saturdays It's not I don't believe there's a Lecture I think it was just Uh I I can't remember what it was but it Was a little bit more relaxed and um and Sundays yeah your Sundays you take it That uh that time to sleep or recharge Or whatever have you That that one day a week that you sleep Right [Music] Nice all right so Um Katrina kind of already touched on This uh question a little bit in her in Her intro but I'm curious like what your Experience was kind of like meeting both With your cohort or maybe other alumni While you were uh while you're in the Program whether it was remote or kind of In person like for example I some some Folks mentioned team dinners or lunches Together and whatnot like how did you Collaborate and kind of build those Those friendships and relationships with The folks that you were in the cohort With

Um in in the setting that you were in Um we because we essentially had two Cohorts in the same space so that was Really really helpful with Um if we were stuck on a problem Whatever you wanted somebody to bounce Ideas off of like there were so many People I could go to just to like get Advice kind of debug things together we Needed to and Um those seniors already have a really Good grasp like what we would expect Going down at the program so they would Be essentially kind of additional Mentor Figures for us Um and that was really great for just Learning a lot quicker and also just Getting good exposure to like okay how Do we handle projects managing them on The social aspect it was great to meet So many people from different Backgrounds and beyond that like every Thursday night we had those like Workshops where people would just hang On afterwards so that was another chance For us to like decompress but also get Involved with Um helping around the community and also Just meeting people that are interested In Carl Smith or Um we're looking to to either apply to The program so that was great we had a Lot of chance to just like meet real Really interesting people

Nice right on Katrina So I do think that one of probably the Downsides of being remote is that you Don't get a lot of like As I think in person you just can't You're not going to make us have the Same connections that you'll have with People like when you're talking on Zoom However that said I do think that if You're talking on Zoom 40 hours a week With people you do kind of get to know Them and we had like talent shows and And like you know or just like Hangouts After after hours where people would Attend and you'd get to kind of be a Little bit more candid and actually get To know people Um which did eventually evolve into you Know having a cohort meet up where we'd Pick a bar and like try and like Find a spot that's somewhere between Everyone because I guess that's another Thing with a remote program which I Don't know to what degree like the Venn Diagram crosses between remote and in Person but we're very very scattered There are even people in Seattle taking The LA remote program or on the East Coast taking the LA remote program Because that worked better with their Schedules or what have you Um and so it when we did meet up there's Always like that okay how are we going To organize this on a certain degree of

Organization that was a little bit more Demanding but yeah I did you know still Had the opportunity to meet some really Lovely people and it's kind of fun to Guess how tall people are via video and I nailed it a couple times like and then Decided to stop there because when you Get three right in a row you're gonna Stop but there's there's you know fun Little things like that I guess that are Kind of quirky and enjoyable Um but I still probably would have Enjoyed the the really amazing community That I got to be a part of in my cohort Even more had we more occasions to Actually spend time in this breathing The same air I'm just gonna talk about Breathing air this entire time Apparently but okay I'm good I think I Think I I'll try I mean I think that has Two of the things you said I think a it One of the things that surprised me most When we went remote is how these kind of Bonds would still just continue to to Thrive in like such a remote setting and Then many of the cohorts would organize Trips to either LA or New York or Something like that at the end so they Could all meet in person and I've had The opportunity to go to quite a few of Those and it is always amazing how Different everyone looks when you see Them in person it's just like some People are like six foot eight and you

Thought they were like five ten or or They're five foot tall and you thought They were like six foot it's a the Height thing is a very interesting thing Um Dwayne Yeah uh I would say you know even after Cosmith we have a we we still use that Slack channel the uh Goldsmith uh NYC 13. and then my production project meets We have our own slack Channel And frankly I work with one of my peop One of my uh teammates from the Production project today so we still Keep in touch obviously But yeah I mean I was just I was just do I was just I was just doing uh I was Just doing some lead code with one of my Coordinates like a couple weeks ago so Um you know we definitely keep in touch Um definitely it was I think our core Word I think we were yeah we there was a lot Uh lots of you know different Backgrounds and different personalities But like we were all cool there was no No drama Um no issues everyone's friendly Um I have almost all their phone numbers We still keep in contact Uh you know you're organized you know Some meetups you know a couple drinks Whatever have you can say yeah it was uh Definitely a um Definitely

Lifelong friendships I love hearing that I love hearing that Who are you working with now I'm working with Michelle Michelle Herrera nice oh tell her I said hello Please I will I really Um she's a rock star man she's killing It yeah awesome awesome well okay so Let's let's talk about kind of like After the program no right you've all Moved on you're you're working some for Years some for months but with what You're doing now how did the program uh Kind of like help you prepare for the Specific position that you're that You're doing now And not so much in terms of uh because I Got really into doing back and work Pretty pretty quickly Um and the majority of at least my time At code Smith was working on a lot of Like UI work and front end uh tests so The one thing that beyond having the Flexibility to do like full stack stuff When needed Um what it really prepared me for was Kind of learning how to just kind of Figure it out along the way whether by Through looking at documentation and Just breaking things like as you work on It Um and kind of Just following the cultural model of Like okay take your time you know go

Step by step and you're gonna get Frustrated along the way definitely but Sooner or later you kind of figure your Way into okay how do I approach this Problem and what's the best way to to Tackle it and I feel like that goes a Long way especially when you first start Because it's super easy still to feel Like you don't really know anything and To be fair like I feel like all of us Feel that way a lot of times Um but kind of taking a step back and Realizing that okay let's just you know Take a breath and you know do the best That that we can and I feel like Hudson Really prepares me for that in terms of Being a lot more independent in trying To to kind of think like a much more Like seasoned engineer on the team Nice I like that uh Katrina So I've only been like I said I've been In my current position for about two Months here Um and I would I will say that I think Technical communication during the Interview was something that I worked Was it was one of the they actually gave Me like what you did well in the Interview and what you could improve on And that was one of the things that was Very positive that I got back and I Think that's something where you're Pairing with people you're constantly Technically communicating you're getting

Um called out in a very nice way to kind Of make sure that you have this really Precise accurate technical communication And I think for interviews that's really Helpful Um and so far in my job I do think I Mean I've actually been mostly pairing I Initially because I work at a it's a con It's a Consulting agency so there's a Set like you'll get set on a project for X amount of time and then you'll move on To something else that may or may not be Using the same Tech stack which is look At me working in Ruby And I was JavaScript typescript react And now I'm like all right let's go work Ruby view let's see what happens but the Way I got assigned to the project was While you're sitting on the bench Waiting to be assigned to a project There was another colleague who's like Do you want a pair on this personal Project it's in Ruby I'm like oh I'm Learning that and I ended up blah blah Getting work getting set on this project And I think having that Curiosity and Then also like autonomy I feel like um Code Smith was really good at teaching You how to learn teaching how how to Find the right places to look for Information how to Google your error Codes properly how to get what you're Looking for and kind of work to a Solution I feel like that has been

Really beneficial especially like you Know being on a project where I have to Learn all this new new material new Syntax all that different structures I Feel like I'm like okay I've done this Before like I can do this again and I'm Really enjoying it so I feel like code Smith really prepared me for working on A team especially in pairing Um like a pairing Paradigm I guess and Then also just having having the tool Set to figure out Solutions different Problems Um or figure out what you need to learn In order to be have the capacity to Solve a problem or to create whatever Feature or what have you Nice right on Dwayne Definitely uh technical communication For sure helped help the great Interviews Um also It There was one um Just like not being afraid to do things That you've never done because when I Got to this world Uh yeah I've you know I've done react I've done node but you know we're using All types of tech I mean one one Repository one repository Is in scholar I've never touched Scala Before Um we're using

[Music] Um Uh you know we're using um gcp I've Never used gcp before of using terraform Never used that before but that that Um Being able to like Break it down to the smallest possible Problem first and then you know just Solve that problem and so so and solve These small problems And then you know or like even or like Even the way that we um used to uh ask Questions in slack at cosmith there was A specific way that we had to ask where We had to I think it was Well what the problem is what you expect To happen what you tried and what you Think the issue might be and and I've Used that same and that and I've used That same concept today even even these Days and Oftentimes I find the answer before I Even have to ask for help so Um Yeah I mean just You know just being having confidence And again you know the Imposter syndrome Is going to always whatever but like Um Not being afraid to like do something For the first time I think that's Definitely what that's definitely what Um

That's definitely what I learned from Nicole Smith for sure Nice I like that I like that and it's Cool to see that you know a lot of you Are working in things that you didn't Even learn at code Smith but you kind of Like it sounds like you you use that That kind of experience of like well I Learned all that stuff in short amount Of time I guess I can learn these other Things I like that Um so maybe you had a choice in this Maybe maybe you didn't uh when you were Looking for jobs but when you went out Looking for jobs did that did the Program that you take kind of like Affect whether you were looking for an In-person role or whether you looked for A remote role Um I When I first started job searching I Wanted something in person Um but I was also open to the idea of Doing uh maybe not fully in person all The time like couple of days in the Office and then I can work from home Like that would be great too because I Feel like I wanted to be an environment Where Um you had the option to also kind of Work together in person whether it's Through pairing or you had just like Your team available to you if you wanted To like you know storm on something test

Something out really quickly so I wanted To to do that especially as like just Starting out then I feel like that's Very important to kind of your uh your Growth Um because there are certain things that Um you just can't learn doing it by Yourself versus just having a team along With you and I wanted that as an Experience as starting out so I feel Like that really influencing which roles That I was willing to go for and which Companies that I wanted to interview With Nice right on Katrina what about you I was willing to consider hybridicals I Mostly wanted to work from home that was Kind of one of my big Um objectives actually though I did like The idea of like having the option of Going into work a couple days a week or Being you know that would have been fine With me but ultimately That didn't happen and I think that Again where I live I don't I would have To drive like 30 40 minutes to get Anywhere I just don't want to do that Um so like that's I don't like driving It it's a theme in my life Um I don't mind it I just don't like Having to but in any case that it really Did influence my my Um Job search in the sense that I if it was

An impr there was like one interview Where they're like yeah you just have to Drive here it's like an hour away like Three times a week and I was like ah Yeah This is my only awesome I didn't say That to them but it was uh it was Definitely something that I I considered Heavily also because I might move and so I really wanted Um To have the option of like having that Flexibility Um of being able to you know go Somewhere else like I can go visit some Family and work during the week and hang Out with them on weekends if I want to Or things like that so I did definitely Look for remote first roles Um and that's what I got which works out For me All right awesome Dwayne Uh well when I was interviewing So I graduated program in October 2019. That was I I had a couple of interviews Before the pandemic which I was Perfectly fine working in person I mean You know this is right before the Pandemic but then after Um it was like working in person with an Option at that point it was all remote And If I had a choice I guess I would have Wanted my first job to be in person

Because just to have someone that you Could physically one bounce ideas off of You know Um pairing like in person as opposed to Like on a zoom call or whatever have you Um I just felt that that would have been Easier but I do think that You know there was benefits having my First job remote Because I was kind of forced to like Uh it was like a trial by fire type of Thing it was like I had to figure things Out quickly not on my own but kind of on My own Um so You know pros and cons Um but now yes now I don't ever want to Go to office I I I I have been I haven't Been into office since March 2020 and I Don't anticipate ever Being at a job that I have to go in if It's optional yeah sure I've made once In a while but I fully embrace the Remote culture But I will add on to doin's point that Like uh with being remote because we're We're remote right now too that if you Were to kind of set up a meeting with Somebody like you really had to be Cognizant of like what you're spending That time on so making sure that you ask The right questions and making sure that You don't kind of delay the meeting Um if it's like not needed versus if

You're in person and it's like oh he can Continue chatting for like however long Right so you're a little more like Um As a little bit more Carefree with how You spend your time versus remote you Have to be like okay I want to be Respectful of this person's time too Awesome yeah I like that and Katrina I Lived in uh I lived in Los Angeles for a Couple of years and I used to always say To my partner I was like how do people That have to commute live in this city Because I just will never I will never Ever understand Um well I I want to make sure that we Have some time to uh to take some Questions from the audience so why don't We go ahead now and kind of like open up The floor to uh to anybody that might Want to ask a question to uh you know if You have a question for a specific Panelist you could ask a specific Panelists if you want to ask the Question to uh to the group we can do That as well and uh and we'll just go Through these and and see where we get To uh Felipe you want to kick us off Sure so thank you so much Annette Katrina and Dwayne that was fantastic to Get you invite so my name is Felipe Um and I'm from the Seattle area what's Up Um and I I have two questions here but

Maybe we can start off with the first One so like if you guys could do it over Again Um how would you prepare for your Immersive program Um Anna do you want to go first or or you Want me to no go ahead Um I would I would definitely Um do all of CSX but also Um build more things I would I would Build Uh Um projects build quad apps build uh you Know it's it's one thing it's one thing Doing like CSX so I was one thing doing A tutorial but You're gonna have to build things anyway Accord Smith without much guidance so Yeah just build stuff get frustrated get Lost and But yeah that's that is the really the Only way to like really get prepared I like it build stuff get frustrated get Lost that sounds that sounds like every Day of my life as a software engineer Um Annette do you want to turn it yeah Uh definitely agree with that and I feel Like personally for me I would have Been much more of a hard ass on my own Like diamond communication skills before I started interviewing Um because even though I knew that

Closer was super super Um particular and really place an Importance on that Um I don't think people realize just how Much of it is actually like utilized Once you're actually in the program so Kind of getting myself mentally ready to Like deal with that and kind of making Sure that every time I speak it's with The same right like specificity and then Communicate what I need to communicate In that like short amount of time Um I would have definitely practiced That a lot more before I did the program For this Katrina anything on your side I feel like technical communication and Building Things are two of the best Things that you really can work on Before getting into code Smith because a Lot of code Smith projects are kind of Like if you watch like the Great British Baking show it's like the technical Challenge where you have like a really Really like limited recipe and it's like Well make this fancy fancy thing and You're like okay looks like I have to Figure a lot of this out on my own which Is the point like it which is a great Way to learn Um but having experience building things And hitting those roadblocks and Figuring out where to work around them

And also kind of I would say building up I mean I have I'm like what do you call It I'm a resource Queen so I have all my Resources I've got a resource for Everything if you need a link I have a Link and I think had I kind of spent Time organizing and building out my Resources going into the program I would Have Um maybe Had a little bit of an easier time but I Think just mentally preparing yourself Um to to kind of to to be challenged Honestly yeah if I've had one thing it's Like prepare yourself to not know what's Going on the the the reigning metaphor Is drinking from the fire hose and That's that's it like that's that's the Way it's going to be you're not going to Get everything so don't come in being Super super hard on yourself expecting To be like okay I'm gonna understand Every word that comes out of this Person's mouth and by the end of this Lesson I'm going to know exactly what I Did like it's repetition over time that Really like builds these ideas like Eventually you get the Baseline and then You can build things on top of them but If you come into the program thinking That you're just go every day you're Gonna like be like yeah Check that off it's not gonna happen Like that I mean for some people maybe

But not for me but But also I love Seattle that's great That's all I lived there it was great Awesome and I know you said you have two Questions but I want to make sure we get We spread the love a little bit so I Promise I'll come back for your second Question uh after we get through the Other folks that have their hand up Sound good Felipe Um Henry how about you Hi I'm Henry Patterson and I'm from the New York area And I would say my question is like Like well I took another like code Immersive coding boot camp but that was With another Uh Place uh and that was and that was Online but Um I would and you know since then it's Just been you know tricky you know Finding a position after that But so I would say and you probably said This earlier so if I So if I ask again I'm sorry but uh I would say like would you say it was Probably I mean I'm sure it doesn't Really matter that much but would you Say it pro it was maybe easier like Finding a job or Like compared to the you know on-site Versus remote like finding a position Afterwards to or I get or does it not Really matter

Um I think I think I think what the biggest factor Of finding a job is how much effort you Put in Resumes I think a lot of people and I Always go through this myself but I felt Like I wasn't ready so I didn't Really go super intense with the job Search but I think I I know people who found jobs two Months after and I know people who took Longer than that you know Um Now with me you know I was I I went like The holidays of holidays season of 2019 And then the pandemic that kind of Impacted a little bit but yeah I think The number the number one factor is Apply uh send the resumes to jobs that You feel like you're not even qualified For still send it Um let them tell you that you're not Qualified don't try to like disqualify Yourself Yeah definitely and I feel like now is Probably a very interesting time too Especially with the tech industry right Now so it's going to be I personally Curious to see how things are the rest Of the year going into like q1 Q2 Um but I mean Dwayne is also right that You just have to you know be be Obviously be very uh kind of strategic In terms of how you apply so making sure

That even if the interview doesn't go Well you can you learn from it right so Don't feel like just because it was About interview and you kind of tripped Up on a couple of questions that it was You know not worth the time or waste of Your energy like no right you'll you'll Learn through that to kind of narrow Down worrying to focus on and the next Time you do get asked someone a question You'll be like okay I'm prepared and the More you do it the more comfortable you Are with kind of honing in on what you Want to share with the employer and also Learn to speak a little bit more Um more concretely and what you can Offer to the team and also the products That you build because like the Production product is going to be a huge Selling point for that and that's kind Of what you want to sell as you're going Through that interview process Right on Katrina any thoughts I think that one of the things that code Smith really excels in is preparing you To enter the and to enter the job market Once you finish the program there is Some a lot of focus on making sure that Your resume is ready and you know how to Talk about your resume you know how to Talk about your projects and you kind of You know so that's one half of it and The other half is just like going into Interviews the only way to get better at

Interviewing is to have a lot of fun a Lot of them basically um and so I think That's having that expectation of going Into the job market and being like okay It's my first interview it's going to be Rough but then it's going to get easier From here Um I don't know I can't really speak to The in-person versus remote Um like stats for like hiring like what Percentage of you know residents find a Job within 180 days of completing the Program or whatever the statistic is Um but I will say that uh pretty much Everyone pending some like special cases Has not a job for my cohort Um and I will say a lot of people it Probably took a couple months I ended up Doing The fellowship so I think that for me Personally having the opportunity Fellowship really helped me feel more Confident going into my interviewing Um stage of my life I guess which was Which was like pivotal because I That's just you know some people are Have more confidence going in no matter What and some people don't and I am the Latter uh so I think that you know just Preparing yourself but I do think that Uh I don't I would be surprised to find That the in-person program had a Significant like a statistically Significant difference in the like

Percentage of people finding a job after X amount of time Um because they do prepare you so well And a lot of the interviews are going to Be A lot of the interviews I did at least Were not in person until you get to like One of the later stages in the interview Process Um or not at all ever so I don't know How much that would necessarily make a Difference but you know it depends on How you learn I guess Yeah yes right on uh great thank you Hi hello from Darwin Australia Um so I'm uh really enjoying this and Getting a lot out of it thank you to Everyone Um I'm trying to decide between in Person Um remote but also the part-time program Which I know we're not covering today Um I'm a really uh extremely introverted Person Um and I Um I'm kind of terrified of 12 or 13 Hours of interacting with people A day and I just wonder Um is that something that any of you Faced uh could you take us through a Typical day so you know is it 12 hours Of paired Discussion or like what's sort of the Tempo of the day and

Um you know as a normal person's stamina Can can you deal with this level of um Work as well as interaction Um Well yeah I'm not the most social person Myself but I found it to be a very uh Comfortable environment Um Uh I think you know the first hour You're doing like an algorithm by Yourself like hack our and then the Lectures and then you go off to Paris so You're not a paranormal for 12 hours a Day Um But Yeah there's definitely especially I Mean obviously in person definitely a Social because I think that's the uh one Of the things that Drew me to Coast myth Was the community aspect so Um But I found that the people were the the People there were Both my court mates and the staff the Instructors Um whoever it was it was a very very um Positive experience so And and I kind of find I I I kind of Feel like I'm an introvert but I I had No problems communicating with people There Yeah I agree with joining too because There there are definitely times where

Um you have the opportunity to work on Things by yourself so that kind of at Least temporarily will kind of get your Mind off okay I have to either like be There for somebody all the time Um but I feel like it's also one of the Good things with closer does that It Prepares you to experiencing what is Going to be like when you actually join An engineering team because the reality Is you're actually not going to be Working by yourself once you're part of A company right so the ability to Um communicate well with others and Making sure that you're respectful and Vice versa and that's one thing that Cultivately holds ends on because Everybody that you'll never have to feel Like oh you're either getting you know Pushed too hard on a personal level or Something it's like prying into your Space like no we want to make sure that It's it's a good environment for both of You guys so if any case that you know You do kind of feel like you want some Sort of adjustment space like you can Always work with people there to to make That happen Um but I've never personally felt like Overwhelmed or anything and for me it Was it was good to be in that room Because you you get to you know learn a Lot more things based on the way people Approach different problems and that's a

Huge benefit versus just kind of doing Things by herself Yeah I um I think I did the remote Program so you that obviously has a Little bit more of Um an isolating element to it which can Be nice when you want to when you want That Um but like I said like I felt like the Community was very vibrant and very very Easy to talk to people and all that However I do I am an extroverted Introvert so it's hard for me to not Turn like personality on around people Even when I like need to turn it off And so it can get really fatiguing Um I personally though like didn't have Any extreme like social fatigue That said you know it's just it's long But the days are like lecture so you're Not you can ask questions during lecture But you're not like chit chatting and so You have like a lecture and then you Like have a thing you have to do and Then you have a lecture and then the Other thing you have to do so it's not Like 12 12 hours of like technically Communicating with someone and trying to Code like there's it's it's a little bit I mean the pace is fast but the Individual days you do have chunked out Sections to work on things and I will Say that um the team was extremely Um on top of it when it came to

Accommodations I have a friend and this Person has autism and there were certain Days where this person really had a hard Time you know coming to class and Engaging and that kind of thing and they Were that this person was able to Talk to the staff and have Accommodations made for for that for Their needs which was which was huge and Really really helped them get through The program and you know it really Helped accommodating their to Accommodate their learning style so I Think if you do have Um not necessarily that you have to have Like a like a a doctor's note reason to Require these accommodations but if you Do need accommodations for your mental Health that is something that is Prioritized explicitly during Um throughout the program and so if you Feel like today I can't turn my camera On I'm having issues you can send a Message you can keep your camera off Even though its expectation is that you Turn your camera on when you're present Like that's that's what I I was a fellow And I was there being like hey everybody Turn the cameras on please you know like Being annoying but I would know who was Allowed to have their camera off and not Necessarily I didn't have to know why if I wanted to keep it private but I knew Like you know so there is um there is

Consideration for different people's Social needs I guess and I thought that As long as you're willing to kind of Advocate for yourself Cody Smith is Willing to make space for those needs Nice I do think this is a good Consideration for like if Um you are considering after the program To do Fellowship like this is an Important thing to kind of uh just Personally Um kind of assess out yourself because With the fellowship it's not just doing Um handling the coursework part of it But also dealing with managing the Residents there so that's a layer of Like Um the emotional and the mental part of It that's important too so that should Be also taking into consideration if you Choose to to go that route along with The program Nice right on well I we we had one other Question but it it went down and I think We're running out of time but I do have One last question that I would like to Pose to our to our three panelists uh to Kind of just sum up you know your Experience if if we don't mind Um I'd love to know if we could if we Could turn back time and go back to when You were applying for the program if you Had knowing everything that you know now If you have the option to go in person

Or remote What would you do now Um Annette you want to kick us off Yeah I think I would still do in person Just because of my learning style Um but I will say it'll be nice to also Like baking a little bit of that Flexibility that comes along with with Being remote too because now that I've Worked from home for so long it's like Oh it's so nice just to go to the gym During the day and not have to like Worry about where I have to be in this Moment so uh ball a lot I feel like On-site would still be a good fit for me At least Chris Katrina how about you Yeah I think I think it's a tough question I'd still have to drive there but But it would have been a lot of fun to Get to engage with the other residents Um in person and I do think I would have Had to like weigh my options and Especially because one of my influences Toward doing this program was that my Cousin had done the in Pro person Los Angeles program Um and I very much followed her Footsteps she was a fellow so I was like I'm gonna try to Fellowship you know Like and so I think I have a hard time saying what I would

Have chosen had I the choice when I was Accepted to code Smith Um given the influences around me at the Time I might have been inclined to do in Person however Know thyself working from home really Works yeah it was really nice like it's It's so intense to begin with and I I Know what my personality type is and I Know The kind of fatigue that I experience From like having to go to a place and Just be Physically social like Um so I think I probably would have Continued with down the remote road Because but now I know that how well it Suits me I don't know if going into it I Would have known that and made the same Decision but knowing what I know now I Probably would do the remote program Because it really did just work really Well for me Um and I didn't feel as though I was Being squandered out of something I feel Like I got every everything I paid for And then some and then some Awesome awesome Dwayne what about you Man Yeah I would definitely do the in person Um just being around you know my current Mates community Um less distractions you know like I'm Fully I'm fully immersed and surrounded

In this uh program that You know it helps me focus more so And I think it builds a better bond with You know your your production project go After the coffee or whatever ping pong Or whatever have you so yeah I'll Definitely do that in person again Nice right on well uh let's uh everybody Unmute if you would and let's just give A huge round of applause for for our Panelists for uh for coming in and kind Of answering questions this evening It's uh it's exciting for me to to see How all of you have uh come along Throughout this time and and it's Interesting to see the uh the the kind Of differing opinions right it seems Like the folks that did it in person had A great experience and would still do it In person and the folks that did it Remotely it worked well for them right So I guess it it's really kind of uh up To you but um uh big shout out to y'all Thanks everybody

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