In 7 Months, We’re Going to be Software Engineers!

I’m so happy I don’t know where to start.

Lambda

You’ve heard me mention Lambda School in previous posts, right? (If not, go here and here.) They’re a Silicon Valley-based Y Combinator-backed tech company (education technology, to be more precise) that’s revolutionizing computer science education.

What makes them so revolutionary? Well, it has something to do with their business model. They allow their students to take a complete course on Computer Science with zero upfront fee! That means the student gets a free computer science education for the entire duration of the course, which is 6 months, and only pays Lambda School back once he or she gets a high-paying tech job (i.e., a salary of at least $50,000 for US residents) after graduation in the form of an Income Sharing Agreement, which is 17% from the student’s monthly salary for two years.

Isn’t that awesome? For US residents, that means no more student loans and credits. For non-US residents, that means you don’t have to come up with $20,000, which is the price of the course if ever you’ll opt to pay for it upfront.

You know how much $20,000 is in Philippine Peso? Over 1 million! In other words, a crazy amount of money, especially in Third World standards. So more than a month ago, Lambda School’s Computer Science Academy was only an unreachable dream for me.

Now, however, that is no longer the case.

I applied for the full-time course more times than I can count. I must’ve appeared very annoying to their Admissions team. I just pestered them with application after application, inquiry after inquiry, through Slack, email, Facebook Messenger, and Twitter.

And you know what happened next? A few months later, they decided to open their doors to international students, as an experiment. The demand for it must have been great. However, they warned that the acceptance rate will be very low, since there are already a high number of US-based students in their classes.

Undaunted by the odds against us (for my wife was interested in Lambda School, as well), we applied yet again for the full course. And miracle of miracles, we got scheduled for interviews! Karen Zachary, their Admissions Director, called us a few weeks after that. We did not get our hopes too high up, though, because we knew that our chances were still slim. Yet, a couple days later, we received this email:

Acceptance Email From Karen Zachary

Sweet! It feels too good to be true, yet it is true.

Our classes will start on April, so we’ll probably be finished sometime in October. That means that by October, or November at the latest, my wife and I — God willing! — will be Software Engineers. Crazy, right? And yet a few months ago that seemed a very remote possibility.

Of course, there’s still a very wide gulf that separates us from our dream of becoming Software Engineers (for learning Computer Science will be extremely difficult, especially since we have very little background in CS and programming, although we did take Lambda School’s free mini coding bootcamp, which was a pre-course), but at least now, Lambda has given us that bridge that brings us nearer to our goal. Now, all we have to do is put in the work every single day for 6 months.

In preparation, we will be reading some of the resources Lambda School suggested we look into: the Mozilla Developers’ Network; Codecademy’s intro to HTML, CSS, and JavaScript courses; and the book Eloquent JavaScript by Marijn Haverbeke. We have a little less than a month left before the fun (and battle) starts.

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