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From consultant at the EU to Web Dev in a startup.

In Belgium, you can cross the road of 166 nationalities. It is a place of countless opportunities. It's a country that Federico, (who is half Portuguese, half Italian and raised in Brussels) decided not to leave. He has worked for the European Union as many other young professionals in the city. But then, he felt he needed to upskill his technical knowledge.

What made you choose the Wagon? 

Before joining Le Wagon, I took a few online classes but I still felt lost. I had the impression to be stuck in the "tutorial world": where you keep watching tutorials but without actually building or doing anything. I decided to look for ways to step up my skills and found Le Wagon Brussels. Learning to build and link everything together from A to Z looked amazing! 

But at the time, I had a job as a consultant at the European Commission. So I waited a bit, but the intention remained in the back of my head, waiting for the perfect moment to strike again. One year later, my girlfriend started studying computer science at University and that's when it came back: I wanted to do Le Wagon! That’s when I stopped looking for excuses and enrolled for the summer 2019 Bootcamp!

What marked your experience at the Wagon?

What marked me at the Wagon was actually two things:

1 - The teachers and teaching assistants.

2 - How the courses are built.

The teachers and TAs are amazing. Since most of them also did the Bootcamp they know exactly the difficulties you are facing. And they are patient. Sooooooooo patient. I remember that sometimes they wanted us to ask more questions! 

Regarding the courses, it only took me a few days to start understanding how well everything is built: the coding challenges, their order, the extra challenges that introduce you to the next steps,... Everything is super clear and built to guide you in the right direction, but without doing the whole job for you.

The most challenging for me, to be honest, was the front-end. You cannot imagine the pain I went through to find matching colors... You should see my first front-end project. It will burn your eyes.

Can you tell us more about the product you developed during your last two weeks at Le Wagon?

The project was an idea of a colleague of mine (we happen to work at the same place now!) who was always saying how difficult it is to find a safe place to store your bike. So the idea was to build an app to link garage owners who had some extra place and bikers who needed to keep their bicycles safe.

How did you manage to stay motivated throughout the training?

You don't need to make much effort to stay motivated. Since you spend most of your days doing challenges and you learn new exciting things every day, the motivation is easy to find!


Tell us what happened after Le Wagon?

I enjoyed Le Wagon so much that in the middle of the Bootcamp I decided to resign from my job and start over as a developer.
I still had to go back to the European Commission for a month, but afterward, I started working at Seraphin as a full-stack developer. Being full-stack means you do a bit of everything (or at least try)!

The two main technologies that we use are Ruby(rails) for the back end and Vue.js for the front end. We also work with Amazon AWS serverless lambda microservices, node.js, and other things.

The challenge right after the Bootcamp was to keep on learning. Not that it is negative, quite the opposite! I realized that what I have learned at Le Wagon is amazing but it is just the tip of the iceberg: an entirely new world of knowledge and cool things await!

Are you happy about this turn in your life?

I am really happy! I couldn't have made a better decision!

What are your tips for those who want to become a developer after the training?

If you don't find a job right away, don't stop looking for one and especially don't stop practicing. You can quickly forget what you have learned if you don't keep practicing. Also, if you can, do an internship first instead of going directly for a job. Why? because as an intern you don't have so much pressure to deliver. The pressure you have is to learn. It will pay off in the long run!

Le Wagon is a community above all. Has this network been useful to you?

I found the job I currently have thanks to Le Wagon's network. So yes! Also, if in the future I plan to relocate to a city where the Wagon is present I will for sure use the network again!

More about Le Wagon Brussels... 

If you'd like to see more of inspiring content from our alumni or be the first to know about our free workshops and talks, join our network HERE.
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