How NET/WORK helped this new developer get a job at Tonic Design Co. - Technical.ly Philly

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Feb. 22, 2016 12:21 pm

How NET/WORK helped this new developer get a job at Tonic Design Co.

One attendee from our 2014 career fair shares his success story. The 2016 edition is Tuesday.
Stanley Griggs II, NET/WORK attendee-turned-junior developer at Tonic Design.

Stanley Griggs II, NET/WORK attendee-turned-junior developer at Tonic Design.

(Courtesy photo)

Job hunting can be brutal.

In 2014, Philly native Stanley Griggs II decided to pursue a career in web development and bought a ticket to NET/WORK Philly. Not sure of the outcomes, Griggs put on his game face and opted to make the best of the job fair. Two years later, he’s a junior developer at Tonic Design Co., a web agency in Philadelphia known for leading successful apprenticeship programs for up-and-coming dev talent.

Below, Griggs walks us through his experience as a NET/WORK attendee who is now thriving at one of Philadelphia’s top 100 companies.

The 2016 edition of NET/WORK Philly is tomorrow, Feb. 23, at the Fillmore. More than 70 local tech organizations will be there looking for talent. Maybe you’ll be this story in 2018.

Get tickets ($10)

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Walk me through your experience as a NET/WORK attendee. Did you have an agenda for who to meet and network with, or what companies interested you most?

I did have a few local companies such as Curalate and RJMetrics that I knew I’d be interested in working with, in any capacity. This job fair was my last hurrah. If nothing came of it, I was going to sign up for Dev Bootcamp and go wherever the wind took me, even if it meant leaving Philly.

Tell me what resulted after you attended NET/WORK? How did the Tonic hire come about? Who else did you connect with?

I didn’t see the Tonic Design Co. — DmgCTRL at that time — table, as they were in an obscure corner. I’d already made my rounds and was a little stressed out. Luckily, NET/WORK had a coffee bar where I met Catherine Enck, who was wearing a DmgCTRL embroidered t-shirt. I started a conversation with her, and learned that DmgCTRL worked in software. I explained that I was gearing up to take a leap of faith and join dev school, at which point she let me know that teaching was a core part of her company’s identity.

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"Without NET/WORK and that coffee bar, I would never have met Catherine, who opened the door and helped me to begin my journey at Tonic."
Stanley Griggs II

A few weeks later, I met with one of the partners, Jason Allum, who said I could hang at the office whenever I wanted. The pivotal moment for me was right after that meeting. I didn’t go home — I found a desk and did Codecademy work for the remainder of the day. Whenever I got stuck, I’d ask one of the developers for help. I showed up every day for 2 months, and eventually joined their paid apprenticeship program.

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In January of 2015, Griggs was promoted to junior software developer at Tonic, working with some of the world’s biggest brands.

Meet Tonic Design Co., and 70+ other hiring organizations at #networkphl16. Ten bucks gets you HubBub coffee, new professional head shots, resume reviews, professional development sessions and beer.

See new jobs in your tech community
Companies: Tonic Design
People: Jason Allum
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