Meet Ediz Sonuvar
Ediz is a participant on one of South Bank Innovation’s (SBI) fully funded training and employability programmes. He has worked with our Aspire London team to receive employability coaching alongside studying Web Development with our partner, Code Institute.
Working with us, Ediz has been able to access one of London’s most in demand industries - gaining the skills, confidence and software training to immediately start succeeding - funded by the Greater London Authority and European Social Fund.
Ediz started his course on 21 July 2022 and is currently mid-way through. He has kindly agreed for us to catch-up with him and see how things are going.
Tell us about yourself and how you found your way to this programme.
My name is Ediz Sonuvar. I’m 29, and I’m from Merton in South London.
Not long ago, my girlfriend suggested that I look into coding, and I was presented with an Instagram ad that piqued my interest.
So I did more research into coding and found out about the different types of offers out there, even from competitor organisations, because if I was going to do it, I wanted to do the best type of course for me.
The fact that the Aspire London programme was funded did play a part, but I thought, “well, maybe it's not the only funded programme. However, then I came across Code Institute on the Prospects website, and that instilled a lot of confidence in me about the quality of the programme and made me think that you guys were the best people to go with.
You mentioned that your girlfriend pointed you in the direction of the coding offer - had you been thinking about gaining software development skills for a while?
I think the traditional 9 to 5 approach to working has in the past intimidated me because I didn’t go to Uni, so I suppose it has always seemed a little bit otherworldly or foreign to me.
And from my understanding, coding does afford a bit more flexibility, whether you are employed and working for someone else or whether you are freelancing. Or perhaps even using the skills of coding and computer programming for your own business.
So I liked the flexibility aspect, but I also think that the skills and way of thinking learned in coding are highly transferable and can be applied in business or many other aspects of life.
Those things combined showed me that this was the right fit for me.
Were there any barriers that would have stopped you from participating in this type of training beforehand?
Well, I suppose there is the obvious aspect of funding!
Beyond that, when I think about it, I had never really deeply considered the idea of training in software development because I never allowed myself to be exposed to it or the industry.
That’s interesting, so leading on from that, what attributes do you think your girlfriend saw that prompted her to “join the dots” and link you up with a coding course?
That’s a good question! It’s probably that she saw my logical and analytical side, and (laughing) I’m sure if she were answering, she might talk about my “finickiness” and “attention to detail”, which she might find frustrating but also reaps the benefits of occasionally!
When you’re coding, what are the things you really enjoy about it?
My brain really likes how you are either right or wrong with coding. In school my best subject was maths. I also like the scope for creativity and not just creativity for creativity’s sake - it’s that you are able to be creative and produce something useful. It’s the combination of creativity and practicality that I like.
“I think the traditional 9 to 5 approach to working has in the past intimidated me … [s]o I liked the flexibility aspect, but I also think that the skills and way of thinking learned in coding are highly transferable and can be applied in business or many other aspects of life.”
What do you like about learning on the Code Institute platform?
There’s a lot I like! When I’ve spoken about what I’m doing with people I know, I’ve told them how good it is and how well run it is. There’s not much I can fault. I think you call it the User Interface or User Experience is incredibly clear and pleasurable to use - it’s engaging, but not overwhelming. And of course, there is all the support provided by Slack and the mentors - I particularly like the community because there are so many people on there; I never have to wait long for someone to answer and be generous with their knowledge.
And as I say that, I’m thinking that I was probably put off a career in tech previously because I perhaps had a misconception that it was a lonely career path, but it need not be like that when you have strong communities and tools like Slack.
What are the main things you’ve learned on the programme so far?
I have learned how to manage my time better because it is a self-study programme, and you learn at your own pace. You have to be more independent because the responsibility is all yours, which is good - and good for me, particularly because that is something I’ve struggled with in the past.
I also think that the course has transformed how I approach work because before, I would have put a lot of pressure on myself to achieve outcomes, perhaps too, even too early. Whereas with this programme, I’ve learned to engage with the process and set aside specific amounts of time; whatever I get done in that space of time, I get done.
With this approach, I am getting double the amount of work done. I think time management has achieved that by alleviating stress and the pressure from the process.
Have there been any challenges or barriers to your learning experience so far?
Do you know, I really don’t think there are! I can’t speak more highly of my experience so far.
Have you thought about what you would like to build for your final project?
Yes, absolutely. I’ve been working on a business idea to create a wholefood, vegan, CBD snack range. I’m going to call it “Ed’s Edibles” - so I’d love to create a digital online presence for the business.
And what’s in store for Ediz in the long term - where would you like to go with these skills?
I’m keeping my mind and my options open at the moment. I could perhaps go for a career or perhaps freelance to support me while I develop my business. The way the world is now, businesses without a strong online presence will find it incredibly difficult to succeed, so for that reason, I think coding and web development are the most useful and valuable skills I can learn to help develop and grow my business.
A huge thanks to Ediz for speaking to us. We wish him the best of luck with his final project and next steps.
Ediz is part of our Aspire London programme which offers Londoners the opportunity to study accredited training at Level 4 (post A-level) and raise opportunities to earn more than London Living Wage (£11.95 per hour).
If you’d like to join Ediz, or have considered improving your career prospects with training in anything from:
- Business and Enterprise
- Creative Industries
- Green Industries
- Health and Social Care
- Basic and Employability Skills
SBI’s flexible programmes are supported by London South Bank University and industry to suit all walks of life. Whether you want to study for yourself or get some guidance for your future, we provide training with a range of access and support options. Our courses are funded and supported by the Greater London Authority and European Social Fund.
Check your eligibility and start training today by connecting with us at www.southbankinnovation.co.uk/training