Gone are the days when Software Development and Computer Programming were an exclusive profession only to those who studied Computer Science Engineering from top-tier universities. With the internet being a flagbearer of some massive possibilities and opportunities, diversification in careers is a very normal phenomenon in the present day.
At Masai School, a Bengaluru-based outcome-driven higher education institute, watching graduates from non-technical backgrounds become software developers is an everyday situation. More often, we have seen more non-tech background candidates becoming developers than those from Computer Science and other Engineering backgrounds in our cohorts.
Here are 5 of those rockstar techies who never planned on becoming techies in their lives:
Mohammed Tanveer, Influx Worldwide
Tanveer was forced to drop out of 5th grade in school when his father’s business crashed. He was compelled to join his uncle’s fabrication workshop as a welder where he earned a paltry Rs 50 per week. The shop had to shut down as it was caught employing child labour. He later joined another fabrication workshop as helper to a welder for Rs 120 a week and quit four years later, skilled as a welder to join another workshop where he made Rs 500 a week. An accident at the workshop proved to be the turning point in his life.
The fire put him out of employment immediately, and Tanveer was also hospitalised and bed-ridden for 6 months. He decided to put all this time to good use. Tanveer’s sister, who was then taking a course on medical transcription, gave him some books to read. Tanveer just wanted to read anything and everything he could get his hands on. Looking at his brother’s efforts, his sister helped him pick up basic skills in reading and writing English. He was also getting better at it by the day.
Once he recovered, Tanveer took up a typing course that helped him land a job as a data-entry executive. While this was only a first step, he moved to several other organizations, working in data entry, and eventually became a specialist in search engine optimization (SEO). He then found employment in Marketing and worked as an SEO Manager and Digital Marketing Manager for a few years. But he admits of always wanting to build a career as a software engineer.
Cut to a few months later, he is now a Software Developer at Influx Worldwide after his Full-Stack Web Development course at Masai School.
“I was initially apprehensive about beginning a career as a coder without an educational degree. This was when I came across Masai School’s 7-month coding program and enrolled myself. The program has today enabled me with the right skills and in turn, kick-started my career as a full-stack developer.”
Sumanta Mallik, Revv.so
Sumanta Kumar Malik finished his B.Sc in Mathematics from Utkal University in Bhubaneswar. Throughout his education, until his 12th grade, Sumanta only learned through Odiya medium of instruction. To meet his personal expenses, Sumanta was working in Customer Support, at a local BPO. It had to come to a point where he had to work at this BPO to support his family as well, while studying in college.
Having lived in his hometown for the most part of his life, Sumanta dreamt of living in the IT Capital of India. The whole narrative around software development being a dream job for many, caught his attention so much that he decided to move to Bengaluru. Sumanta found himself a job where he worked as a data entry operator at a mobile marketplace startup – Cashify, to support his family back at home.
He said, “Once I started my Full-Stack Web course at Masai School, I realized that my previous course on the fundamentals was barely anything, compared to what I was learning at Masai. There was zero hesitation in my mind after I spoke with Prateek, I knew Masai was just what I had been looking for.”
Sumanta is one of the first few engineers at Bengaluru-based Revv.so and went to build about 60 web pages that constitute the startup’s entire websites, all by himself.
Watch Sumanta’s journey from his own perspective in this video.
Shreedhar Bhat, Instamojo
Shreedhar Bhat’s parents come from a farming background. The family has been traditionally into agriculture all their lives. For a longer period of time, Shreedhar wanted to pursue his education in agriculture as well. He did his Bachelor’s in Agricultural Sciences from Karnataka University.
Shreedhar says he was never a bright kid in school, but only wanted to follow his familial footsteps. Also owing to his family’s financial situation, he could only take up BSc with a very vague idea of what to do after graduation.
But what really changed was his influence from friends in college, who were pursuing Computer Science. Shreedhar found himself writing code in his friends’ laptops every now and then. One of his roommates in college hostel was an Android Developer, and Shreedhar wanted to do the same as well. He would watch tutorials and videos on YouTube, around Java and build mobile applications.
“After graduating from college, I tried to pursue a Master’s in Computer Applications (MCA) but my family could not afford it. I already had interest in pursuing a career in Computers but was left clueless. After many job trials and competitive examinations, I realised I needed more skills and experience.”
An article in India Today introduced Shreedhar to Masai School. A year and half later, he is now a software engineer at Bengaluru-based payments startup Instamojo.
Sahil Sachdev, INAI
After passing his Class 10 board exams, Sahil Sachdev was confused about which stream to take in pre-college. He had enough freedom to choose the subject of his choice, and he opted for commerce and mathematics, owing to his inclination to the latter.
A few months later, Sahil’s brother who works as a financial manager in Ireland sent his brother a video that showed how coding and programming is a promising field for the current generation. He also talked about some of his friends who are doing great in their careers as software developers.
“I got so intrigued by the video that I started learning about different languages online while still studying in school. By the time I finished my board exams, I was clear that I had to build myself as a professional in this field.”
He joined B.Com in a private college but never attended any classes. Quickly realising that he is better off in his pursuit to learn coding, Sahil dropped out of college at 19 and joined the Full-Stack Web course at Masai School. The same year, he got placed as a Software Developer at INAI with a competitive compensation package.
Anant Jain, Masai School
After school, Anant Jain did a BBA to get one step closer to his dream of becoming an entrepreneur. While studying, he realised that the curriculum followed in his college wasn’t up to the mark and he didn’t find much scope to learn new things. To utilise his time better, he interned and volunteered at various organisations to understand how businesses work across different sectors.
He was at Teach for India, Zomato and Urban Company which turned out to be life-changing experiences for him. Working from office, he saw the amount of effort tech teams of companies put in to ensure the smooth running of an enterprise and its services. He was amazed by the way technology could build organisations like these and give them an upper hand over other kinds of traditional businesses.
“My internship ended just before the pandemic of Covid-19 hit the world. I realised that almost all the enterprises that did not have any connection to technology were badly affected except the ones that were based on it. This gave me the confidence that no matter what happens, this field will always be in demand and continue to thrive. I finally decided to try my hand at Coding and started learning about it from online sources,” he says.
Within a month, he realised that learning online could get pretty monotonous and confusing. Apart from lack of interaction, he also felt that it would have been better if there was a mentor to guide him. In a hope to learn from the best, he searched for bootcamps that taught Coding to those who came from a non-technical background. It was during this research that he came across Masai School and checked out its website.
At present, Anant is an Instructional Associate at Masai School where he mentors students, clears their doubts and closely helps them with any problems they face along the course. He feels grateful that he is able to apply the knowledge he has gained in a fruitful manner and is able to keep up with the latest trends in the industry- thanks to the ever-evolving curriculum.
In addition to the 5 alumni mentioned above, there are hundreds of similar cases of students coming from non-tech backgrounds and becoming professional software developers at Masai in just 7 months.
But, how does Masai School do it?
Watch this video to understand the process and preparation it takes for such career turnarounds.