The Long Road

I anticipate my career to involve software development for the rest of my life. I need to start preparing for the intense journey to come. That being said, I want to discuss The Long Road apprenticeship pattern. It seems directly relative to the situation I find myself in, which is a soon-to-be entry level software developer.

The Long Road is a portrayed as a direction apprentices should take when new to software development. It is asserted that those looking to journey down this proverbial road should not be looking to become instantaneously rich and famous. Instead, it is suggested that we ought to steadily increase our knowledge and skills throughout the decades to come. We should not feel obligated to accept any promotion that could potentially constrict our quest for knowledge.

I realize applying this pattern will likely mean turning down promotions in favor of strengthening my overall skills. But honestly, I don’t think I’d be comfortable taking a job I didn’t enjoy just because the pay was better. I’d rather spend my professional career looking forward to going to work, instead of potentially dreading it. For that reason, I believe The Long Road is an appropriate pattern for me to follow.

When beginning to apply this pattern, it is suggested to think about where we might end up in the decades ahead when traveling down this “long road.” Personally, it is hard for me to imagine what I’ll be doing ten or twenty years from now. But one of the immediate goals I’ve set for myself after graduation is to learn as many programming languages as possible. This ought to require a lot of reading, programming, and collaboration with other developers. I’m genuinely looking forward to it.

If I were to guess what I’ll be doing many years from now, I am hoping to become well-versed enough in the software development world to have helped others in some substantial way. With all the reading on software development I plan on doing in the decades ahead, perhaps I will have written my own book or two on the side. I guess only time can tell where I’ll end up, but I think I’ll always stay on “The Long Road” in favor of any promotion that might distract me from furthering my overall career. Ultimately, I predict I’ll always be a software developer in one way or another.


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