Cross-Country Coding Adventures: The Story of Justin Honey, a US Air Force Veteran
The three essential ingredients to achieving anything worthwhile are hard work, stick-toitiveness, and common sense.
There are many options available to members of the armed forces for securing employment after their military service. However, they’re not always clear. From 2008 to 2012, Justin Honey was a member of the United States Air Force. He looked for a career that would capitalize on his hard work ethic, persistence, and determination as he returned to civilian life. After working as a Mental Health Technician for one year, he then worked in an auto detailing shop where he earned $20 an hour for painting cars. He didn’t think about becoming a developer until he heard of friends and their decent lives just months after being introduced web development.
A friend of mine does IIoT programming and suggested that I look into it. My girlfriend knew someone who had gotten a job through a bootcamp. That was a situation where I thought, “Oh, this guy didn’t know anything a whole year ago and now he works as a software engineer.”
He wanted to move from Colorado, to Albany, NY. Therefore, securing a skill set in high demand was crucial to his ability to pursue a career in the field of employment. Justin tried his hand at Codecademy online courses and instructional books while he was still in Colorado. He was successful. His full-time job made learning a new trade difficult. Justin considered how he could dedicate enough time to learn web development skills. There were plenty of bootcamp options available, but Justin found that most focused on just one or two languages and took a lot of time doing it.
My friend who is a programmer told me that Java was his only language. It’s difficult to get into the second framework, the second way to program, if you’re already familiar with something. There are many bootcamps that offer six months of one thing. That’s the one thing I decided I didn’t want: to be good at Ruby.
Justin discovered Coding Dojo’s unique three-full-stack programming while on vacation in Colorado. He enrolled in the online course. He realized that he would be more successful if he attended the bootcamp in person, so he transferred his enrollment to Tulsa bootcamp. After he realized a significant advantage, he decided to enroll in the Coding Dojo Bellevue bootcamp. He also took another cross-country trip to California’s West Coast.
Because I was still learning, I initially enrolled at the Tulsa campus. Then I discovered that the Bellevue campus actually accepted the GI Bill(r). I was all set to take out loans and do all the other stuff, but then I realized I didn’t really need them. I had only five months so it was …”sign me.
Justin was able to complete Coding Dojo’s precourse work before he moved from coast to coast. This helped him greatly when he got to the Python stack algorithms. Justin struggled to understand the CSS and HTML pillars of front-end design when the program began in earnest. This is when Coding Dojo’s bootcamp structure gave Justin the motivation to continue. His colleagues were equally eager to understand and the collaborative spirit sprung into action.
You can rely on each others a lot… I enjoyed helping others and I also appreciated the help of others. I believe I have friends that I will have for the rest of my lives.
Justin mastered his Coding Dojo courses in a matter of weeks. He worked as hard as 80 hours per week to learn all the material. Justin took his final exam two week early, which gave him time to plan his post-graduation job search. He also had time to work with the Coding Dojo Career Services staff to strengthen his resume and apply for jobs in the greater New York region. However, a twist of fate changed his plans.
My plan was to apply for a few jobs each day and then work on the project. Then, lo and behold, I spent the entire week answering phones, emails, and conducting phone interviews. It was hard because I wanted to complete this project. I wanted to do some C++ stuff because there were many C++ jobs in my region. I didn’t get very far because I got too distracted by the job search. But that’s what’s the point. Two weeks after graduating, I had a job.
Justin is now working for Bestpass, which manages tolls in the trucking industry. He is responsible for dev