Apprenticeship Patterns

After reading Chapter 1 and the introductions for Chapters 2 through 6 of Dave Hoovers and Adewale Oshineye’s Apprenticeship Patterns, I feel that I was really fascinated about some of the topics and ideas that I saw.

Entering the industry following the ideas of being an apprentice (not necessarily in the literal sense or an actual apprenticeship program) is something that I think is really interesting as well as being a good mindset to have regardless of where you are in your career. As was stated in the reading, many of the patterns many not apply as much to you depending on your experience, but I think having the mentality to constantly seek to improve yourself is something that really applies to every part of life.

The story about the Zen master and the young philosopher in the introduction to Chapter 2 was really interesting because the idea of “emptying your cup” in order to open yourself up to different approaches is something that would be difficult to do without a strong self-awareness. I think that for many people, reading this could be the first step in reaching a point where you’re able to put down your pride and your past experiences/habits and just listen. If you were to act like the philosopher in the story, you’re not as likely to have more experienced colleagues want to continue to teach you. I imagine most people aren’t as patient as a Zen master.

The idea of perpetual learning brought up in the introduction to Chapter 5, while a good mindset to have throughout your entire career, is something that is really important for people who will soon enter the industry (or even before that). To someone about the start their career, if you begin your journey following this path, then you’re sure to be able improve and find yourself in a much better position that if you didn’t. If you don’t focus on improving yourself early on, you might end up stagnating and finding that after years in the industry that you’ve been standing still the whole time.

Overall, these readings have been immensely useful in improving my mindset. I can see why this was assigned at a critical point in the Computer Science curriculum. I can also see why people would end up reading the whole thing, because I’m sure that learning about many of the patterns found in this book will continue to help me in the future. Once someone finishes up their degree, there will no longer be any external force pushing them to continue learning, so being able to continue to seek out knowledge is something that you’ll have to do on your own. Finding topics to study that interest you and will help to improve yourself is something that shouldn’t be overlooked.

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