A computer software engineer expended 8 hrs everyday making use of to entry-degree coding positions for 6 months. She was turned down 357 instances right before receiving an present.

A girl codes in Python (not Sophia Cheong). 5432action/Getty Visuals

  • Just after operating in the restaurant industry for six a long time, Sophia Cheong made the decision to understand how to code.

  • She utilized to entry-amount software engineering employment from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for 6 months straight.

  • 357 rejections, 40 interviews, and 2 provides later, she’s making a lot more than double her outdated salary.

Sophia Cheong’s career started at a Korean barbecue cafe in California, wherever she labored as a host whilst finishing her bachelor’s degree in business enterprise administration.

Immediately after graduating from Fullerton School, she was promoted to assistant normal supervisor and, later, the director of operations. Then a coworker started out teaching her how to code.

“I fell in love,” Cheong told Insider. “I know it is cliche, but I felt like it was my accurate enthusiasm. … I was finding up each morning seriously fired up to discover.”

Like the tens of millions of People in america who stop their careers throughout the “Great Resignation,” Cheong had an chance for the duration of the pandemic to exit the cafe market and change job paths, something she had been seeking to do for some time. With restaurant closures forcing layoffs, she volunteered to be between individuals allow go.

Cheong quickly employed the funds she had saved from cafe paychecks to enroll in a 13-week software program-engineering boot camp known as Hack Reactor, exactly where she done over 1,000 hrs of entire-stack coding.

Just one 7 days right after graduation, she established out on the job hunt.

Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Cheong used to each entry-level software package-engineering work or internship she could find, spanning 18 countries, she stated. On prime of distributing purposes, she arrived at out to tech recruiters every single day and made an online portfolio.

“I was really naive. I assumed I might have a occupation just after a thirty day period because Hack Reactor has these kinds of a superior standing,” she said. “But then a single thirty day period turned to two months and then three and 4, and I began wondering, ‘Oh my God, why am I not having a task? What’s incorrect with me?'”

A screenshot of Sophia Cheong's applications around the world.

A screenshot of Sophia Cheong’s 359 programs about the environment. Courtesy of Sophia Cheong

Continually listening to about the national labor lack and the at any time-growing demand from customers for tech talent didn’t assistance her morale. According to US labor statistics, the scarcity of engineers in the US will exceed 1.2 million by 2026.

Six months later on, Cheong experienced interviewed with 40 companies and been rejected 357 times by firms massive and compact. She instructed Insider that most interviewers asked why she experienced switched occupations and how her expertise in the support business would assistance her triumph in tech.

“Every single time I would check with them why they failed to go on with me, they’d say, ‘The other prospect is much more senior than you,'” Cheong reported, including that recruiters would suggest reaching out in a 12 months following she had additional practical experience.

The exact week Cheong was intended to head back to working at the restaurant, she obtained two work delivers. 1, a junior program-engineer situation at Homee, would shell out 120% more than her former income, she reported.

“We’re all about taking chances with the newcomers,” Cheong stated the firm’s Main Engineering Officer Mitch Pirtle explained to her in the course of the interviewing course of action. “We know how challenging it is to get your foot in that doorway.”

As she accepted her new situation, Cheong posted about the demanding task hunt on LinkedIn. Hundreds of occupation applicants struggling to come across get the job done flooded the comment segment, asking for advice and sharing very similar tales of regular rejections.

“I know there are shortages just about in all places,” Cheong advised Insider. “But I also feel like there are so quite a few people on the lookout for positions at the similar time. I just really don’t know why it has not balanced out still.”

Study the primary write-up on Business enterprise Insider