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Three years ago I attended a coding bootcamp. Today I became a Google Developers Expert.

This is the story of my journey and how I got there

I am a Google Developers Expert in Web Technologies

What is a Google Developers Expert?

Let me start with Google’s official definition, and then I will follow with my definition.

A Google Developers Expert (GDE) is a person recognized by Google as having exemplary expertise in one or more of their products. The Google Developers Experts program awards GDEs. Google established and administers the program.

For me, a Google Developer Expert is a person who is a leader in their area of specialization. This person also contributes to the tech community. Contribution can consist of any combination of speaking, writing, open source contribution, training courses or maintaining a repo.

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Want a job in Tech? Here is how to use the top online marketplace for job seekers to get that job.

Want a job in Tech? Here is how to use the top online marketplace for job seekers to get that job.
LinkedIn is the world’s largest talent pool with 3 million active job listings. Let me show you how you can tap into this treasure trove of job listings to find your first — or next — job in tech.

Why Use LinkedIn?

Recruiters will not find you on Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram. Instead, 94% of recruiters will use LinkedIn to vet potential candidates. Almost half of all recruiters only use LinkedIn for social outreach.

Over 20,000 US companies use LinkedIn to recruit. Most of these companies will be using recruiters to fill these open positions. You want to get the attention of these recruiters because they can put your resume in the hands of the hiring managers at these companies.

How Do Recruiters Use LinkedIn?

Recruiters use a product called LinkedIn Recruiter to tap that pool to fill the 3 million active job listings.

LinkedIn Recruiter is the tool that allows recruiters to seek candidates that meet the job requirements for positions they are trying to fill. Here are some of the benefits recruiters receive with this product:

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How I Got Into #Node: Jennifer Bland

Note: Originally published in Node.js Collection publication on medium

Jennifer Bland is a Senior Software Engineer residing in Atlanta, GA. She is an active member of Women Who Code Atlanta. For the past two years, she has been a member of the Leadership Committee for Women Who Code Atlanta as a Technical Lead. As a Technical Lead, she has taught multiple courses and workshops on Node.js, Express.js, MongoDB, and JavaScript.

With her training and work experience, Jennifer was interested in contributing to the Node.js source code, which is Open Source. Jennifer took the initiative to reach out to Franziska Hinkelmann who is an engineer working on Node.js at Google. They met via Google Hangouts and Franziska showed her how to look at the open issues with Node.js.

After searching the list of issues, they found an issue that Jennifer could tackle. From there, Jennifer reached out to the person that submitted the issue to get clarification. Once that information was received, Jennifer was able to make the necessary changes and close the issue. This was Jennifer’s first contribution to the Node.js Open Source code.

We hope that this inspires or guides you in getting started with contributing to Node.js or another open source project.

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Contributing to Open Source isn’t that hard: my journey to contributing to the Node.js project

As a developer, you should consider contributing to open source software. Many of your potential employers will look favorably on these contributions.

But when you’re a new developer, it may feel like contributing to open source is beyond your current skill set. So I’m going to show you how to ignore those feelings of doubt, and how you can start contributing to open source right now.

How I learned Node.js

I first learned about Node.js at my coding bootcamp. The bootcamp specialized in JavaScript. Node.js provides a back-end for a project that is written in JavaScript. So if you have learned JavaScript on the front-end, then you can easily transfer your skills to the back-end with Node.js.

Once I graduated from my coding bootcamp, I was motivated to improve my coding skills as quickly as possible. The only way to do this was to write as much code as possible so I could improve. That’s when I joined freeCodeCamp.

Over a six month period, I completed all four of freeCodeCamp’s original certifications in the freeCodeCamp curriculum. When I got to the section focused on building projects, I used JavaScript and Node.js on the back-end. After completing all the certifications, I worked on one of freeCodeCamp’s initial non-profit projects. The project was for Crimes Committed Against Women.

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