Victoria LeBel: Registered Nurse to Software Engineer
Victoria LeBel spent 4 years as a nurse before making the decision to pivot into tech in search of a more creative career path.
Victoria LeBel, a September 2022 Software Engineering graduate from Flatiron School, started her career in nursing until a desire for more creativity put her on a path to tech.
She shares her journey from nursing to tech below.
Unhappy In Healthcare
Victoria began her career as a registered nurse. She spent 4 years working on a high-risk labor and delivery unit but felt that she needed to make a change.
“I was missing an element of creativity in my work,” she explained. “[But] I wanted to continue to use my critical thinking and problem-solving skills.”
Combining her acquired skills and her love of continuous learning, she determined that Software Engineering would be a great fit. To make the transition from healthcare to tech though, Victoria knew that she would need to pursue some additional schooling. It was then that she learned about Flatiron School.
“I was doing my research and learned about Flatiron’s reputation and was happy to find how transparent the school was with their jobs report,” she recalled. “I also met a Flatiron school alumni who highly recommended the program.”
Determined to change career paths, Victoria applied and was accepted to Flatiron School’s full-time Software Engineering program.
Flourishing At Flatiron School
Upon starting the Flatiron School program, Victoria Initially found herself daunted by the sheer amount of information covered each week.
“The most challenging part of the program for me was the first week of each phase,” she said. “With all the new content to learn being sent our way, it was often overwhelming.”
But in time, she built processes to make her way through the workload and developed a growth mindset.
“I learned to understand that many concepts take time and practice to grasp,” she recalled. “I learned to break down the content into smaller parts, set goals, and was able to find a way that worked for me to grasp the concepts.”
Committing to the full-time program meant that Victoria was studying on a full-time schedule: 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Despite, or perhaps because of, the grueling schedule she grew to lean on the cohort of students learning alongside her.
“Beyond technical specifics, my real favorite part of the program was collaborating with my cohort mates,” she said. “Working together through problems, explaining concepts in different ways, and building collaborative projects with the use of GitHub was an invaluable experience.”
Jumping Into The Job Search
Victoria graduated from Flatiron School in September 2022. Her job search, supported by her career coach, she said was an overall positive experience.
“Initially I felt overwhelmed and uncertain about how I would break into tech,” she recalled. “My career coach was very helpful with keeping me motivated and assured me that I was doing the right things.”
Her coach helped in reviewing Victoria’s LinkedIn profile and resume and performing mock interviews.
“Practicing interviewing skills was helpful for me to understand ways to describe my background in a way that highlights valuable skills I would be bringing to a position,” she said. “That is key to successful applications and connections.”
Victoria ultimately accepted a Software Engineer position at Econify. While she had yet to begin working at the time of our interview, she was looking forward to stepping into the next phase of her career.
“I am very excited! I have enjoyed meeting my team and look forward to contributing to projects in the work setting. My position is hybrid and I look forward to the flexibility of working from home and in the office.”
Reflecting On Her Journey
Looking back on where she began, Victoria emphasizes the importance of hard work and self-determination.
“If you set your mind and efforts toward something you can accomplish anything. So long as you have the focus and determination, you can achieve anything, no matter where you started.”
Her advice to other students, however, tempers that full speed ahead work ethic to allow for the reality of entering an entirely new field.
“Allow some patience. Patience with yourself and with the process. Give yourself the time to learn and practice concepts,” she cautions. “And the job search takes time, [but] just keep on going! With a little patience, it will happen!”
Ready For A Change, Just Like Victoria LeBel?
Apply Now to join other career changers like Victoria LeBel in a program that sets you apart from the competition.
Not ready to apply? Try out our Free Software Engineering Prep. Or, review the Software Engineering Course Syllabus that will set you up for success and can help launch you into a new and fulfilling career.
Read more stories about successful career changes on the Flatiron School blog.
Disclaimer: The information in this blog is current as of 13 March 2023. Current policies, offerings, procedures, and programs may differ. For up-to-date information visit FlatironSchool.com.
Posted by Anna Johnson / March 13, 2023
Learn to Code Python: Free Lesson for Beginners
The Art of Debugging
Debugging code is often more of an art than anything. Technical Coach Joe Miius explains how to debug and get your code working correctly.