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Career Navigation Plan: Jason Zheng

Experience Level: Just Graduated College

Career Path: Developer / Technical

Goal: New Opportunity

Persona: Hustler



I graduated from The Ohio State University with a BS in Chemical Engineering Spring of 2019. Now I am working as a Systems Engineer at Cerner Corporation where my responsibilities include those of Devops Engineer and System Admin. In the past year, aside from working at Cerner, I have completed an online Coding Bootcamp, completed several personal projects, competed in a hackathon and spent several hours on sites like Udemy, Coursera, ant etc to learn more about Software Development. I am now strengthening my knowledge about Data Structures and Algorithms to prepare for technical coding interviews.



I want to find a Software Engineer job within the next 3-6 months. As a self taught developer, I struggle with the idea of "do I know enough compared to the people I'm competing with who have degrees in Computer Science".

Jason, kudos to all the great work you have done, so far as you look to transition from System Engineering to Software Engineering. Here are some pointers for you:

Build Your Brand

You have a clear understanding of what you want and have taken some great actions towards your goal such as boot camp, personal projects, hackathons, etc. You have all the great ingredients, not put them together and showcase your hard skills and soft skills! LinkedIn looks great, but I suggest building a personal website! 

Operationalized Job Search Process

Good job on setting a great goal: "Software engineer job in the next 3-6 months". Now you can focus on networking, applying, interviewing, and landing that job! Follow a systematic process to track all your applications, interviews, so you can nail out what works and what doesn't work. 

Interview Preparation

As you are looking for a job, make sure you are ready to interview! There are two things do here: 1) Prepare responses to common questions you will get asked in interview – see my sample. 2) Do Mock interviews using tools that you can find here such as Pramp, Gainlo, Placement, etc. Learning Guide

Attend 1-3 Events Every Week

A great way to network, especially when you are job searching is attending events. Attend as many as you can and connect with 2-3 people personally from each event. Tell them about your experience, goals, etc. and get actional insights from them. Learning Guide

Good luck on your job search process, and I hope you get a Software Engineer job in the next 3-6 months! Continue using Career Companion to track your progress!

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