Hire Me!Stephan L.

About Me

Me in Afghanistan

Hey! I'm Steve, a former grunt and a lifetime computer nerd. Here is a quick rundown on who I am and why I'm here.

Ever since I was about eight years old, I was obsessed with computers. That's when my dad came home with our first PC -- sporting a 28.8k modem, a 2GB hard drive, and running good ol' Windows 95. I would get yelled at all the time because I would constantly break things on it trying to learn how to "hack". As I got into my early teens, I taught myself basic web development using HTML/CSS, PHP, and MySQL. Flash and Dreamweaver were also pretty popular then, so I added them into the mix along with Photoshop. I tried to tackle the C programming language around this time as well, but resources were slim back then, and the only thing I had to learn from was the Brian Kernighan book. That was more than I could handle, so I continued to make websites and custom phpBB themes. I then took an intro to C++ course when I was in the ninth grade, but I knew most of the things that we covered in class from trying to learn C. My school didn't offer any other computer science classes, and I also started to drift away from coding because it wasn't the cool thing to do. After I graduated high school, I enlisted in the Army, and I was out the door before my eighteenth birthday.

I started my military career by spending four years in the Army as an Airborne Infantryman. Following that, I transferred to a Mountain Infantry unit in the Connecticut National Guard, where I served for two more years. My body took quite a beating overseas, so I tried extending my military career by joining the Air National Guard. I enlisted as a Loadmaster on the C-130J aircraft, where I was able to work full-time for a little over four years. Sadly (for the most part), after a little over ten and a half years of service, I was medically discharged due to the prior injuries I obtained in combat.

After I was released, I spent the next few years going to college and working as many hours as possible. Shortly after obtaining my associate degree, I had a child, and my focus shifted away from education for the time being. I worked my way up the management ladder, and after a few years, I started to get back into tech. However, being a single parent, making the jump into tech wasn't such an easy option. I decided to go back to school to finish my bachelor's degree before I tried making such a drastic career change. I figured that with my years of management experience coupled with a bachelor's degree in management, I would have something to fall back on if things didn't work out. In the beginning, I would do some coding while I was enrolled, and I was able to finish the Responsive Web Design Certificate from freeCodeCamp. After that, the schoolwork started to pile up, and I couldn't multitask anymore. I stopped coding for about eight months until I finished my degree at the end of last December.

That brings us to the present. I created this project to enroll in the next cohort for the VetsWhoCode boot camp beginning in March '21. This page will be constantly updated as I learn new things throughout the cohort to showcase my growth as a coder. I am finally in a place where I can focus all my extra energy on my craft and hope to obtain a lifelong dream of being a developer!