“Until 2012, I knew almost nothing about coding. Today I am a senior software engineer with close to a decade long experience in web development and building digital products. My clientele is spread across several parts of the world.
When people ask me, “How can I become a Software engineer coming from a nontraditional background?” Well, you can’t get more nontraditional than me. I’m a college dropout! I stopped going to college after class 10. However, I self learnt everything, the concepts of hacking, code, machine learning, through the internet and since then I have never looked back. My routine was to dedicately learn concepts which interested me.
Having started my digital journey at the age of 12 in school, I upskilled my knowledge in coding, data science, machine learning and product development. My entire journey has been about learning and gaining knowledge in multiple streams in the digital regime. But it’s definitely not easy to be a self taught coder. You’ll get discouraged, you’ll struggle, and you need to be consistent in learning the concepts. But if you persist though, it’ll pay off!
I knew I would become a software engineer one day but I also knew it might be the hardest thing I ever did. But I resolved to see it through.
It was not easy for me, especially coming from a typical Indian family setting, but I trusted the process and gained my family members trust by constantly upskilling myself and solving the problems of my clientele in the digital space.
Apart from being a software engineer, I am also a sound engineer by passion, having worked with a few films and music albums early on in my career. I am also actively involved in the social welfare activities contributing my bit to the welfare of the needy. It all started during the Covid as I was a member of the community service group named Combat Covid. We have been actively involved in serving the people in distributing home cooked food during the first and second lockdowns.
With the motive to serve the general public in serving food, I rented a closed kitchen and hired a cook who helped us. We have served close to 1,500 people with the help of a group of volunteers. It was entirely personal interest and I still contribute to people in whatever ways I can along with my mother. In future, I am in plans of starting a foundation where we could serve meals to the needy on a regular basis.
If I have to reflect on my professional career so far, I would say exploration is always a key to learning anything and there’s no end to it, till the extent of our interest goes. I would suggest to keep an eye on your actual goals, what you really want, not what you guess might get you there. You might not even know how to reach your goals, but in this day and age, lack of guidance should not be an excuse. With the internet at your disposal and your mind set on a goal, you can aim straight at the bull’s-eye!”
– Featuring Mr. Hruday Charan Appani, Software Engineer & Social worker