The Craftware Academy’s philosophy – don’t learn alone
You already know what the Academy is, and you know some of its graduates. Jakub Cichacki, Magdalena Grygorczuk, Oskar Harenda, Piotr Kasprzycki, Izabela Pawlak, Agata Pytka, Mateusz Turek, and Michał Wewerek were the main cast of my previous article Craftware Academy – meet adepts of the sixth edition. Maybe you remember what I have promised you then: this doesn’t end with one text. And I’ve never meant writing for SEO and linking to the subsequent articles (although it’s tempting and useful). The reason is much more humane, I just like my interviewees a lot, and I don’t want to say goodbye to them after the first article. 😊 Perhaps, you awaited for my next part of the series? This time, I and my characters will tell you about mentors of Craftware Academy.
When we started the first edition of the Craftware Academy a few years ago, we were sure that the mentors would be its core. Everyone who applies to the Academy theoretically could broaden their knowledge and raise qualifications on their own. They could just (theoretically) type „Salesforce” in the Google browser, select some kind of thematic forum or a group. And there, they could find an interesting link, some good website addresses. Then, just a little bit of free time, a little bit of motivation and they could start education. Is this enough, though? Could you study effectively while being a self-learner?
We help discover the potential
This approach has its followers, but we believe in our mentors and our teaching philosophy: under the eye of those who have practice, who have experience and knowledge, and a gift to pass them along. Anyway, it’s a bit more than a matter of faith. Our approach works: the graduates of Craftware Academy – and there’s almost a hundred of them – successfully carry out projects in Salesforce technology for the biggest global corporations.
At the Academy, we prepare adepts to work in several specialties. They have a choice from, among others, the following directions: developers, testers, and analyst’s paths. Each path has its mentors. For three months, during the Academy, they help participants get through the subsequent phases. The first phase is the theory (Trailheads), and then the second, the practice, that is, a project. The mentors up-to-date verify adepts’ progress in revealing Salesforce secrets.
Does it mean eight hours of lectures and then exams? Not at all! We do not seat students behind desks, and we do not make them take tests. The Academy program includes lectures but primarily – focuses on development. Growth of adepts’ potential, their skills of thinking for themselves, and building partnership between a mentor and student. That’s why we emphasize regular feedback from the mentors. More on how it is under their eye is here, in the article If you’re learning Salesforce, don’t do it by yourself.
Support at any time
The mentors’ group of the sixth Academy consisted of nine people. The following specialist watched over the participants:
- Developers path: Sebastian Ryczek, Anna Wałach, Marcin Zabadaj, Karol Zaorski
- Testers path: Wojciech Bryczek, Małgorzata Palak, Piotr Szeląg
- Analysts path: Jakub Bartczak, Ewelina Eggert
I asked my interviewees, that is, the Academy adepts, what do they value in our experts.
Piotr: “The coincidence was what brought me to the Academy. Ania’s personality and the way she interviewed me convinced me to join Craftware. Except for this internship, I considered other offers I had, there were many recruitments, and after each of them, I just knew that wasn’t it.”
Michał: “It’s amazing in the Academy that all people I got to know here, including the mentors, are special. It wasn’t a coincidence they were here. I’m happy I can continue working with them.”
Jakub: “I remember and value the support of my mentor from the very beginning of the internship when everything was so new and difficult. Even such little things like setting the environment and so on.”
Michał: “The mentors’ assistance was indispensable in the case of Trailheads. It’s a base of knowledge we needed to familiarize ourselves with, but we had some issues, as usual for beginners. We overcame problems thanks to our mentors.”
Mateusz: “They were giving us advice on how to write a clean code; they were helpful when someone was stuck in the middle of a task. But those were just tips, not imposing opinions – each time we had to find the solution on our own.”
Piotr: “When I had difficulties, Marcin helped me, and all troubles were gone. I recall a situation in which his guidance helped me a lot. He showed me many little hints on how to solve problems faster and smoother.”
Agata: “While writing a code in Salesforce, I must take into account what Salesforce provides me with as a ready-made element of the app. In the beginning, it was a big obstacle for me but, thanks to the mentors, I already know I can overcome it; I know how to do it. If not for their support, I wouldn’t be where I am now with my level of knowledge.”
Magdalena: “The mentors didn’t give us a fish, but a pole. And they motivated us to learn more and grow.”
Agata: “Passing knowledge is not easy; not everyone is predisposed to do so. The Academy mentors are good at it. They teach how to find solutions – and that is one of the most significant skills in our job.”
Willingness and readiness to help
Magdalena: “For over three months, we had full care of the mentors, even in late hours. It’s one of the greatest advantages of the Academy.”
Oskar: “I positively assess the mentors’ support; I could always count on them, even if they, besides the Academy, had other projects and a lot on their minds. Not only those who were assigned to my team were helping me.”
Michał: “The mentors are the good spirits of the Academy. We didn’t have to ask for their help, they approached us and made sure that we handle things. It was really nice of them.”
Being there for us
Izabela: “In the first days of the Academy, the mentors made us get through psychically. When a mentor stands by you and says with a smile, “I promise, nothing worse is going to happen here, just try to survive,” you feel better right away. I really appreciate what they have done for us; thanks to them, my mental health wasn’t harmed.”
Mateusz: “They were breaking the silence. When part of the team was staring at the wall, not knowing what to do, a mentor was standing up and saying, “Okey, kids, you need to do this and that.” That was the best motivation.”
Jakub: “Having a mentor by your side was important but not because they were finding the solution for us. That’s not what help is about. The sense of being taken care of is crucial.”
- Expert in the Marketing Team
She has always been associated with the written word – as a journalist and editor in press publications. A copywriter in the new technologies industry for several years. When she does not write, she loves to talk and meet people. In love with electronic music.