Sameera: Jr Data Engineering
Sameera, Mother of Three, Rejoins the Workforce and Gets Technological
After 10 years in Financial Services, Sameera left her role in Operations and made the brave move to pursue a future in Technology — armed with nothing but a passion for learning, three kids, and a background in Engineering and Business.
It was after having her third child that she had decided to take a career break. Before she knew it, six years had passed by — yet, it was during that much-needed hiatus that Sameera noticed some ads for the Generation Singapore course. As someone who is constantly looking for new ways to improve herself, Sameera figured that this would be the perfect time for her to upskill and get back into the workforce.
“You know that feeling you get when you’ve taken a break for a while? It isn’t easy to get back into the workforce. In fact, I wasn’t sure whether I was ever going to start working again. I thought to myself that I’d just do the course. But after I went through the bootcamp and all the different coaching programs, Generation has definitely helped boost my confidence.”
Applying to Generation Singapore in the Nick of Time
“I had heard all these nice things about data, which was new to me — and I thought, okay, this will be good.”
So Sameera applied for various related courses. However, as fate would have it, she chanced upon the Generation Singapore course on the very last day of application — and got a reply the very next day!
“I Actually Enjoyed Bootcamp A Lot!”
“During the first few weeks, we had face-to-face classroom sessions. It felt really nice, going back to school, learning new things, and making new friends. It wasn’t really easy, there were projects and a lot of hard work, but we had the support of our trainer who was very helpful.
I initially had doubts about how relevant everything we were learning was going to be — but after going through the internship, and now that I’m working in the field, I really feel that it has all helped!”
Bootcamp: I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends
“Most of us come from non-tech backgrounds. So learning something new like this wasn’t easy for us . However, the specialty of Generation Singapore is that you are never left alone. The rest of the team was always there to hold our hand and we never ever felt judged. From the moment we joined, the learn-associates, our trainers, as well as the assigned mentors from different companies were always there to support.
We were also provided with career guidance sessions to help us with resume writing, LinkedIn profile updates, and interview skills. Together, all these things helped build a kind of confidence in us within those three months.
In other courses, you might have felt like there was someone doing better than you and you’re not well enough — but here, in Generation Singapore, it’s as if everyone knows who you are and where you’re coming from. You’re not only never judged, but given the support you need.”
Mentorship: Preparations For The Real World
“My mentor, Mr. Harry Alam Raju, was the data head from the Bank of America. He was really helpful and would take the initiative to ask for our details and set up regular sessions with us. He went through our resume, corrected it, and even carried out mock interviews with us. He would give us real questions to solve with a proper deadline and, while it was informal, it gave us a sense of how it could be in the real world. He was always available to reach when we had doubts and questions. Till today, I’m still in touch with him!”
Apprenticeship: Started From The Bottom Now We Here
From the four companies that Sameera applied to, she got offers from two of them. She chose a company specialising in technological solutions and started out her first month in self-paced training courses. Immediately after, she was assigned to her very first banking client whom she has been working with ever since.
“During the bootcamp, we learnt how to communicate properly to ask for help. And that became useful during my apprenticeship. I’ve heard others talk about how intense bootcamp can get — however, I felt that the apprenticeship was the intense one. You will just have to be brave enough to figure it out or speak up and ask for help.
It wasn’t easy. My apprenticeship started in January 2022 and by early March I was asked to present to the department heads and tech leads what I had done thus far. However, after the presentation, they offered me a full-time role.”
What Does It Take To Score A Full-Time Role?
“You have to show that you really want to learn and grow. I remember on my very first day with a client, I was asked what I would like to do and what I was expecting from them. I knew what I could offer them based on my experiences, but I also mentioned that I was new in the field and would really like to learn something new. I believe that passion and sincerity goes a long way.”
How Do You Think The Program Prepared You For Your Current Role?
“Most of the things that we learned in the bootcamp turned out to be what we’re now using in the real world. I also appreciated the other confidence boosters such as the mentorships, the career coaching, and the resume reviews which prepared me for interview rounds.
One of my personal highlights of the Generation Singapore course was the opportunity for internships. I have friends who have done other similar programs but were never provided with the opportunity for internships. Thus, after finishing the course, it wasn’t easy for them to find jobs.
For us, on the other hand, we were 100% supported by Generation Singapore — that made job searches less stressful because we were assured that we would be placed somewhere. This made it easy to break into the tech industry.”
When Things Look Grey, Hold On
“First of all, I’m really thankful to Generation Singapore for this opportunity! I enjoyed the natural progression that made it easy for me to follow along, thankfully.
I learnt that you should never be worried about what others think of you because those same people might actually be wondering what you think of them too! So, don’t hold back and try your best. If it works out, that’s great. And even if it doesn’t, just keep trying. Be ready to take up a challenge and you’ll be alright.
If I ever get the chance to do some kind of volunteering with Generation Singapore, I would be interested because it is really personally fulfilling to help other people!”