At Hyper Island, we love hearing student stories. We often reconnect with alumni and talk about all things reflection and current business agendas. This time, however, we get to discover the perspectives of two current students who are both developing a critical technical skill set for future ways of working. Here, they take us through their journey so far and thoughts to the future as they prepare to graduate next year and step into an unprecedented professional world. 

Sigge Labor is a keen coder and rock climber, who is currently developing his skills on our Frontend Developer program. Christopher Trouillot is from Montreal, Canada, and is thriving on our Data Analyst program.

Hey both! How has the Hyper Island experience treated you to date?

S: My Hyper Island experience from the beginning to now has been both intense and adventurous. I’ve found myself in many new unexpected situations, both pleasant and uncomfortable. It’s something I think Hyper does very well: putting you in new situations. But it’s from those, at the time a bit frightening experiences, we grow the most. I have Hyper to thank for giving me opportunities to challenge my fears.

C: I would say that my Hyper journey has been filled with a lot of surprises and a lot more group work than I ever anticipated, but it has been fun.

I have had all the opportunities to grow into a leadership role but also to learn more about the industry I want to work in.

I’m now at my industrial placement. Prior to it, I was looking for something more in the marketing insights realm and now I can say that my internship position is literally in the Marketing Insights Team—so it’s a dream come true.

Christopher, how have you found the internship process?

C: 2020 has surely been challenging when it came to internships. However, having spent a few months learning remotely, I was quite comfortable when it came to online interviews. I was offered 3 internships and got to choose the one I wanted the most. I had to turn down two great internships positions, but ultimately, I found what I really wanted to do.

Sigge, you’ve started your own company! How has self-employment treated you so far?

S: Yes, together with a friend from class, August! The first step was to set out a foundation for the company. We asked ourselves, “What’s our purpose, and what are our values, and goals? How will we operate? What kinds of clients are we looking for and how do we find them?”. The journey so far has been sometimes challenging and stressful, but the joy from building my own company together with one of my closest friends weighs it all up. The company’s attention is split between agency work and start up. We are currently building an exciting online service. To earn a living in the meantime, we are building websites and web apps for companies and organizations.

Looking ahead to your post-graduation lives, how do you view the employment landscape?

There will always be a need for developers.

S: I’ve noticed that because of the uncertainties, companies are a bit afraid of hiring new talents and some are even laying off employees. At the same time, companies are realizing and understanding the importance of a fresh digital presence. Traditional physical services and tools are being translated into the world of ones and zeros. In the end, we see a big increase in demand for coders and even though the economic dip, I don’t think it will change for quite a while.

C: I believe that the industry I am going in is in dire need of competent data analysts. The most important thing is that companies are able to see that a data analyst has to work in a team environment in order to improve not only their skills, but also to be a true asset to any company.

Communicating insights is a key component of the data analyst role.

What benefits do you see from studying at Hyper Island?

S: So many benefits come with working with actual clients, such as defining the outcome, asking the right questions, reflecting on our projects and learning from ’real’ mistakes, what could’ve been done better, and so on. I’ve benefited tremendously from this when I’ve worked with clients from my own company. Then there’s the opportunity to grow a network. Like everything else, this isn’t just handed to you. But with a little effort, like accepting invitations to code-related events, adding the industry leader on LinkedIn, or talking to the lecturer after a workshop, you can build valuable connections.

C: I do believe that going to Hyper Island has given me an advantage because I’ve been exposed to so many different industry leaders from such different walks of life. It’s helped me choose which part of the data analyst world I wanted to be in. Meeting with clients made me more comfortable when it came time to find an internship because I had built up the confidence to talk to people from the industry, and I had a portfolio to show.

What are your goals going into life after Hyper Island?

S: For a long time, I’ve had the idea of wanting my life to generate a positive impact on the
world. I’ve come to understand that everyone can do something. And since a lot of my time will be spent on work, I want what I do to have a positive effect. So besides creating stunning websites for companies, I’m currently working on two projects with the goals to facilitate communication in the ’new’ digital space, and a third which has the aim to make second-hand clothes more popular.

C: I think I’ll try to encourage future employers to be more inclusive and also make sure to always have processes in place to see that everyone feels included—even if I have to do it myself!

Any top tips for future Hyper Island students?

S: When it comes to learning, find a way that excites you. For me that is building a lot of things. From small Google Chrome extensions to bigger passion projects.

The complexity of code can be very intimidating, but don’t be afraid of trying

The worst thing that can happen is that you realize you’re in over your head, so you scrap the project and do something else. But even when this happens, you’ll probably learn something. Enjoy your time in school; it’s a beautiful and unique experience. Spread love.

C: I would advise future students to trust the process and be open minded. Try as much as possible because it’s the only way to know what you will like. Once you’ve found it, just go for it, don’t hold back.

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Article updated on: 11 March 2024