Graduate Success

Alphgeormassey Tufulasi Isaako

While some of his high school tech friends opted for university, Massey Isaako decided to fast track his tech career by enrolling in a 40 week Yoobee diploma. Not only did it get him into the industry faster, but it also gave him access to some unique and exciting opportunities.

Why Yoobee?
Yoobee provides practical training to help students land jobs in the tech industry. I’d read about several Yoobee graduates who went on to do great work, and the tutors all had real industry experience. I reasoned that if the tutors were experienced tech industry professionals and their graduates were successful, Yoobee must be a good place to study! It was a choice that definitely fast tracked my success. A few of my high school friends took the university pathway. They’re still studying and will graduate with large student loans. Some of them are aiming to reach a similar role to mine but will need to wait another two to three years.

What was studying at Yoobee like?
The first ten weeks were a refresher on what I’d already learned in high school, with the addition of several new concepts/techniques (i.e. mobile to desktop design) and a new language: JavaScript. As the year progressed the learning pace increased, and I found that previous concepts taught were coming into use. The knowledge I gained was combined to design/build some awesome websites. I learned much more than I expected during that 40 week period, things that I continue to use each day.

I enjoyed being tutored by an experienced person, someone who explained concepts in a clear and concise way. My tutor was an industry professional, and his experience really showed through the way he taught us. I appreciated being in a small class which gave us more one-on-one time with our tutor, and I loved studying alongside like-minded people. This helped me to grow faster as a web developer.

Tied in with all this was the fact that we were learning industry relevant technologies. This has certainly proven true where I’m working. The culture that was cultivated in class was conducive to learning and development, just as it is in my current role.

How did Yoobee help you get started in the industry?
Yoobee strengthened the foundation of knowledge that began in high school. Even those in my class who had no experience in web landed their own roles within a few months of graduating. I started using Agile at Yoobee and continue using it at SilverStripe where it is no longer a methodology, but a mindset. Additionally, I’m also using Git, SASS (and BEM), PHP (SilverStripe PHP Framework), Vagrant, Composer and more. Yoobee introduced me to the fundamental skills needed in web development, which  I continue to build on and use to this day.

Right from the start our tutor pushed us to sign up to Summer of Tech, a programme which helps tech graduates land paid internships. Through Summer of Tech I secured an internship with SilverStripe, which went on to become a full-time job. During my internship I was introduced to a lot of things, including how to work with the basic technologies used at SilverStripe. Some of these were actually taught at Yoobee too (i.e. Vagrant, Git and SASS), so I didn’t feel like I was thrown into the deep end of the tech scene. It was good to know that the 40 weeks I spent studying closely mirrored what I was using as an intern at SIlverStripe. I felt prepared, and I think that’s the best feeling an educational institute can give you.

Now I have a permanent job as a Junior Web Developer at SilverStripe, building websites for a range of clients, from District Health Boards to full blown government departments. A typical day involves everything from building features for the current site, bug fixing, peer reviewing code, client meetings and more. I work with awesome people who are very knowledgeable, and always set aside time to give me pointers and help me grow. Working at SilverStripe is a lot of fun!

To check out Massey’s work go to:

New Zealand owned and operated web development company SilverStripe is an intuitive Content Management System (CMS) and flexible framework that helps equip web teams to achieve outstanding results. SilverStripe’s CMS is an open source web content management system used by governments, businesses, and non-profit organisations all over the world.  The core of its software is SilverStripe Framework, a PHP Web application framework.

Alphgeormassey Studied