My 2019 in review: reflections, highs and lows, tech events, volunteering, job hunting, friends and plans for 2020.
I started writing reviews about my year in tech in 2017, (here are the ones I wrote for 2017 and 2018) and I usually go back to read my previous reviews shortly before writing a new one. Documenting my journey as a Software Developer has been important to me, it helps me reflect on my mistakes, acknowledge my achievements, draw out lessons to learn and help make positive projections for the future. But this year, I was quite reluctant to write a review. This was mostly because I felt that I underachieved and didn’t quite do as much I planned. But on reflecting on how the year has gone, I realised it wasn’t as bad as I was making it seem. Also, a chat I had with a senior developer I work with was the motivation I needed to write this review before the year ended. 😊
I set out this year to work towards becoming a full-stack developer and also try my hands-on mobile app development. Coupled with school work, these goals were a bit difficult and time-demanding to be met. One of the things I did wrong this year was that I learnt a lot, maybe a little too much and built very little projects to master things I learnt. Another painful part of my year was missing out on a job that would’ve been my biggest and highest-paid yet, because of unavailability of time and a little bit of imposter syndrome, my biggest loss of the year. 😓
One of the unconscious positive effects that learning a lot had on me this year was that the more I learnt, the easier it became to learn (I hope that makes sense to you, lol). Compared to last year, I squeezed out more time for coding, built more projects this year and pushed more to my GitHub. In my 2018 review, I said I was going to learn more about Digital Marketing, well, this year I finished The Fundamentals of Digital Marketing course from Google and got certified.
Also, I officially started working as a freelance developer this year. Things didn’t really go as planned with the digital agency I joined late last year. So, I found myself doing more freelance jobs this year, mostly frontend development and Wordpress jobs.
Tech Events and Volunteering
Like every other year, I registered to attend several tech meetups this year, but I finally attended one this year, and my first too. It was Google DevFest Ilorin, quite an enjoyable program. I’m not that much of a social person, but I hope to attend more meetups next year.
One of the highlights of my year was volunteering to partake in a tech outreach program organised by some of my friends in school. A community development initiative called TechReach, aimed at bridging the gap of technological divide by taking tech education to rural areas in Ilorin, Kwara State and also to government schools. We had the first tech outreach in July. We spent four days at The Agunbiade Fulani Settlement in Ilorin South LGA, Kwara State. It was a fulfilling and rewarding experience. There’s a second outreach already in the works for early next year, we’ll be going to four secondary schools. I’m really excited about this.
I also volunteered to teach the basics of website development to students in a program organised by my department at school. Helping newbies to kick start their coding careers has been an honour.
Job Hunting and Rejections
Freelancing can get pretty frustrating and tiring at times and you kind of want a stable job, so I decided and finally gathered the courage to start applying for jobs. I polished my LinkedIn profile, set up a makeshift portfolio website and started applying for internships and remote jobs. I sent out several applications, then the rejection emails started coming in in droves. I didn’t even realise I had sent out so many applications. A week hardly goes by without at least one rejection email. I have been in no way deterred tho, lol, applications continue next year!
Apart from my supportive family, I’ve had amazing friends who in one way or the other have motivated, supported, and helped me get better this year. Adeosun Anuoluwapo , Nihmatallah Hammed, Oghenevwede Emeni, Solomon Aboyeji , Olasunkanmi Ajibola , Olushola Oluyomi, Olalere Taiwo, Fortress Enebe. Thank you guys, here’s to more progress next year. ❤
After reflecting on my year, there’s nothing to be downhearted about really, I made mistakes, I lost out on some opportunities because of fear, all totally normal and human. Next year, however, I will as much as possible try to right the wrongs of my 2019.
- First of them, is to build more as opposed to learning more. And since I’ll be doing a school-compulsory 6-month internship next year, I’ll have more time to write codes (finally!). I want to populate my GitHub with lots of meaningful projects too.
- I’ll also keep applying for jobs regardless of the number of rejection emails I get in return.
- Getting involved in open source is one of the things I plan to do next year, I want to participate in Google Summer of Code, HacktoberFest and hackathons too.
- I’ll also try to attend more tech events next year or even speak at one.
- I also want to do more volunteer work, teach more and write more technical articles next year.
So help me God.
2019 hasn’t been the best, I felt my progress was still slow, but regardless, it was a good year. I definitely ended the year with more knowledge, skills and experience than I started the year with. Next year is another opportunity to hone my skills, improve my skill set, surpass my past achievements and progress even further at being a world-class developer. 2020 bring it on! 🚀
Earlier, I mentioned going for an internship next year, I’m currently searching for openings and open to recommendations. I’m a budding Software Developer who is an undergraduate of Information and Communication Science and minors in Telecommunication Science. The fields in which I’m looking for opportunities in order of preference are Software Development, Network Engineering and Digital Marketing. My contact and portfolio details are below, thank you.