During January, I will be posting (tentatively) one post every day as part of the #bloganuary challenge
Today’s Prompt: Write about a dream you remember.
I don’t think I like this prompt. I almost never remember my dreams and when I do they are completely senseless. A bunch of pieces and subconscious information glued together like a puzzle that doesn’t fit. Most of the time when I wake up and can remember my dream I am able to identify each piece. Like what triggered each part but they still look completely senseless. Like dreaming about missing the flight or lost luggage when I’m a few days away from a trip. Dreams are nothing more than your brain processing information while you sleep. So, today, I will skip the prompt and instead of talking about a dream I remember, I will talk about something else. A goal.
First, I am late. I am posting this on the 26th and I know this is cheating but Covid wreaked havoc here and since Friday the five of us have been testing positive gradually. We are all fine (thank you, VACCINE!!!), no major symptoms, but lots of things to take care of, new “job”, my nieces at home, had to change my flight back home (might need to change again) and figure out a bunch of dates/covid-tests and I had not the energy to write anything. But let’s pretend I’m writing this on the 24th, shall we?
Two days ago Today was the beginning of what I hope will be an amazing journey towards something I really want. Can this be considered a dream? Not sure, but it was definitively a goal.
I started working at Automattic about 4.5 years ago as a Happiness Engineer (I love our job titles) which is a technical support role. We work helping WordPress.com, Jetpack and WooCommerce users with their sites. We can answer simple questions, help them with tips and suggestions to improve their site, show them how to use WordPress, WooComerce, Jetpack and other plugins. We also provide code (HTML, CSS) and deal with more complicated stuff like plugin conflicts and database errors. Working as a Happiness Engineer is amazing. I love helping people, I love working with WordPress, I love solving problems. (If you want to read more about being a Happiness Engineer you can do it here).
As a Happiness Engineer (or in any other role at Automattic) we can do rotations that can vary from a few weeks to 1 year on a different role. You can, for example, be a WordPress.com HE and do a rotation on a WooCommerce Support team where you are going to work with WooCommerce customers specifically. Or if you can do a rotation in the hiring team. So, back in May 2020, I started a one-year rotation as a Mobile Happiness Engineer, where we would provide support for users on the WordPress, WooCommerce and Simplenote apps (at that time, today other apps were included).
During the following 12 months, I fell in love with mobile apps and everything behind them it and the dev bug bit me again. I realized I could also help users by working in the apps behind the scenes. That’s when I heard about the Developer Apprenticeship Program through a friend, which is an internal program for Automatticians to become developers and this got me even more excited.
After talking to my team lead and deciding to actually pursue this, I contacted a few other people to help me with the next steps after discussing which platform I would like to focus on first (Android or iOS). So I started taking a few courses on Java, Kotlin and Android Development around November 2020.
2021 was a crazy year. I was working and studying and trying to avoid Covid and missing a bunch of people, but it turned out to be a great year (professionally and personally to a certain extent). Things started to reopen again, I got the vaccines, I was able to see part of the people I missed so much during 2020, I got assigned a mentor from one of our mobile teams to help and guide my next steps towards the Apprenticeship program and that made all the difference.
So I studied a lot, submitted my very first PR , contributed a bunch to the WooCommerce Android App (it was awesome seeing the changes I made to the code reflected in the app to improve the user experience), and by the end of the year I got the big news I was hoping for: I had been accepted into the Developer Apprentice Program.
This program is meant for people who have some knowledge about programming but no work experience. It’s a great opportunity for Automatticians who want to follow this career path, it’s a great opportunity to Automattic who is investing in people who already know and love the company and are used to the company’s culture. It’s a win-win situation and I’m so happy to be part of it.
At the end of the rotation you can either move permanently to a developer position or go back to your previous role, depending on several factors.
So, here I am, hoping this year will be amazing, trying to learn everything I can from the amazing, smart and patient people in my new team, and who knows? Maybe, if things go well, move to a developer position permanently at some point.
And if you are interested, we are hiring! Check out some positions available here.