My first Bootcamp was very similar to exploring an incredibly dark cave without a flashlight, with a mentor cheerfully shouting instructions down to me. After a while, I found a flashlight, started exploring the cave a bit more, found a floodlight that illuminated the entire thing, then discovered an even larger cave next door. Over the course of four days I repeated that process about 10 times, finding larger and larger caves.
The Bootcamp exposed me to a whole host of technologies I hadn’t really encountered before. I have a background in Biomedical and Electrical Engineering from the University of Sydney, and so building out an enterprise-level software engineering project was an entirely new experience for me. It was my first intensive exposure to machine learning, which I found extremely fascinating. I enjoyed the project enormously, as well as the most helpful mentorship I received throughout.
I applied the skills I developed during the Bootcamp in my final semesters of university, and started skewing some of my projects more towards software engineering. While some of my lecturers might not have liked how much I was varying from their guidelines, I started enjoying the projects substantially more because I was able to build solutions I was far more interested in!
I now work as a contractor in Accenture Technology. The bulk of the work I do involves development on our internal suite of machine learning applications, and building those for internal and external use. No matter what your long-term career aspirations are, the Bootcamp is a fantastic experience: you meet amazing people, learn new technologies and get to experience a bit of the Accenture culture. My only recommendation for those thinking of joining it is for them to have a solid interest in programming and come willing to learn!
With regard to starting a career in technology, just be interested and excited to learn something new. Volunteer to join new projects, or take the difficult projects. If you’re unsure about anything, work hard to figure it out as you go along.