From a sceptical PhD to an OutSystems Development addict in 12 weeks!

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Context (upon enrollment at ITUp):

Before enrolling into one of ITUp’s courses I got a PhD in Evolutionary Genetics. During that time, I played a role in network and infrastructure management at the Lab where I did my research. I was also the Project Manager of my own research project. As the perspective of continuing working as an researcher would only grow slim (emigration, scholarships, teaching), and none of them was appealing to me, I decided I should try to find my way into the corporate employment market.

I started by doing some hours at callcenters (inbound), I went through a brief period as a McDonalds’ Administrative Assistant in a high frequency restaurant after which I was employed by a Company that did multimedia solutions for marketing events and museums, as an Executive Assistant.

Circumstances have gathered and the Company went into a difficult period. I was given a choice and opted out in April, 2015. Meanwhile I had started taking some online programming courses on my own time at Coursera, since December, 2014. I sort of introduced myself to a couple of programming languages such as Python, C# and Java until October, 2015. By that time, I was already unemployed.

In September 2015 I was contacted by Luís Campos to Schedule a meeting/interview to in order to assess the viability of me enrolling into a pilot course in a RAPD development platform of which I had never heard of before, OutSystems!

Educational experience at ITUp:

The experience I have of learning at ITUp could not be better!
The work environment is excellent; the teaching methods are quite friendly and motivating/engaging and the subjects/activities are quite well organized.
The teachers are always present and go out of their way to make themselves available for extra time and giving needed advice and/or enlightenment and precious insights on the subjects given in classes.

Of course, nothing can ever get done without self-commitment and a lot of work.  Besides the curricular hours, there has also been quite some nocturnal extra time spent trying to complete exercises and studying the materials available online about the Platform. But nobody makes you run the extra mile! Those such as myself who feel motivated and engaged, go out of their way to reach the finish line voluntarily!

Challenges are taken very seriously and ITUp’s team put their everything and then some into every course they start. They are always 100% committed! ITUp’s courses are demanding and compact. Most of all to those like me whose educational/professional background isn’t exactly computer science hard core related. Oh, but it’s worth it!

You really need to have an open mind to embrace Low Code philosophy. Make no mistake, “dragging balls” is not exempt of thinking capacity and does not mean nonchalance. The only thing implied in Low Code philosophy is a diminished need to worry about minor things, which leaves the developer more available to more challenging matters of the project he/she has on hands, usually with a strict deadline and a lot of expectations to be managed on the client’s part.

This is what I kept from the education I got while taking an ITUp course. And thus, nowadays …

Post-education results:

– This experience had an enormous impact in my life, no doubt! Thanks to the opportunity that was given to me and which I grabbed with all my strength, I found a long-lost Joana, in the midst of the apathy of less challenging functions that I was to perform for about 10 years. I got back to believing in my self-worth, I got back to being able to lead my own path and I got back to believing that the future could actually be quite exciting and appropriate to develop my managing, researching, problem solving, organizing and leading skills.

I am a lot happier and I feel I have a purpose. I never regretted the decision I made after finishing my PhD, but I did go through a rough period when I needed all my strength and perseverance to thrive and be where I am now. I wasn’t easy. However, I knew it was necessary and a part of my journey and patience was a much-needed quality. While I was working hard to get here, I always felt motivated and ITUp’s contact has shown me that commitment does pay off.

The main point to a career change, I think, is to define what one wants (and what one doesn’t want!!), to define goals and to focus really hard to attain the self-proposed finish line. It is absolutely crucial to know how to “break the elephant” into smaller pieces and execute a step at the time. It is also of utmost importance to know how to manage time to undertake those steps and fight the urge to do all at once, while still not wasting time waiting around when you can do a little more. This is EVERYTHING!

– Nowadays I am happier and happier at what I call my second home where I was welcomed with open arms and where since the first days, I was allowed to show my skills and felt that I was given credit! Arguably, nothing tastes better than this! Challenges are constant and pulse and fiber are in demand. One must learn when to say “no” when “no” is in order. There are moments of great pressure and frustration and moments of really high satisfaction provided by the sensation of fulfilled duty. There are moments of great cohesion in team work and also great relaxing and fun moments. It’s a normal work environment where people matter! Rhythm is strong around here, quick paced, but those who want to ride the train, can do it. And we can! Luz Saúde is a good second home to me. I tis where I am and i tis where I want to be.

In conclusion:

Do I recommend ITUp training program to all of those who, like me, want to change their path and live an active, stimulating, fulfilling life? – Of course!!!!

What I think still sets ITUp apart from all the other OutSystems Training Centers currently available? The variety of subjects approached, which go much deeper and further than just the technical contents provided by OutSystems itself and the personalized follow-up that only ITUp manages to offer. The commitment and belief in each and every one of the trainees without leaving anyone behind. All those who really want to, will be successful! And they can achieve more in ITUp training than in any other training center. This is why, if you are 100% sure that this is you want to do with your, don’t give it a second thought: enroll, stay and be all in!

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