But if you want to know my story, continue reading...
I have been a software developer for six years. Most of my experience is with .Net, but I also have some experience with JavaEE and mobile development. Currently, I am learning NodeJS and Python. I have collaborated on more than 20 projects.
As a kid, I always had a thing for technology. I created my first website when I was 11 years old. The Internet of "back then" was very different. I had a monthly subscription to Club Nintendo (the Mexican equivalent of Nintendo Power). In 1997, if I recall correctly, they published small tutorials on how to create your first website with HTML 4.
It was very basic. A simple Hello World! with a black background and white letters. That was enough for me to get started.
When I was 12, I asked my mother to buy me a book about HTML 4. At age 13 I started to learn Flash and I was into amateur video game development. At age 15 I had interest in 3D modeling and animation.
Then, something happened. Age (adolescence), I suppose, but I stopped learning. I was not the best high school student, and when I started Computer Science in college I didn't do much better. I failed basic introductory courses. I was devastated.
Why am I an underperformer, when this is supposed to be my passion?
That question haunted me for years. Programming frightened me. I was about to become a college dropout or change my profession entirely. I considered graphic design and nutrition.
Teachers had doubts about me. The problem was not programming or the teachers, but havings doubts about myself.
That period of my life was a very complicated one, both personally and financially. I was 23, with less than a half of my studies completed, unemployed and penniless.
In 2009 and 2010, I created a small video game development company with college friends. We did create some short demos, but the company had to close because of lack of funding.
A friend of mine found a job opportunity as a Jr Developer for a company called Netmark, he told me that I should apply. "But I'm not a good developer", I said. He encouraged me to do it, and in 3 weeks I had a response, "your first day is this Monday". That was in April 2011.
It was hard in the beginning. At first, Sr Developers helped me, but in the end, they simply said: "you're on your own now."
And I started to learn again. Step by step. I teamed up with more experienced programmers to learn from them. I started to read and do exercises on a daily basis. One day, an entire sprint was assigned to me and the client was very happy with the results. I received applause. A co-worker said:
I've been with this company for five years now, and this has never happened.
I worked in that company for almost three years. In 2013, I moved to a small start-up and shortly after that to a medium enterprise.
My academic background is in Information Technology Management. Even though we learn the core concepts of computer science there, I consider myself a self-taught programmer.
In 2014 I knew I wanted to learn more. That next year I applied to a master's degree in Information Technology at Carnegie Mellon and I was accepted. I was speechless.
In 2015 I started the master's and I changed jobs once again. That period of my life was one of the most brutal. Working and studying is hard, particularly if you are in a global company and in Carnegie Mellon.
Fast forward two years and a half, and that company that once hired me offered me a promotion as a Software Architect.
Where am I going? is a tough question no one can answer. Throughout this process, I have learned to be prepared for everything that life throws at you.
I want to keep learning, at some point I'd like to have my own company; I see myself as a developer in the mid-term, in the long-term it is uncertain.
This is my story.