At Telerik Academy, we have a fantastic superhuman team! We know that, but today we're going to tell you why.
Telerik Academy is the place where you can launch an IT career in just 6 months
, regardless of your background, education or age. Our technical trainers have a crucial role in this process. These are the people who train future digital builders. What unites them is the belief that success is about helping someone else to achieve their dreams.
But what does it mean to be a technical trainer?
Well, let’s ask Nadya Atanasova and Petar Raykov, Technical Training Managers at Telerik Academy.
Nadya and Petаr have nearly 20 years of IT experience, and they lead the technical trainers' team which consist of more than 10 people. They gave an exciting look inside their team and shared more about the role of a technical trainer, what brings them together and how they spend their time outside work.
Keep reading to learn more about the technical trainers at Telerik Academy Alpha
The interview was conducted and initially published in economy.bg with the headline “The IT teams in Bulgaria: The technical trainers at Telerik Academy Alpha“.
Can you tell us more about your team of technical trainers? How many people are in your team, and what do you do?
Together, Nadya and I currently lead a team of over 10 technical trainers, which continues to grow. Our team consists of people with extensive experience in the IT field and former students of Telerik Academy Alpha
who choose to continue their path on the other side of the programs - in the role of a trainer. Each of us has in-depth knowledge of software development, a willingness to share our experience and to put ourselves in the place of the student who is facing a problem for the first time.
As technical trainers, the students' training is only one part of our job. We have other essential responsibilities: preparing materials, tracking students' success, giving constant feedback, and student consulting. The Alpha program is over 800 hours, and leading the sessions is only a small part of it. We spend significant time working with students on real projects and assignments, conducting hackathons, giving feedback, consulting, and preparing personal learning plans. What differentiates our trainers is that they are more than that - they are mentors to our students.
Another aspect of our work is preparing learning content with the Learning Experience Design (LXD) team - recording videos with the theoretical sessions, preparing tasks and hackathons, and planning the students' projects.
What technologies do you use?
Currently, we have Alpha programs
shared Edward Evlogiev, Senior Technical Trainer
What projects are you working on as technical trainers?
: The Academy tech trainers work on two main tracks - preparing Alpha students for a successful career in the IT sector and upgrading and improving the curriculum and its materials.
In addition to the sessions, the technical trainers help the students learn the new material, conduct demo sessions related to the solution of a specific software problem, and support the teams in the programs in the implementation of their practical projects and assignments. We also provide constant feedback to each student, mentor them and prepare individual training plans based on each participant's needs.
We prepare and improve the Alpha programs and the learning materials by expanding them with new topics, practical tasks, presentations and recording additional learning materials. We optimize the programs’ curriculum to follow the dynamic development of the technologies, and we validate it with leading IT companies so that the students receive the knowledge and skills the companies need.
Another crucial project our team is working on is the free programming fundamentals course conducted before every Alpha program. Its focus is on people with zero coding experience, and our goal is to prepare the materials to help them build that fundamental knowledge step by step and discover if programming is for them.
What's your work model now? How often do you go to the office?
: We base our work model on different factors, and the health and comfort of our team and students are our top priority. Even before COVID-19, we had a flexible work policy, which we still apply. The current health situation allows us to work in a hybrid format, and everyone can choose to work from the office or home. Usually, our team agrees on an office day so that they will enjoy social contact in addition to the comforts of the office environment.
“I'm Yasen, and I've been part of the Telerik Academy team for more than a year. My focus is the Alpha C# program. What attracted me to the Academy was the opportunity to share knowledge with ambitious people who want to become part of the programming world while developing my skills in various technologies. The most significant source of motivation for me is my colleagues because, for the first time, I find myself in an environment where everyone feels their work is meaningful and fulfilling. In my free time, I enjoy visiting new places, exploring the urban environment, and watching old movies and series. I also practice different sports, mostly chess, running and football,”
shared Yasen Stoilov, Technical Trainer
What does a typical working day look like as a technical trainer?
: We have a weekly meeting to review, discuss and allocate the current tasks. Each technical trainer's working day is different depending on the assignments. For some trainers, the day includes preparing and conducting training sessions with Alpha students. For others - updating and discussing learning materials. There are also many additional activities when working with the students, like reviewing assignments from individual or team projects, hackathons, mentoring and guidance for their final projects, and conducting meetings if we register that there are students who need additional support and attention. We also participate in selecting the next Alpha students. It is a holistic process, and together with their technical skills, we review their motivation based on their applications. We also get involved in some soft skills elements, such as mock-up interviews.
Which other teams do you work with most often?
: We've mentioned some of them - the soft skills team is one that we work closely with. One example is the aforementioned mock-up interviews. Together with the LXD team, we are working on the program development and design. We also work closely with our product managers, program coordinators and marketing team in conducting admissions campaigns, career events and other types of content. The collaboration between our teams is key to the overall success of our programs and students. The direct connection with the soft skills trainers contributes to tracking the performance of each Alpha student and applying an individual approach based on each participant's needs and learning style.
What makes your team proud?
: We are very proud of our team spirit and work atmosphere. Our goal at Telerik Academy is to help people kickstart careers that positively change their lives. It's a truly inspiring and rewarding goal. The feedback from our partners, leading IT companies that invest in junior talent, is also very pleasing and a source of pride for us.
: We are proud to directly impact Bulgaria's IT industry by developing a well-prepared talent. In 2022 over 93% of our Alpha students start working in the software sector within 6 months of completing our programs. The rest of the students get hired within a year. We are glad that 97% of our alumni stay in Bulgaria and choose to work here.
“Hello, my name is Kiril, and I have been part of Telerik Academy since the end of 2018. My focus during these four years has been mainly on leading, developing and improving our Alpha C# program. Before joining the Academy, I was a software developer for the software company "Telerik" (Progress) team for many years. Teaching has always been a passion of mine, and it was only a matter of time before it happened. I am happy and extremely grateful that the people I have met and with whom I currently work motivate me to improve myself inside and outside work constantly. Nothing virtual is foreign to me, and outside of work, I like to distract myself with games, but also, for some time now, I have been trying to do agricultural farming,”
shared Kiril Stanoev, Senior Technical Trainer
What do you like to do outside work, as a team?
: We often gather and make short trips to the mountains - an activity that brings our team together and gives us another reason to meet outside work. We also love to visit restaurants with cuisine from different parts of the world. And it's always nice to just have a beer at the end of the work day with the team. :)
What brings your team together?
: The strong relationship between us and the mission we have as an organization.
How do you introduce a new employee to the team?
: Every new colleague goes through a structured and individual 6-month onboarding program. It includes working closely with a mentor from the team, a schedule with planned activities and goals, and scheduled meetings where we set aside time to exchange comprehensive feedback on the process so far.
The purpose of onboarding is to give the new employees enough time and freedom to develop experience and confidence in the role. We want them to dive into the deep while feeling safe and supported by the team. Over time, we note that our onboarding program is highly successful and provides a strong foundation for the further development of people in the organization. And growing into a role and advancement of responsibilities is something we regularly see across the team.
“My name is Chavdar, and I have been a technical trainer at Telerik Academy for 6 months now. I went through the intensive Alpha Java program, and upon graduation, I started as an Assistant Technical Trainer at the Academy. Having a structured onboarding process and a mentor helped me feel like a part of the team from the beginning. I am currently leading sessions with students and improving the learning materials. In my free time, I like to run and take walks in the mountains. A favourite moment of my first months at the Academy was a morning hike we did with the team in Vitosha with fantastic view from there,”
shared Chavdar Dimitrov, Technical Trainer
How would you answer the question: "If you are..., welcome to our team!"?
: "passionate about teaching, sharing your experiences and helping others"
: "a person who seeks meaning and satisfaction in your work, likes to share knowledge with others and seeing how with your help enables them to achieve great success"
How would you describe your team?
: Our team is highly efficient, with transparent relationships and communication built on mutual trust. Each of us is passionate about our work which helps keep the overall focus in the right place despite the various daily tasks and challenges. As trainers, we learn from each other because everyone has different experiences in different areas, an essential element for us to be successful in our role. As individuals, we are incredibly colourful, but we are united by shared values - to help people change their lives, as well as our own ambition to grow and learn in the Academy - technologies are evolving, and we and our programs move forward together with them.
Feel like the position of a technical trainer can fit your skills and may be your career path? Apply for our open positions here
or write us at firstname.lastname@example.org