Like many of us, Robert Pullan reached a level of success in his life, and then realized he wasn’t satisfied with the direction his career had taken. He’d served five years in the British military after high school, but life as a vehicle mechanic wasn’t where his ambitions lay. Robert had held an interest in computers and programming since before he enlisted, but after leaving the military, his first experiences working “in tech” meant working as an IT technician, and that didn’t inspire him. What the experience did do, was motivate Robert to start researching the life of a developer; through that research, he came to realize there WERE ways for him to forge a career in programming.
Robert started an intense effort to learn new skills and gain valuable experience. Today, he’s a graduate of two Nanodegree programs, and he’s also on course to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in mathematics from a UK university. Best of all, he’s landed an exciting new job as a junior software developer!
We spoke with Robert about his journey to a career as a developer.
Earlier this year, Udacity and Google announced the Google Developer Scholarship for students across the EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region. On offer was the chance to land a scholarship for Udacity’s Android Basics, Android Developer, Mobile Web Specialist, or Front-End Web Developer Nanodegree programs.
It was an incredibly popular announcement that led to 60,000 scholarship recipients gaining the opportunity to take part in the first Challenge Course phase of the program. There, they started learning the latest programming skills and building their own projects. Then, in the second phase, 6,000 of the top performers earned the opportunity to undertake a full Nanodegree program.
Willian Ver Valem Paiva has come a long way—both geographically, and in his career. He’s gone from Brazil to France, via Ireland, and he’s recently landed an incredible new role as a Lead Artificial Intelligence Engineer at a start-up in Bordeaux.
Growing up in Sao Paulo, Willian spent hours working out how to program his computer. It became his passion, and he knew he wanted a career working with computers. When he started looking at universities, he found he simply couldn’t afford the expensive fees to pursue a computer science program in Brazil. What he found instead was a company that would sponsor him to study engineering. It wasn’t the subject he loved, but at least it was a degree program. Within a few years however, he realized he’d made the wrong choice, so he did something very bold. He emptied his savings, left his program, and got on a plane.
This is the story of what happened next.
After twenty years as a software engineer, this lifelong learner decided to enroll in Udacity’s Machine Learning Nanodegree program, and he now has an amazing new role as a Data Scientist!
Over the course of his twenty-year career in software development, Antal Berenyi has learned many important lessons. Perhaps the most important of these is the need to keep learning and redefining what you do. Antal just graduated from Udacity’s Machine Learning Nanodegree program, and he’s now applying the skills he learned in the program to a new data scientist role. He’s a passionate advocate for the positive impact machine learning can have on society, and he’s made it his mission to play a leading role in making this happen.
We spoke with Antal to learn how he acquired his new machine learning skills, and how he used his project portfolio to land his new role.
He got kicked out of high school in Ohio. Today, he’s the co-founder of a blockchain technology firm.
Parker McCurley is the co-founder of decent, an exciting new software development and consultancy firm specializing in blockchain technology. He lives in Miami, spends his free time at the beach, and travels the world for his business. His company is making money, and he’s now contributing his subject matter expertise to Udacity’s Blockchain Developer Nanodegree program.
In short, life is going really well for Parker. Yet his trajectory could easily have been very different, were it not for his dedication to learning and one unexpected conversation that opened his eyes to a new career.
Eric Persson completed a Master’s in Industrial Engineering and Management five years ago. When he graduated, he considered enrolling in Udacity’s Data Analyst Nanodegree program, because data had become a real passion for him. At the same time, he’d just spent five years studying to become an engineer—not a data scientist—so Eric decided to follow through on the career path he’d already started.
Five years later, Eric had a great engineering job and was working in Tokyo. He liked his job, but he hadn’t shaken his interest in data. He looked again at the Data Analyst Nanodegree program and, this time, he enrolled. Right before he graduated, he landed an exceptional data scientist role with a company back home in Sweden. Now he is elated to say that he has the career he first dreamt of when he left university! This is how it happened:
After Alexandre Campino finished undergraduate and graduate studies in aerospace engineering, he took a leap into the unknown and moved to Southern California from his native Portugal. He started looking for an aerospace role, but despite two years of trying, he was unable to break into the US aerospace industry, and was forced to concede that the field appeared closed to him.
It was a tough realization, but Alexandre found a way to turn the obstacle into opportunity. He went back to the drawing board and broadened his job search. He thought hard about the skills he already had, and he looked for industries and roles where his engineering experience would be an asset. That’s when he discovered data science. He saw job opportunities in data everywhere he looked, so he was sure it was a sector in demand. Better yet, it was an industry that had immediate appeal because it used many of the data skills he’d learned throughout his graduate studies.
So Alexandre got busy—he looked at the job requirements of data roles he wanted, and set about building his skill set to meet them. Today, he is a graduate of Udacity’s Data Analyst Nanodegree program, and he’s working in a data role at an internet company he proudly says is “the best company to work for in the country!”