by PDX Code Guild - March 30, 2015
Loved and Learned at StartUp Weekend
Participating in StartUp Weekend Seattle: Data Science was one of the most fun and challenging parts of my time during Code Guild. StartUp Weekend is my kind of fun. The challenge is to build a startup – business plan, MVP, and pitch – in 54 hours. Loved: Being in a room with so many other hustlers. It takes a special kind of drive (or maybe a special kind of crazy?) to spend your weekend at StartUp Weekend. The people I met were driven, creative, energetic and so, so kind. Walking into a room and introducing myself as a developer. This was powerful! Up until this point, I introduced myself as a student. At StartUp weekend, I introduced myself as a developer – and nobody questioned me. It was a huge confidence boost as I prepare to start job hunting. Taking on a big project and testing myself. There were no teachers or tutors at StartUp Weekend. I ended being the only developer on my team. I wanted the challenge so I volunteered to create the website. . .by myself. . .in a weekend. It was incredibly satisfying to stretch myself and see what I can do. Learned: CodeGuild has taught me so, so much. To be clear, I knew going in that I had learned a ton during the bootcamp. I don’t think I truly understood the complexity of what I had learned. At one point, some of my team members offered to help. I am pretty good at delegating and teaching so I figured I could quickly teach them some basic CSS and get their help on the front end while I continued to work on the backend. I could not. What I have learned through Code Guild is more complex and valuable than I realized. I have so much more to learn. There were times when I felt like an awkward, adorable adolescent labrador – you know that stage when their feet are too big for their body? That was me. I knew enough to create the website but am still learning best practices, efficiency tricks, and how to appropriately estimate project length. A ton about working with a team. For this project, I got to work with designer, a business team, data scientists, and the project visionary. Everyone had different priorities, areas of expertise, and areas where they lacked expertise. We worked together to bridge those differences and co-create an awesome project. I am now a complete StartUp Weekend Junkie and I can’t wait for the next one.