“Microverse gives you an edge. A real edge. And you can see that. You get so many tools and then you don't realize how many tools you acquire in the program. But then they come in really handy and I see people making big progress after Microverse.” - Carlos Rafael Anriquez
Microverse students work incredibly hard to become professional web developers. From making sacrifices to be able to support themselves throughout the program, to spending thousands of hours learning, they’re committed to improving their lives. Our alum have landed jobs around the world, earning more than what they made before — without paying Microverse anything until they’re employed.
Today we highlight another alum, 40-year-old Carlos Rafael Anriquez, who made the life-changing decision to shift careers and become a web developer. After 17 years working as an Electronics Engineer, Carlos decided to pursue his passion for software development and embarked on a journey that led him to Microverse. We asked Carlos about his experiences and how he was able to successfully transition into a new career at a later stage in life.
After graduating as an Electronics Engineer, Carlos landed a job in the telecoms industry. He worked his way up from an intern, to becoming part of the corporate team. His job soon took him overseas, to the UK and Germany for 8 years, managing a team abroad before he ultimately decided to step back from the company and move home to Argentina for his family.
When he returned, he decided to take a course on Python. Working in managerial positions took Carlos away from the technological aspect of his work. So he decided to learn and help in his close-knit community in Salta, Argentina through using his coding knowledge. A friend of his asked him to work on a project building a web page and he accepted. He began to learn more about building web pages and took on more projects.
While having lunch one day, he saw a report on software development jobs stating that someone who had two years of experience working as a full stack developer was earning the same salary that he had after 16 years in the telecoms industry. Since he was already working on basic web development and enjoyed it, Carlos wanted to dive more into it.
Carlos was continuing to learn through online courses, when he saw an ad for Microverse. After researching it further, and discussing it with his family, he shared it with an old colleague.
“I shared Microverse with [my colleague] and he came back and said, ‘This is the real deal. Go for it. You have to go for it. Trust me.’”
So Carlos applied, and was accepted. He started Microverse in November 2019..
It's never too late to learn new skills. When Carlos first began his Microverse journey, he was 45 years old and changing careers after 17 years. Thanks to his HTML background, the journey was initially smooth but he soon faced challenges when he got to Ruby on Rails.
Carlos even faced imposter syndrome because of others' progress vs his own pace. At 45, he said it’s impossible not to compare yourself to others. But Carlos learned to ignore those voices that give him doubt. He also reminded his younger stand up team members and coding partners that the best asset they have is time.
When asked what the hardest part of the Microverse program was, Carlos replied that it was the Capstone projects. Those made him lose sleep due to the time constraints. Despite the challenges, he said,
"You just need to keep pushing. Keep pushing. Just go back to it. Maybe find another source of information and go back to it. Try to find another angle to understand the concepts. But once you do, it's magic."
"You can learn anything you want, and you just need to follow a process and get the materials.” That’s what Carlos said the most important thing he learned from Microverse is. He also noted, “And I realized how much I enjoy it, just to be here, keep learning and learn new technology. It's like I'm back to my first love… So, I would say that that possibility is the mechanism, that process is the thing that I think Microverse has provided me and I recognize as the most valuable one.”
In this day and age, when knowledge is at the tip of our fingertips, anything is possible. However, Carlos noted that it’s difficult to know where to start and what the process is. With Microverse, everything is laid out for you.
"To have a mechanism to learn anything you want to learn, Microverse presents us with a curriculum that you trust based on how you study the market and the best chances we have to get a job."
Before Microverse, Carlos didn't have experience in coding or software development. His previous experiences were in engineering so he had a lot to learn technically before interviewing. That said, he had developed his soft skills over the past 17 years of his career, which would come in handy when interviewing.
Carlos followed the Microverse curriculum to better prepare for interviews and landing a job, as well as to brush up on his online presence and soft skills. "Microverse gives you the chance to create your brand. So, make the most out of that."
After applying for jobs for about three weeks, Carlos received an interesting offer to work for a company where a fellow Microverse alum worked. The company asked him to do a take home project for a Senior Full Stack Developer to test his skills. Carlos shared, "They gave me 24 hours to take APIs from the company and to build anything I want with those APIs, and to actually come up with something new that they don't have in their current solution.”
It took him 22 hours but it wasn't enough to complete the project. Carlos wanted to be transparent, so he let the company know that it wasn’t enough time to complete the project. He was surprised when the company replied saying they too realized 22 hours wasn't enough for the project and gave him an additional 20 hours to work on it.
"That was unusual for me because none of the other companies that I was applying for at that time were doing stuff like that," he said in disbelief.
Throughout the screening process, there were a lot of things to be clarified. There were many processes to be done and deadlines to meet. Carlos was honest in communicating with the hiring manager about the time needed and in giving explanations for his code. "You need to give honest answers - that keeps you in the process and that is what worked for me."
Carlos eventually progressed through the application process and was offered a remote job at that company, working alongside one of his Microverse colleagues. He is delighted to be working with another Microverse alum, and learning on the job.
With Microverse, Carlos has rediscovered his love for electronics and technology.
"I love technology but since I moved to management positions, I somehow lost touch with that. And if you love technology, you should not allow for that to happen. I think that it's important for you to be all the time up to date.”
From all his gathered experience at Microverse, Carlos focused on the process. Trust the process, he insisted. Even with the setbacks, you need to get going and let things happen.
"Share as much as you can with your stand up team, because they are there for you. They are going through the same with you."
He added, “Microverse has mechanisms that help you keep on going.”
Another thing he added is to seek out feedback on your code. He suggested thinking of it as an opportunity to learn more.
‘Just go for it and just continue if you are in the middle. Trust the process and you will do just fine.’
Through a lot of hard work, focus and dedication, Carlos completed Microverse and landed a job as a remote software developer. To date, Microverse has enrolled full-time students from 100+ countries in its full-time online program, and helped students from around the world land life-changing jobs. If you’re ready to change your life by becoming a remote software developer, get started below!