Blog #4: Overcoming the mountain

As said in my previous blogs, I struggled extremely in the beginning program. I never really had a problem with school. I usually got by with decent grades and never really put in too much effort. After I took Discrete Mathematics, this program humbled me really quickly. From Discrete Mathematics to Data Structures, I really thought that I wasn’t fit to be in this program. It wasn’t until I took Algorithms, Databases, and Operating Systems where it started to click.

When I entered Algorithms, I knew I had to do well in this class since it would become the foundation of the entire program. I was extremely nervous about it and studied endlessly. I changed my study habits and tried to put the most effort I’ve ever put into a class. Through the skin of my teeth, I passed the class with flying colors. I realized that it actually wasn’t too hard. At the beginning of the program, I was trying too hard to know everything when I should have just studied the overarching concepts of each project.

My biggest challenge was when I enrolled in Operating Systems. OS is by far the hardest class I’ve ever taken in my entire life. It really pushed my limits as a student because the projects took an enormous amount of effort. After I completed the class, I realized that my hard work paid off. No matter how difficult the project, as long as I trusted my own skills, anything is possible.

Blog #3: My New Career

Welcome to another blog post! This post will contain a more in depth look into my new job that I will partaking in after my last quarter. As said in my 2nd blog post, I was extremely nervous at the idea of SWE interviews. Since I struggled heavily in the beginning of the course, I would consistently doubt my own capabilities. However, I trudged through and bet on myself. I actually landed this offer pretty early within the job hunting process and have been extremely blessed to have something to lean on through my last two quarters of the program.

My incoming role is in Michigan, for it will a complete culture shock for me since I’ve lived on the west coast my entire life. The role is specifically for new grads and is a rotational program. Just like OSU’s post bacc program, I believe rotational programs would be extremely beneficially for me since I’ve come from a different working background. Rotational programs allow SWEs who’ve had no experience to gain as much experience as they can. It usually involved three to four rotations of different positions. This would give the participant a better understanding of the culture and process of an SWE compared to being assigned one role for the rest of your time there.

After accepting this offer, I am extremely excited to start working and have been developing a bit of senioritis (which is bad!). Knowing that I get to rotate between four different positions and decide which position I like best is extremely exciting. Since I have no experience, this position would be a great stepping stone in my career in software.

Blog Post #2: My Journey So Far

Going into this program, I was extremely nervous for job interviews. The Software Engineering interview process is, in my opinion, the most unique and difficult job process out there. Early in the program, I struggled immensely. This was the first time I’ve ever really struggled in school. However, this only pushed me to improve my coding skills for future interviews.

I started interviewing after Intro to Algorithms, for I felt like it was the final foundation I needed to start leetcoding. Prepping for interviews was the hardest part. Going through countless of leetcode questions was extremely draining. After I felt a bit comfortable, I started to apply EVERYWHERE. My best friends are all Software Engineers. Before I entered the program and while they were looking for jobs, I would also ask them “Hey why don’t you apply here?” They would always tell me that it’s not that simple. After sending hundreds of applications, I fully understand now. Even though the demand for SWEs is high, getting an interview is almost near impossible. You’re competing with hundreds of other people who have similar, if not better, projects and experience than you. However, I continued to gruel out the interviews and trust my own experience. After hundreds of rejections, I was finally able to secure a new grad position in Michigan. Even though it’s far from where I currently live, I am extremely grateful to have something secured going into my final quarter. It also gives me leverage for any other interviews that I’m currently applying for.

For capstone, I wanted to build something different. I’ve already worked on full stack web applications for CS340 and CS493, and I wanted to work in app development this time. Thankfully, I was assigned with the cross platform discussion application for my project, and I’m really excited. I’m an avid user of Reddit, and it’s exciting to work on something similar to it. I’m also excited to learn React, for I know it’s one of the popular frameworks in the world.

Blog Post #1: Introduction

Hello! My name is Ryan Farol, and this will be my first blog post for CS467. I’m just going to talk a bit about myself and how I ended up at OSU. I’ll also be talking about my future plans after this program.

To start off, I’m 25 years old and living in Los Angeles, CA. My road to become an aspiring software engineer is a bit different compared to other people. I received my previous degree in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing at University of California, Riverside. Going out of college, it was my dream to work within the film and TV industry by creating marketing campaigns for upcoming releases. My first two jobs started off pretty rough. I was actually laid off both times due to both agencies losing key clients and budget constraints. Since I was merely an entry level employee, I received the short end of the stick. However, my most recent position was, as some would call, my “dream job.” I became an Account Manager for multiple clients and was in charge of creating TV advertisement campaigns for them.

At first, I was ecstatic about the role. Over time, I started to question if this is really what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I wanted to pursue something more challenging and thought provoking while being proud of the work I did on a daily basis. All of my closest friends are software engineers, and they pushed me to continue my education in CS. After a month of searching, I stumbled upon OSU’s post-bacc CS program, and the rest is history.

This program has been an amazing experience so far. At the start of the program, I found myself struggling immensely which only pushed me to improve my coding skills. Midway through the program, I became extremely nervous at the thought of job hunting knowing that my experience pales in comparison to other students who have been doing this for the past 4+ years. However, I still kept my head high and continued to trudge through the program. After hundreds of rejections, I finally received an offer as a SWE at an automotive company for their new grad program. So if I can do it, anyone else can!

In terms of my hobbies and interests, I’m a die hard sports fan which includes the Lakers, Rams, Dodgers, and USC football (LET’S GO LA!). I’m also a movie and video game addict. I follow Esports (specifically League of Legends) pretty religiously. I try to stay fit by playing basketball, hiking, and walking. Lastly, I’m also getting married by the end of this year!

Here’s a photo of me and fiancĂ© dressing up as Carl and Ellie from UP when we went to Disneyland!

Cheers!