Cue the drumroll; group projects have arrived! Welcome to the most dramatic week of class!!
Throughout all of the years of schooling, we as humans inevitably joined forces with those most likeminded to us, and this educational endeavor has been no different. Over the course of these three months, whenever a group task was assigned we gravitated over to our little tribes and took on projects operating on those mini-teams. When we were told that there would be 4 group projects, we submitted our ideas for approval and from there the selection process opened up. And then, programmer-hell broke loose! Remember the scene in Mean Girls where everyone took on animal personas and attacked each other in the cafeteria?! It was like that .. okay, maybe that’s a stretch. But there were great debates over who would be assigned to what, and fingers pointing in all directions and there definitely was a need for mediation. Alas, the dust settled within an hour or so and off to the races we went.
[ I think in hindsight, this is an awesome testament to how passionate everyone in this course has become about creating awesome content ]
Then came the growing pains. It’s all fun and games until you ACTUALLY have free reign, and ACTUALLY have to apply your newly acquired knowledge. Talk about putting your skills to the test! Lessons (along with a few laughs and a-ha moments) were quickly learned. Three days into our project, we found out that two of our gems were not compatible, so back to square one we went. After re-evaluating the approach, we gained comfort in working in a less consecutively-structured order, and stretched our limbs beyond the developmental process in which we each were most well-versed in. Just because you really like front-end doesn’t mean you can only work on front-end; it is best to have an understanding of the entire app you just built. There is nothing more embarrassing than having someone ask you how you created that modal and you not having any clue!
Drama aside, this week was overall a great experience. It was super refreshing to see our group communicate openly and with conviction. When someone was getting off track or I was working on the wrong project, there was no hesitation to tell each other that. There was no issue with saying “dude, get back on track, what are you DOING?” We would usually laugh and then stop obsessively researching that stupid way of adding in a color map, and apply the constructive criticism our peers were offering. High-five to my team for manning up and owning our technical shortcomings. It’s all part of the process, and was our first taste at what it would be like in the real world workforce.