Find Mentors pattern is about asking for help while exploring the unknown. Every time we decide to take a new path – learn a new language, we do not know what is in store for us and therefore have no clue as to how deal with problems that we might face. The pattern recognizes that as new apprentice we will need help facing these problems and in reaching our goal.
The solution pattern provides is to learn under a master craftsman in the field of your choosing – a mentor. The pattern also realizes that as a novice it is difficult to identify a true master craftsman and therefore during the process of acquiring the new skill we will be guided by a number of mentors with diverse levels of mastery. The pattern states that it might be easy to find authors, bloggers, professional speakers, and developers in computer science field. However, there are two problems; first, they might not be interested in mentoring; Second, asking someone to be your mentor can be very intimidating. The important point pattern makes here is to have determination and remember that the risk of rejection is very low compared to huge opportunities having a mentor can provide.
The pattern also warns us about blindly following someone. We need to keep our eyes open to the mentor’s weakness and resist the temptation to believe everything they say. No one knows everything about everything. Therefore, we need to keep finding other master craftsman and keep polishing our skills.
Why I choose this?
Computer science is a very difficult field to begin with and then on top of it – it is an ever-evolving field. The amount of knowledge available is immeasurable. The pattern ‘Reading List’ helps us organize the books we need to read, which as we all know does not give practical explanation, real world connections or real time feedback. Moreover, to start our reading list and even to make sure that we are reading the correct books – we need to find someone we can trust – someone like a mentor.
Over the last four years I have been able to find a number of mentors. They have ranged from professors to my peers, family and friends to people in slack and discord communities. It has been an amazing experience. I have learned from them and with them.