After attending Marquette University to study interior design for a couple of years, Sonya was back in Detroit. She was working as a barista in Detroit, when she first heard about Udemy from a friend.

Detroit’s unemployment rate has hovered around 15% for the past five years, so Sonya was happy to have a job. But like a lot of young college-educated Americans, she just knew she could do more. After returning from Hawaii, Sonya started hanging out with a tech-savvy group of folks, and felt like she could bring an original perspective to the table.

I was always into HTML, and the more I spoke with friends of mine who were in the tech field, the more I thought about how I could combine my design skills with new skills in coding.

That’s when she started learning with us here at Udemy. She took the initiative to check out  Zed Shaw’s course on Python and started up the steep but rewarding learning curve to Python mastery.

We talk about ‘making a move’ at Udemy, but Sonya’s living the dream. Thanks to what she learned from Zed Shaw’s course, Sonya’s set to make a real life move: this fall she’ll be relocating to the tech capital of the world, San Francisco.

After taking Zed Shaw’s course, ‘Learn Python The Hard Way,’ I applied to a selective crash course in San Francisco and was accepted! His course introduced me to a whole new world that I thought I could never be part of.

Some cities in the Rust Belt have fared better than others. Cities like Pittsburgh have transformed themselves from smog-ridden industrial giants into burgeoning centers of e-commerce and medical technology. Other just haven’t been able to make the transition.

A lot of people feel cut off from the benefits of the Web 2.0 revolution. Despite spending thousands of dollars on bachelor’s degrees, youth unemployment is through the roof, and entry into the job marketplace has become overly competitive. Add to the mix the fact that a staggering 30% of the American population has an undergraduate degree and you start to wonder – how am I supposed to rise to the top? And how do I get into fields like programing without paying another $100,000 for a computer science degree?

Zed’s course made programming approachable and entertaining, especially for someone who had so little experience in the field. And Zed himself was a huge help throughout the course. Learning with Zed gave me the confidence, inspiration, and motivation to pursue programming further – to the point of making it a new career.

Now Sonya’s looking forward to a new career as a web developer.

We here at Udemy want Sonya’s story to become the new norm. We want to see hard-working folks reach their dreams and make the moves that will improve their quality of life. We want people to feel like their options are unlimited. We want to be the starting block on the race to achieve your ultimate potential, faster.

*** Want to follow in Sonya’s footsteps? Take the same course she did to learn Python. ***

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