How Arnab Majumdar Stayed On-Trend in Fashion, with Technology
As a fashion designer, teacher, and entrepreneur, Arnab Majumdar has always been inspired by the intersection of fashion, technology, and art. But when he started his own small fashion company, he quickly discovered just how easy it could be to lose the thread of each field.
“In fashion, you’re always taught to be on top of trends and new technology,” Arnab said. “But I found myself limited by not understanding all the new technologies available.”
As the owner of a small business, Arnab outsourced work to overseas contractors. Managing these contracts, running his site, and getting the brand off the ground became more difficult without relevant technical skills. Even with a minor in IT, Arnab still felt behind.
“I felt like a dinosaur,” Arnab said. “I have a long career in front of me, so I knew I needed to make my skills future-proof.”
It was time for Arnab to retool his tech skills.
Real world education
Arnab comes from a strong educational background—he had taught at the university level for several years after getting his MA in fashion from Northwestern. But Arnab knew he wanted a program centered around real-world skills, not classroom learning.
“I liked that the Northwestern Coding Boot Camp wasn’t a bachelor’s degree program. Being in a boot camp environment meant I’d be creating actual consumer facing products right away, which is exactly where I wanted to be,” Arnab said.
A few weeks into the 24-week coding boot camp, Arnab was already writing real-world code.
“My second class project involved building a full-stack app that let people make appointments with their service provider,” Arnab said. “It’s called Adam’s Front Desk, and I’m really proud of it—and not just because of all the front- and back-end code. We built a social aspect into it, and I love that.”
From there, Arnab’s passion for building the kinds of projects he wanted to see in the world grew.
Making it work
“One of the reasons I did so well in the course was just plain hard work. I made sure I did homework before class every week, and I tried to do my best for every assignment, every project. I always gave 100%,” Arnab said.
His hard work paid off. Arnab found himself energized not just by mastering more and more programming languages but also by his fellow classmates, TAs, and especially his instructors.
“The boot camp really surprised me,” Arnab said. “My faculty was amazing. I was exposed to so many different ways of learning, and they each prepared me for the career I have now as a support engineer at ShopRunner.”
While Arnab is working at his dream job in tech, he’s quick to point out that there are many different ways to land a job in tech after the boot camp.
Tearing up the tech runway
After graduation, Arnab shopped his new skills around at several meetups and networking events in his area. It wasn’t long before he made connections.
“I met a recruiter for ShopRunner at an LGBT meet-up and recruiting fair, and it was just a great match,” he said. “They saw my GitHub, LinkedIn, and liked my tech interview, and now I’m part of the team.”
Support to find your voice
Arnab credits his success in his current role to the extensive coding boot camp classwork and the additional support from his career services advisors.
“The things I learned during the boot camp helped me get the job, but it was the help from career services—editing my resume, practicing interview questions, and just listening to me and encouraging me throughout the process—that helped me start my new career,” Arnab said. “Once you feel supported and receive the info you want, everything else clicks into place.”
Learning new languages and technical skills is challenging, but with the right team of TAs, teachers, classmates, and advisors, you can not only get up to speed but also thrive in any number of in-demand tech fields.
“Technology is big and growing and changing all the time, but you can find your voice,” Arnab said. “No matter what you’re into—machine learning, UX, UI, psychology, body awareness, tactile design—you can find your niche. Because the best code comes from doers who actually understand the products they’re making.”
Arnab’s final piece of advice to make your new career future-proof is to embrace what makes you special.
“Technology needs more diversity. You will find your voice.”