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From communications manager to learning to code part-time while on Kurzarbeit

"Thanks to the part-time format I can choose the things to focus on and learn effectively because of the flexible hours. My advice to anyone thinking about joining the bootcamp during the pandemic is as simple as it is: follow your dreams, every time is the right time to change your life for the better."

From communications manager to learning to code part-time while on Kurzarbeit
Featuring graduate Lena Blank More about Lena
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I believe that everybody should follow their dreams. My biggest one successfully brought me from Moscow to my historical homeland Germany two years ago. Before moving, I was working as an internal communications manager in one of the largest russian IT companies and after settling down in my old-new home landed in a Berlin IT-recruiting startup.

I was working in the IT-world for the last couple of years and its vibrant community, technologies, meetups and tons of new things to learn was always a kind of magic around me. I could only dream about becoming a developer myself.

But shouldn't everybody follow their dreams?

It would probably take me longer, but suddenly came the pandemic and the first lockdown, then Kurzarbeit and as a result of the new reality a lot of “free time” in my own four walls. 

One day I realized that it’s probably the best time to give it a try. To try is better than not to, right?

Skipping all the possible self-dialogs, weird thoughts and doubts I found my first tutorial and you know, that was THE feeling. I remember typing my first “Hello, world!” thinking, damn, it feels like I’ve just found my next big dream.

“ I did enormously big research and all roads led me to Le Wagon: great reviews from students, a huge international and diverse community, Bildungsgutschein options for those who are on Kurzarbeit and 6 months part-time web development course. At my starting point, the last two criterias were super important. It was a perfect match.”


Next important step was to find a place to actually learn how to code, a place that will not take away my next 4 years and at the same time will give me solid knowledge to start a new career. I did enormously big research and all roads led me to Le Wagon: great reviews from students, a huge international and diverse community, Bildungsgutschein options for those who are on Kurzarbeit and 6 months part-time web development course. At my starting point, the last two criteria were super important. It was a perfect match.

After all the preparations were done, it seemed like a turning point and it turned out to be.

Meanwhile I am on the finish line, doing the final project with my team. There are only 3 weeks left and my Batch is getting ready for our Demo Day, which will be followed by new opportunities and challenges. 

Looking back to where it all began I can only say wow, we all have learned so much.
Elena following our part-time web development bootcamp on our Berlin campus.

My favourite part of the bootcamp was building my own application to store cocktails recipes. There was so much fun! Just think about it — from absolutely nothing to building web apps from scratch!

But it wouldn't be a bootcamp if it was only about fun. Among other amazing feelings on the way there was also a lot of struggling, especially at the very beginning. Learning new things is never easy and learning how to code is not an exception. 

What really helps a lot is that there’s the whole Le Wagon Team on your side, doing their best to help you to grow. That is what makes a difference at the end and I am so grateful that I’ve met so many professional and enthusiastic people there.

“Thanks to our awesome teachers, teacher assistants and the team it was even not a big issue to go completely remote at the middle of the course because of the second lockdown. Now I know how to use all the tools to collaborate, communicate effectively, work on projects and get things done remotely. Quite a useful additional skill nowadays.“


Thanks to our awesome teachers, teacher assistants and the team it was even not a big issue to go completely remote at the middle of the course because of the second lockdown. Now I know how to use all the tools to collaborate, communicate (key word “effectively”), work on projects and get things done remotely. Quite a useful additional skill nowadays.

With the skillset that I have now I feel way more confident and excited about my future and the beginning of a never ending learning process. 

Starting and finishing the course during the pandemic is definitely an experience to remember, but honestly, I would say that I could not find a better time to develop myself and to learn. Thanks to the part-time format I can choose the things to focus on and learn effectively because of the flexible hours.

I keep on learning: I want to work as a web developer after a Bootcamp, gain experience and help others discover this incredible world of tech. Doing something that you really like feels so right and rewarding after all.

My advice to anyone thinking about joining the bootcamp during the pandemic is as simple as it is: follow your dreams, every time is the right time to change your life for the better.


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