Advice from a Business major turned Data Analyst
What inspired you to learn to code?
I didn’t start learning to code until after going to college for business administration.
I worked my butt off to graduate with honors and do cool internships — but I still found it difficult to find a job. They were asking for skills I didn’t have because I was never told I should learn them.
I had to figure out how to code. Googling, I came across Codecademy. I had tried a lot of other formats, but they weren’t working well for me.
I really liked the way that Codecademy walked me through the process. It wasn’t overly structured, and it really worked well with my learning style to be both hands on, but unstructured.
How has coding impacted your life?
Coding made me an asset. I feel super confident in my job because there are things I bring to the table — things I’ve taken classes on, worked hard for, and showed I can do.
It doesn’t take too long to learn these skills, especially compared to four years of education. I did Codecademy for 3–6 months on a full-time basis and built enough skills to be hired into a more senior position.
Depending on your specialization, there’s not as much competition, so you’re creating job security for yourself.
Describe your dream project.
One project I would love to do is use data to predict which tenants are likely to be in an eviction scenario and identify those people earlier on.
If we can do that, we can reach out to them specifically and ask, “Are you having issues? Are you aware of these resources? Can we get you on a payment plan?”
Those are the types of opportunities I would really like to work on in the future — combining big data and automation, then using that to help people.
Any advice for those who are new to coding?
Look at the city you want to live in. Look at the jobs. Look for the cool companies you want to work for. Look at the skills they’re asking for, and go learn those skills.
That’s my economics background. I see things as supply- and demand-oriented. If there’s a demand for a role, you need to fill that supply. If you want to get paid well and have job security, take classes on the stuff they want you to know.