Blog #3: And We’re Off…

We started this week by having a round-table meeting and splitting up the various tasks we had detailed in our project plan. Surprisingly, we were able to complete this task in only about an hour and a half or so. Then we were off to the races and each of us began to tackle the tasks we had laid out for this week, Week #3.

All of us were brand new to React so this was obviously the first step. Some of us turned to the official tutorial to get our feet wet while the others, like myself, found a Crash Course video on Youtube. React, Vue js and Angular are all popular front end frameworks as of lately, but React has definitely been the fastest growing one in recent few years. After this week, I think I’m beginning to understand why. First of all, React is just so flexible. A React application is full of what’s called components, and each component can then be whatever you design it to be – button, grid, paragraph, etc. On the other hand, JSX, the syntax extension we use to write React, looks just like a template and after some getting used to, feels just right for utilizing Javascript. And with the support of Facebook and many OSS contributors, this popular framework was definitely the ideal choice to choose for our project and I’m so glad we’re all learning it at the same time.

And while all of us had created Node.js apps, some of us like myself, agreed to do a refresher course on it to make sure that developing the back end portion of the project will be as easy as it can be. Luckily, there were a lot of crash courses on Youtube that’ll bring us right back up to speed.

Stay tuned for what we’ll be completing next week and how we’re faring!

Blog #2: Beginning Our Project

In the beginning of the term, I was fortunate and able to meet like-minded and smart individuals that wanted to work on the same projects as I did. Thankfully, we were able to stay as a team and get assigned our first choice project – Dating App for Animal Adoption. My personal motivation for choosing this project and other web apps stems from my desire to work in the web development field after graduation. I also wanted to choose this project because I’ve always loved animals and I’m actually looking to adopt in the next several months so this project was the obvious choice.

Dating App for Animal Adoption is a responsive web app that’ll allow animal shelters to create pet listings as “dating profiles” for potential adopters to match and adopt. There’s numerous features that we’ll need to implement for the project, such as account management, login, sort and filter for the dating profiles, and CRUD features for the dating profiles.

In today’s landscape, there are many different ways to create a full-stack web app. We ultimately decided on using React for the front end, Express and NodeJS for our back end, and Google Cloud Datastore as our database. While all of us are new to React, we’re all equally excited to learn it and implement it in our project. We considered Angular as our other front end framework option but ultimately chose React due to its growing popularity in recent years and its easier learning curve when compared to Angular. We had a small debate for our database option as well, and ended up choosing Datastore as our database since my other team members have experience using it while I didn’t have a real preference.

It feels a bit overwhelming and daunting to have to learn a new framework and a new database but I’m also incredibly excited at the same time. Like they always say, “Growth only comes when you’re uncomfortable”!

Blog #1: My Journey So Far.

The idiom “Time flies when you’re having fun” is one that we as a society often use. And for me, I can’t think of a more appropriate time to express this quote than when reflecting on my own journey in the OSU post-bacc program that I began almost 2 years ago. It really has been a fun, but arduous journey.

In my first degree, I graduated as a marketing major. Shortly after, I began my career post-college in the digital advertising industry as an account coordinator, and later after a promotion, account manager. While I loved working with the people in that particular company, the work itself just never felt satisfying. Instead, I yearned for a different career that would involve more problem solving and critical thinking. So when a close friend asked where I saw myself in 5 years, I looked back to my high school days and thought about my AP intro to Java course and how happy I’d be to solve problems as an engineer for a career. A week later, I applied to OSU’s program and 2 years later, here I am.

Now the final step in this journey is landing a co-op or full-time software engineering position. I’m really looking forward to working but am also nervous as I’m applying without any internship experience. Hopefully my side projects and preparedness for technical interviews will carry me through! And if you have any suggestions/tips on getting hired, please send them my way 🙂