Meet Chase M.
Mindteck Academy Java Trainee
This is the first edition of a multi-issue Blog introducing and celebrating the successes of Mindteck Academy's current Java "Bootcamp" Trainees in Madison, Wisconsin.
Trekking all the way from Apple Valley, California (where the temperatures in February remain comfortably in the 70s) to the arctic town of Madison, Wisconsin (which is ranked as the Top 100 Best Place to Live in 2015 by Livability!), Chase M. is welcoming the steep climate change, as it is all part of his plan to elevate his career as a Java developer with Mindteck.
The trip, which took three days, allowed Chase to go through seven new states and see a side of America he never really knew - “I got the chance to see just how large and vast the farming industry is in the Midwest.” When asked how he is adjusting to life in Madison, Chase beamed, “Other than the cold, it has been amazing. The people are courteous, the town is clean, and the sites are beautiful. I’ve never seen frozen lakes before. There are quaint places to eat and drink on every corner, which is nothing like my home in California where there is a McDonalds every few blocks” (insert chuckle). “I’ve eaten at a new restaurant every day!” When asked if he’s met any new people outside of class, he said he really hasn’t found the time. “I get to training about 90 minutes prior to the start of class and get work done. I spend eight hours at training and then go home and code for a few more hours every night. I eat, live and breathe Java right now. I’m putting everything I’ve got into these two months of training.” Upon further discussion, Chase did reveal that he and his classmates have found some time for some fun – whether it’s playing darts at a local pub after class or eating lunch together – they have all really bonded.
As a youngster, Chase wanted to be an Astronaut. His grandfather was actually a part of North American Rockwell and was on the Saturn V missile project that put man on the moon! Asked if given a chance to fly into outer space now, Chase said he would go in a heartbeat. Here on earth, however, his passion is now for programming. He always knew he liked technology and computers, but I wasn’t sure exactly what he wanted to do. In college, he chose a general technology major and after a requisite programming class, he never looked back. “The first time I wrote a program and the computer did exactly what I wanted it to do, I was hooked! Everything clicked and it felt completely innate.” As a long-term goal, Chase would love the opportunity to work in the sphere of Artificial Intelligence.
When asked what attracted him to Mindteck Academy, Chase quickly replied “This was an opportunity of a lifetime. As someone who ‘only’ has an associate degree and has opted not to unduly burden myself with student loan debt, it has been hard to get my foot in the door anywhere – or even to get my resume evaluated. I have been perpetually stuck in the philosophical ‘chicken-or-the-egg’ situation and this was the chance I needed to break that cycle.” Chase went on to describe his experience with Mindteck Academy as ‘phenomenal’. “The Java training is completely preparing me to work as a software developer at the enterprise level. The instructor is amazing; he is unwaveringly focused on teaching us the skills we need to be successful. It has been the perfect bridge for me.”
What is Chase’s advice to a young person trying to prepare to be a software developer? “Just keep doing it. As much as you can. It can feel overwhelming at times, but just keep doing it. Just like we forget how to solve math problems if we don’t keep doing it, the same can happen with programming.” His mantra? Practice makes perfect.
Chase has an Associate of Science degree in Computer Information Systems from Victor Valley College, where he graduated with a 3.9 GPA, Academic Distinction, Dean’s Honors and was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. He is an avid soccer player and coach, known for his leadership skills as a center midfielder both on his high school varsity team and college intramural squad. He also enjoys playing football, drums and video games.