Seeking a role in fashion, Victory Fejokwu studied apparel and textile technology. But, she landed in an insurance-related customer service position, and after a year, she was done. She yearned to challenge herself and earn more. She began considering possible career changes.
“I started to hear the term UX/UI being thrown around,” said Victory. “I decided to look into it and see what it was all about.” Needless to say, she was interested. Victory quit her job, moved in with her parents, and pursued Georgia Tech UX/UI Boot Camp, knowing that the university name — and the additional support and included career services — would far outweigh the cost.
Embracing the boot camp — and stepping outside her comfort zone
The UX/UI boot camp covers every aspect of the UX/UI process, a workflow that typically begins with user research. Victory worked with her cohort to interview people, run guerrilla testing, and gather as much information as possible. At first, reaching out to people fell outside her comfort zone. But she knew it was a necessity in the field — and diving in full force was the best way for her to grow.
“The boot camp taught me how to speak with confidence,” said Victory. “How to present well without notes, how to make my voice known and heard instead of shying away. I was pushed to excel by my classmates with prior skills and expertise. I wanted to become my best self — for people to see my work and say, ‘wow.’”
Working as team — and generating collective growth
Victory’s intense drive served her well throughout the boot camp, equipping her to handle every challenge with grace and positivity. She fed off the energy and motivation of others, and she absorbed all the knowledge she could. “Our cohort felt like one body with a collaborative, collective mind,” said Victory. “It was a beautiful thing. To this day we still share ideas and help each other grow.”
Victory was impressed with her instructor, Holly, and the TAs who consistently went above and beyond to assist learners in finding solutions, whether their code was broken by a single missing comma or an entire section of mistakes. “The whole staff was [a] wealth of information,” said Victory. “I still reach out to Holly for advice — I don’t know what I would have done without her.”
Putting in the work — and reaping the rewards
Victory’s first group project set the stage for her boot camp experience. Miguel, Chandra, and Mary Katherine were dedicated and passionate teammates — they turned out to be the best group she could have asked for. “It was a resounding success,” said Victory. “We spent all our free time at coffee shops or at Mary Katherine’s, talking through our plan and running through practice presentations. I had never been part of a group so dedicated to the tasks at hand.”
The team worked with a real company — Conscious Medicine — to conduct UX/UI research and identify user problems that were resulting in low customer documentation of their new elimination diet plan. Victory’s group identified the missing link: the customers had no sense of community. Their conclusion ended up being spot-on, matching up with exactly what Conscious Medicine themselves had found. Then, the team got to work building an application, website, and other platforms for customers to document and share their experiences — and generate better results and medical data.
Embodying new roles and making a difference
After completing the boot camp, Victory secured a freelance position for Candor Intelligent Solutions, an IT startup. Her contract role has taken a similar arc as her experience in the boot camp, starting from the very beginning of the UX/UI process with user research, and growing into full-on website development and design. Victory has taken the lead at every stage. “I often go back to some of my boot camp lessons and PowerPoints,” she said. “I’m really applying everything I’ve learned — all of the skills, tools, and processes covered at the boot camp. The startup is happy with what I’ve been able to do so far, and they’re recommending me to a few more startups in need of UX/UI leadership.”
Over the course of the past year, Victory has evolved into a consultant, contractor, freelancer, UX/UI designer, front end developer, and leader. “It’s different than working for an already-established company,” she said. “I’m helping them become one, and I can immediately see my input, how it’s helped them, and where it’s led them. The boot camp unearthed a passion that I didn’t know I had — and the skills that I needed to bring it to pass. It gave me a boldness I didn’t have before. I’m more confident in my voice and making it known than ever before, and I’m not afraid of taking a leading role — I know I have that capacity now.”