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Xyrelle started her career as a provincial Correctional Officer for the Government of Saskatchewan, where she gained valuable skills in collaboration, adaptability, and assertiveness. Feeling stagnant in her role and seeking professional growth, she enrolled in Lighthouse Labs’ Immersive Web Development Bootcamp, where she encountered challenges but persisted with determination. The Bootcamp transformed her career trajectory, leading to a role as a Jr. Software Developer, and allowed her to explore new interests in a remote work environment. She looks forward to furthering her tech career, embracing new challenges, and contributing to the field as a mentor to aspiring developers.

What were you up to before Lighthouse Labs?

Before attending Lighthouse Labs, I worked as a Correctional Officer for the Government of Saskatchewan. In this role, the teams were dynamic but because I was always working with different colleagues, there wasn’t much opportunity to build rapport. Many of the day-to-day tasks were mundane, and I was ready for a challenge. There were a lot of transferable skills that I learned from this role that I still carry with me. Things like collaboration, working in a team, adapting to various social situations, not being afraid to be assertive, and being comfortable in uncomfortable situations. These skills have helped me immensely during networking events and have facilitated my ability to connect with people from all walks of life.

What led you to want to take a tech Program, and why did you choose Lighthouse Labs?

I needed a career change because I realized that my job at the time was not benefiting me when it came to my mental health. My previous job became monotonous, and I couldn't see any personal growth on the horizon if I stayed. I wanted to find a career where I would constantly have to learn new skills that would not only help me grow personally but also professionally.

Tell us about your experience with the Web Development Bootcamp.

During the Program, I struggled a lot with the course material. I did the 12-week Web Development Immersive Bootcamp. It was so difficult for me to grasp the concepts right away. Every step of the way, it seemed that I was not cut out for this field because I hadn’t started earlier. It felt like I was always just barely keeping my head above water when it came to doing my coursework. I never gave up, though. It simply was not an option for me because it would prove that I couldn't leave the career that, although I knew so well, I had outgrown.

I found the support of our Student Success Coordinator to help a lot. She was kind, understanding, and always willing to listen. I found friends throughout the Program and even got to meet my cohort in person.

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How did the Web Development Bootcamp impact your career?

The Program completely opened up a new career pathway for me. Although my job title is Software Developer, we are a small team, so I also do a little project management and testing end-to-end with the application we're building. My exposure has increased along with my skillset. Plus, working remotely has provided me with the time to pursue hobbies and passion projects outside of work.

Talk to us about your new job! Explain a little of what you do now.

I am currently a Jr. Software Developer for VisionBox, an AI/software company based in Vancouver. In my role, I am working on a project for a skin analysis app. I am doing the backend development and learning a lot about deploying applications (AWS). I am working alongside a Senior Developer who has been a great mentor, learning even more about programming and how to collaborate with different teams on scalable applications. I like that I’m constantly learning new things because the field is vast, and there is always something new to discover.

What do you appreciate most about your new career or what are you most hopeful for moving forward?

I appreciate my freedom in working remotely and working with great people who are willing to help me navigate the field and guide me through my first year in the role. I am hopeful that, moving forward, I can continue my journey in tech. I like working in a smaller team. It’s been beneficial for me at this point in my career because I can really get hands-on training and see a project from start to finish, from deployment to production, and interact with the other teams involved to understand their role in the project. I think this experience will make me a well-rounded Developer.

What’s next? Tell us about you and your future career goals.

In the foreseeable future, I see myself still working for my current company or maybe another start-up company. I want to eventually be in a position in my own career where I can mentor a junior. I know what it feels like to become a new Software Developer, so I’d like to pay it forward, helping Junior Developers learn and feel comfortable in the space. What advice would you give someone who wants to transition into a tech career? It's scary, and your mind will try to convince you to quit every step of the way. Keep going anyway because it is worth it.

Sign up for the Web Development Bootcamp today.

Ready to find a career in web development like Xyrelle?

At Lighthouse Labs, we're here to help you gain the skills for your next role. Our Web Development Program is the quickest way to launch a career in web development. We offer an online 12-week, full-time, or 30-week, part-time Bootcamp option. The Program includes on-demand mentorship and lifetime Career Services. At the end of the Bootcamp, you'll have the tools and skills needed to level up your resume and find a career in web development.

Read other Web Development graduates' stories

Learn about Madiha’s journey from small business support to front-end engineer.

Discover how Ekaterina transformed her career from piano teacher to full-stack web developer.

This and other success stories were supported by the ICT Boost initiative, funded by the Government of Canada's Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program (SWSP).