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More freedom and a healthier work/life balance through coding

Sara studied Geomatics at Carleton University (Canada) and used to work as an analyst in both the private and public sector. She realized it wasn't what she really wanted as a career. She decided to learn how to code with Le Wagon, and she is now an Ottawa-based Freelance Web Developer.

Featuring graduate Sara Mannseichner Freelance Developer More about Sara
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Sara works both independently and with various agencies building custom web products, including development, design, SEO and project management. 

Coming from a career in the government, what drew you to coding?

I was exposed to coding through one of my jobs as a Research Assistant during my undergrad at Carleton University. I worked for a professor who was researching App Development for Geographic Information Systems. I always thought it was so cool that you could basically build any tool you wanted/needed, and that always really stuck with me. I had a few friends who also worked in the tech industry at the time, and they all seemed so happy and motivated by what they were doing. 

“There’s such an image of freedom and growth in the tech industry so it seemed like a natural step for me.”

How did you make the transition? 

It was a hard decision to make. I think any career change is a difficult decision. This one was especially hard because I knew it would be a lot of work, practice, and dedication, even after the 9 weeks were finished. But I really wanted a job with more freedom and more opportunities to learn and grow, and it gave me the motivation to take this huge step. A coding bootcamp seemed like the perfect way to make that change and to make it quickly.

Why did you choose Le Wagon Montréal?

There were no bootcamps in Ottawa at the time so I knew I would have to move. Montreal was the closest city that offered them so I started reaching out to the different bootcamps there. After interviewing with each of the main ones, I chose Le Wagon because of my conversation/interview with M-G (Cofounder & driver of Le Wagon Montreal). She was such a sweet person and really made me feel comfortable during a major transition in my life. 

How was your experience of the bootcamp?

My experience was amazing! I made incredible friends and learned more than I could have ever imagined in 9 weeks.

It’s a totally different teaching and learning method when compared to my years at university. It’s super hands-on where you’re learning tangible skills and consistently practicing it, whereas university was much more theoretical. 

“Le Wagon taught me how to learn something very quickly, to ask the right questions and to persevere.”

What do you like about your new freelance lifestyle?

I really enjoy working remotely. It provides flexibility in my day to get things done outside of work and not according to someone else’s schedule. It's enabled me to have a really healthy work/life balance.


Sara is also very keen on sharing her bootcamp experience and how she changed careers. She will be the guest of a Brown Bag Lunch, hosted by Impact Hub Ottawa next July 11. Keep an eye on their website to know more.

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