From Teacher to Web Developer

“Work had become monotonous.”

Image of Bryn Williams
From Teacher to Web Developer

Bryn Williams knew he needed a change. Though he'd identified a potential new path, it didn't make the worry over his finances or work prospects any easier. Here's how he found the support he needed to weather the transition and see his efforts pay off.

What work were you doing previously?

I worked as an in-company English teacher in various locations around Spain.

What are you doing now?

For the last year, I've been working as a junior web developer for a Catalan ticketing company.

Why did you change?

Working as an English teacher was initially a short-term plan that I took on as a means to combine work and travel.

After having settled in Spain, I explored other options that had better long-term prospects in regards to career development.

When was the moment you decided to make the change?

I'd reached the point where work had become monotonous.

I couldn't see many new opportunities opening up where I was, so I started to look at other options.

After extensive research in the web development field and completing various online courses, I signed up to a web development bootcamp in Barcelona.

Are you happy with the change?

In general, yes.

It hasn't been an easy path at all; however, it has been very rewarding to see my efforts paying off.

What do you miss and what don't you miss?

The best things about teaching for me were the long holidays and finishing my working day earlier than the majority of office jobs.

However, I don't miss the planning and administrative duties that go into teaching.

How did you go about making the shift?

I was teaching in an I.T. company, so when I started to think about a career change, I arranged a few meetings with the directors of the company to see if my goal was realistic and attainable.

After speaking with them, I used my spare time to complete basic online programming courses before signing up to a full-time, six-month web development course at Ubiqum Code Academy.

How did you handle your finances to make your shift possible?

I knew I wouldn't have an income for at least eight months whilst doing the course, so I just had to manage my money carefully and use savings.

What was the most difficult thing about changing?

During the course, the fear of not getting a job after a significant investment of time and money was worrying.

The first six to nine months of working were very difficult, too. The vast majority of junior web developers start their careers in their early 20s; being older, I felt there were greater expectations around my ability to carry out my responsibilities.

Thankfully, I was placed in a very understanding and supportive team that helped me through the initial transition.

What help did you get?

The code academy I signed up for was very supportive throughout the entire course.

Not only was the academic content and methodology exceptional, but also the career placement team was second to none.

What resources would you recommend to others?

If you have an idea for a specific job in mind, I would strongly recommend spending your free time learning the basics of the profession and speaking to anyone in that field.

I think it's very easy to believe the grass is greener, so do your research, spend time acquiring relevant information and then make the change if it still feels right.

What have you learnt in the process?

Despite what I previously thought, a degree isn't always necessary to start a new career.

Hard work, research and realism can be enough.

What do you wish you'd done differently?

Apart from starting sooner, there isn't much that could have been done differently.

What would you advise others to do in the same situation?

If you aren't happy with what you are currently doing, explore other options and make a change.

If things don't work out, you can always return to your previous profession knowing that you gave it a shot whilst you continue to look at other possibilities.

Thank you to Ubiqum, the code academy, for this story. For more information, visit www.ubiqum.com.

What lessons could you take from Bryn's story to use in your own career change? Let us know in the comments below.

Plus, if you know someone who's made a successful shift into work they love, we'd love to hear from you. Drop us a line at hello@careershifters.org. and you could win a £25 / $35 Amazon voucher in our monthly draw.