Craig Jones, a learner from Atlanta, Georgia, shares how he used edX and W3Cx courses to stay current in his field of work, supplement his resume, and further his job search.
I started my professional career in 1996 as a graphic designer in marketing communications for a rapidly growing telecom, and soon found myself pulled into creating design and graphics for the company’s first web site. Over the next four years, I moved from web designer to web developer, to lead, to manager, and that’s when I stopped writing code.
Fast forward fifteen years to the present: a few months ago my company went through some restructuring and I found myself in transition, looking for my next role. In the meantime, I wanted to keep my brain stimulated.
I’ve followed the growth of HTML and CSS over the years, but suddenly things looked really different on the web. What is this magic? My curiosity was piqued, so I began reading and looking for tutorials and that’s how I found W3Cx and the HTML5 series of courses. I decided to enroll to catch up on old skills, and to pursue certification for good measure.
The HTML5 series has certainly exceeded my expectations for brain stimulation!
I expected to polish up my skills on web site development and to learn how to use HTML5 and CSS3 to create more dynamic and interactive sites. All of that was provided, but also so much more.
Community is another very strong aspect of this series. Not only are the instructors and teaching assistants very active in the fora, so too are many of the students. Stuck on a problem? Post it, show your work, and you will get guidance. Post your finished projects and you’ll get feedback and sometimes suggestions on how to make your work even better. Everyone was positive, helpful, and engaged.
This series has done much more for me than providing some engaging activity while I am job searching. It has, in fact, helped my search.
By featuring my W3Cx certification I’ve gained some hands-on credibility with recruiters and hiring managers.
I have also picked up freelance work creating variations of existing web pages for A/B testing, which helps me keep learning, and also keeps my resume current with active work.
My learner’s story is probably different from that of most students who embark on the HTML5 series, but in the end our achievements, and a great many of the benefits, are the same. If you are thinking about taking these courses, stop deliberating and take the plunge. You won’t regret it.