I have been through a fair amount of education. The standard K-12 in a small, beach town in New Hampshire (yes there are 14 miles of beautiful coastline in NH), college at THE Ohio State University, a term abroad at the Université de Burgogne in France, a few Computer Science courses at the University of New Hampshire and this past summer I began a graduate program in Software Engineering at Boston University.
Testing and Feedback
While in grad school it was great learning about theories and processes behind object-oriented design, studying engineering processes such as Agile and (the loathed) Waterfall, but the practicality of programming was allusive. Professors would harp on about my first engineering position being filled with long days of writing tests and fixing bugs and they seemed to shy away from the notion that we could be productive developers right out of the gates. I refused to take this as gospel.
Learning about Startup Institute Boston
on Quora was a much welcomed alternative. SIB confirmed my belief that not every engineer at Google, Twitter, *insert-famous-internet-company-here* came from a QA position at Oracle or Microsoft. And along the way, it offered an infinite amount of opportunities to learn the ins and outs of all-things-startup. Across all four tracks of SIB the atmosphere was teeming with lessons around the art of networking, how to work on teams, the principles of founding a company, how to run said company, the importance of mentors and did I mention networking?
The education, network, and learning were great. I am one of the many from my class with a job at an amazing company here in Boston. The people I had the privilege of meeting through the program were (and still are) the greates part of SIB. The friends I made taught me to look at life through a more open lens. The mentors I met continue to teach me valuable lessons on a daily basis. And the network (well, the first real professional connection I made) led to the career of my dreams as a productive iOS developer— the polar opposite of the aforementioned QA gig.
Startup Institute Boston
All of this however, did not come without a price. The schedule was intense and the workload at times, overwhelming. My parents watched my dog. I hacked away on the weekends like it was my job. And my social calendar was less full of meeting up with old friends and snowboarding and chock full of networking events, office-warming parties, lunch meetings and talks over coffee. Every moment flew by and exceeded my expectations 10 fold. After 16+ years of traditional education and over three of not-so-relevant professional experience, my eight weeks at SIB left an impact that will no-doubt last a lifetime.