Nagalakshmi from Andhra Pradesh, 21, comes from a humble family of farmers with an interest in singing and playing sports like Throwball. An outstanding student since her childhood, she had been performing exceptionally well in her Telugu-medium school run by the local government, when an NGO called Swadha Foundation came forward to provide mentorship and financial aid for her higher education so that she could have a bright career.
In class 11th, she chose Physics, Chemistry and Maths as her major subjects under the Science stream and went on to pursue Electronics and Communication Engineering with the hopes of becoming a VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration) Development Engineer.
In her final year of college, she realised that the scope of VLSI in our country was very dim. In addition to this, companies based outside India don’t really give a lot of chances to freshers without any practical experience in the VLSI field. Realising that there wasn’t a lot of scope for her in this sector at present, she decided to drop it altogether and appear for an off-campus placement drive conducted by her college. Under the guidance of her NGO mentors, she shifted her focus to an in-demand field like Software Development and applied for jobs that offered tech-based opportunities, thinking she can improve her skills in Coding simultaneously while working.
However, things didn’t seem to work in her favour even as she kept her personal interest at bay.
While appearing for interviews, Nagalakshmi faced a lot of rejections because of her below-average skills in both technical and communicational aspects. It was slowly getting hard for her to have a career she could be proud of and this was something she had never imagined being an excellent student throughout.
As her peers got placed, she decided to get affected by rejections and began to research for online sources to learn about Coding in-depth. It was while doing this research that she came across Masai School and its Income Share Agreement that didn’t require an aspiring Coder to pay the fees unless they earn more than Rs.5,00,000 per annum. She surfed online through the courses it offered and decided to apply for Android Development, as she had always been fascinated with the way apps worked across different platforms. This was her chance to learn about how these things worked.
Masai felt like the light at the end of a dark tunnel for Nagalakshmi- so much so that she didn’t even wait to complete her graduation and joined the course while she was still in her final year of college.
After joining, she had her initial struggles with the 9-9-6 schedule followed at Masai, owing to the fact that she still had to manage her studies while attending all the classes here. However, with time, she got used to the discipline and the pace maintained by the team and started enjoying every bit of what she was learning- be it the technical knowledge be it the Android components, data structures and algorithms, languages like Java and Kotlin or basic soft skills- she had not had such an experience like this before at any of her previous institutions. During the course, she developed a music player and an e-commerce app and felt really proud of herself when her countless efforts towards polishing her UI designing skills began to show on the screen.
It was time again for her to sit for the placement process, this time at Masai. While she was very positive about getting a job this time, her lack of confidence in her communication skills made it difficult for her to clear the interviews. As she started facing rejections, she found herself in the same loop again and went into a gloomy state of mind. The team at Masai got very concerned about her emotional well-being and organised an exclusive counselling session for her with a therapist to help her cope up with the whole situation.
Her hard work started to pay off when within the next 6 weeks, she got selected in all the 3 companies she had applied at and was now in a situation where she could pick any of the available job opportunities suiting her needs, and goals. She finally joined Global Fair as an Android Developer in April 2021.
Today, Nagalakshmi is the first woman in her family with a job and that too with a high salary package. She is a true inspiration for all the students in her village as well as the NGO she has been associated with- so much so that everyone who knows about her life journey wishes to become a Coder one day and be a student at Masai!
Watch her narrate her exciting journey at Masai in this video: