The Marcy Lab SchoolThe Marcy Lab School

Xhesika Malecaj

She / Her

Apprentice at Cockroach Labs | Fall '22 Alum

What were you doing before you joined The Marcy Lab School as a Software Engineering Fellow?

Before I joined The Marcy Lab School, I was doing a pre-optometry major and working as an optometry technician at a clinic. I stopped majoring in Computer Science because of the way it was taught in college. You had to do so many classes that didn’t involve code at all. They also taught a lot of outdated information. While at work, I kept looking at websites and wondering how software engineers coded them. Although I was following another path, I was always curious about code.

What most made you want to apply for Marcy’s Software Engineering Fellowship?

I saw it as a chance to in a short amount of time transform my life and follow my passion.

What has been one of your favorite parts of the Fellowship?

The relationships I have built. Having like-minded individuals who want the best for you makes you become a better person. While we were stressed about projects and learning JavaScript, we had some of the best laughs. When I didn’t believe in myself, they did and supported me.

What has been most challenging for you as a Fellow?

Pushing myself to be the best version of myself and knowing when I was making excuses. You are capable of anything, and change can be scary, but you need to try.

How have you most grown while part of Marcy’s Fellowship?

I have become a braver person and have been able to change myself as a person, even if it was subtle. I now know that I am capable of anything as long as I try.

How has Marcy prepared you for your future work and career?

Marcy teaches you how to have better communication and also teaches you to practice coding. We learn how to learn instead of learning just how to code. Leadership and development classes help you believe in yourself and become a better version of yourself.

What advice do you have for our incoming Fellows?

My advice to incoming Fellows is to work hard and give it your best. The year goes by fast. If you are behind, try to catch up before it is too much, and always ask for help!

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