A few months before the class started, I had made the decision to change careers and devote myself full time to studying computer programming. I read that Harvard’s CS50 class was available free online and that, according to many, it was the best place to start. I had started the class on my own on Edx, muddling through the assignments as best I could. When I found out that LaunchCode and URI would be hosting a free in-person session of the class, I knew that getting the chance to talk about these foundational concepts with other learners would be an invaluable experience and couldn’t wait to sign up.
How has the reality of the class differed from your expectations?
The energy of the TAs, mentors, instructors, and other students have completely blown away my expectations. I look forward to class every single time we meet, and whenever I can, I attend study sessions outside of class. I’ve also made some incredible friendships because of this class; I think C really brings people together. My expectations for the effort required to succeed in this class were likely realistic due to the work I had done in the online class.
The spirit of camaraderie in the class is nearly palpable when you walk in the room. Our instructors and TAs are so passionate about the subject that we often continue conversations long after class has ended.
What has been the highlight of class so far?
There are so many, I don’t know if I have room for them all: I’ve made a best friend for life in this class; I’ve spent more focused hours studying than I ever imagined myself capable of; and, the TAs have always come through for me when I’m stuck all while allowing me to arrive at the solution myself. The spirit of camaraderie in the class is nearly palpable when you walk in the room. Our instructors and TAs are so passionate about the subject that we often continue conversations long after class has ended. They are all so committed to helping all of us thrive and are always working to create a learning environment that keeps each and every one of us engaged and excited. I could go on and on!
What have you learned about yourself by taking CS50x?
I have learned that I really enjoy being challenged. Working through this class has been like one big logic problem, and sitting down with study partners and friends to work through the PSETs has been a very enjoyable experience. I really enjoy being back in a learning environment, and look forward to learning more through an internship or apprenticeship.
What would be your advice to someone interested in signing up for LaunchCode’s next class cohort?
I’m going to borrow a line from Shia Leboeuf and say, “JUST DO IT! DON’T LET YOUR DREAMS BE DREAMS!” If you are at all curious about this field or are even just interested in expanding your mind and learning to think in a new way, DO IT.