I got my frontend certifications with FreeCodeCamp back in 2017. I remember how daunting it was to apply to jobs and feeling ready for the workforce. Every time I sent an application in, I felt like it went to the void, never to be heard from again.
I wanted a way to stand out amongst other applicants, and coding boot camp students. I challenged myself every day to "level up" as quickly as possible, and ultimately I ended up competing in a lot of hackathons.
It taught me a lot of things that I wouldn't have traditionally have gotten learning on my own. I learned how to work with others in a team setting, use git, use 3rd party libraries, and had a lot of mentorship and help along the way from senior developers
When I started applying to jobs, one employer took a chance on me. I was far from qualified compared to other applicants applying for the position. But he could tell that I was eager to learn new things and picked up things rather quickly, thanks to competing in hackathons. So he took a chance, and the rest is history.
I'm hoping to give back to the community from where I started. I recently launched a podcast with one of my really close coding friends. It's called Code Chefs.
We recently recorded a podcast about our experiences with Hackathons https://codechefs.dev/hackathons
Hopefully, this helps anyone looking to learn more about what a hackathon is and what you can learn from it!