My Microsoft LEAP Apprenticeship Program Journey — The Beginning.

Michelle Aniuchi
3 min readJan 27, 2020

Hi everyone. If you are connected with me on LinkedIn you’d probably have noticed a change in my new headline. Well yes, I got into the Microsoft LEAP program. Yay me!! Over the course of the 16 weeks, I’ll be dropping updates on my journey as I undergo the program. But for now, here’s an introduction to how it all began.

My story is probably a lot more different (and probably boring) from those you’ll see from my colleagues because I have have a technical background. There were no dramatic career changes or real time revelations about going into the technology field. Not only did I study Information Technology in the university, I have been an actively sharing about my coding projects here as well as on LinkedIn. However for the quite some time, I had been looking for a way to break into the industry — although not that aggressively (because of other plans in the pipeline at the time).

Fortunately, I’m active on twitter and we all know twitter has a very active developer community that is every open to sharing opportunities. So I stumbled across a tweet from Adaora who works on Microsoft cognition team sharing a link calling for applications from women for the Microsoft LEAP program software engineering track in Nigeria.

It was music to my ears. However while going through the requirements, I felt my spirit dampen a little. After going through a brief phase of impostor syndrome and wondering if I was going to be good enough to be considered, I put on my big girl panties and decided to apply anyway. All I asked myself was what was the worst that could happen? *insert shrug here*. So anyway, I put pen to paper (not literally of course), drafted my CV in markdown format and sent in my application. Easy peasy. I was called for an interview less than a week later and I was excited.

The interview was for about 20 minutes. I spoke about the projects on my portfolio, the technologies I was familiar with and answered questions on my goals and how I intend to take advantage of the opportunity if I got into the program.

Needless to say, I scaled the interview and I got my congratulatory mail, just before the festivities of the last year began. On the 13th of January 2020, I resumed at the Wragby Business Solutions and Technologies Limited—Microsoft partner and Co-Host of the second cohort of the LEAP program — for the training phase of the program.

It has been two weeks and a day since the program started and it has been quite the experience. On the first day, the Microsoft LEAP program business manager (West Africa), Princess Anya, launched the program and introduced us to the Technical Instructor, JohnMark Obiefuna. I also had the opportunity to be acquainted with my fellow LEAPers.

Subsequently during the week, training sessions began. Coming from a JavaScript background, the coding labs and assignments with C-Sharp (C#) — the language of instruction — have been quite the learning experience. The “strict typeness” of the C# language as opposed to the “loose typeness” of JavaScript, is one of the things I have had to bear in mind as I work with the language. I have also enjoyed the DevOps labs as well — agile management, setting up projects for teams and understanding how to implement version control in Azure DevOps — which took place in the second week.

Today, we had the opportunity to meet up at the Microsoft Nigeria office for a meet and greet session. It was a very warm event with lots of friendly welcoming faces and invigorating speeches and conversations. There was an introduction of quite a number of mentors — from Wragby team, the Microsoft team in Nigeria and in Redmond. I look forward to interacting with them during the next few month of this program and tapping from their wealth of experience in this vast industry of technology.

So far, the journey has been exciting. I like the fact that the language of choice is a core software development language and the possibilities in the use of such a language are quite endless from web development, to game development to artificial intelligence and virtual reality. I’m really looking forward to all the fun, innovative things I can do with this knowledge I’m gaining and the subsequent experience I’ll get from it and I’ll be sure to carry you guys along.

Till next time.