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teaching at university

Yosuf Ali
2 min read

I only recently realised it's been a very long time since I last I last posted a piece. Almost a year. I was going to put a lot of content into this one post, but I thought it'd be better to separate them out.

I guess it's been an interesting year. I spent the previous (my second) academic year working at my university, teaching first-year computer science students which was pretty cool. One of the reasons why I decided to apply for the position was to solidify my understanding of what I'd learned myself the year prior. You can't really teach something you don't know. But the other motivation was to get out of my comfort zone and to develop myself in ways more than just technical. Public speaking isn't exactly my forte, but it's a skill I feel I'll probably need in the future. Teaching a room of 30+ students is a good stepping stone, and it turns out I'm not so bad at it now.

If you're the smartest person in the room, you're probably in the wrong room.

It also meant I got to spend my day to day hours with teaching assistants, lecturers, and professors. Multitudes more contact hours with super smart people. Spending time with their combined knowledge was another reason why it was so compelling to work there.

Spending a year teaching at university gives you a real appreciation of how much effort the teachers and staff go to. I mean you'd think of course it's hard, they're teaching at university. But it's hard to fully acknowledge the lengths those who genuinely care about teaching will go to to do a great job.

I stopped teaching at City at the end of June because I found a summer internship. Referring to my teachers as my colleagues took some getting used to. But I'm glad I had the opportunity to spend more time with such hardworking people and to teach some awesome humans.


Also, see if you can spot me in the cover photo of this post.

It's from a two-week coding bootcamp that take's place at the beginning of the first-year Computer Science course at City. It's a rigorous introduction to programming using the Processing programming language, which is based on Java. At the end of the two weeks, the students present what they've managed to build during that time at a fair, which is what's happening in the picture.