Applying to the Recurse Center: Things I Wish I Knew Beforehand


The Recurse Center application process is well-documented and implemented well. However there were some undocumented details I wish I had been aware of before applying. These are notes for myself before I re-apply. It may help other hopeful Recursers, too~

Written Application

  • The text area form inputs are automatically linkified.
  • Markdown formatting is not supported and probably better to avoid.
  • You may view/edit your application after submitting.
  • Keep a log of "fascinating things" if you have trouble remembering, like me. (Or pick an "evergreen" thing.)

The Conversational Interview

Some questions I was not prepared for:
  • Describe a time you had trouble programming.
  • How did you overcome it?
  • What is your greatest programming strength?
  • What is your greatest programming weakness?
  • Describe the ideal fellow Recurse batch member; someone you'd want to pair program with.

The Pairing Interview

  • For some reason Zoom screen sharing introduced a lag where there was a significant delay between when I entered a key and VS code responded. I should figure out how to remove this delay or get used to it.
  • I imagined my interviewer using a laptop, so I was afraid the resolution of my 30 inch monitor would be too hard for the interviewer to see. However 2560x1140@125% resolution was OK, and 100% scaling might even be OK.
  • If the interviewer asks you to run the code for them, it's just to confirm the code is actually working. Probably no deep explanation needed.
  • The RC instructions say "Remember you will need some extra time to acquaint your interviewer with your code," but my interviewer told to me to just start coding right away; skip the introduction assuming he had already read the code I had submitted.
  • After the pair coding session was done I was asked some questions I wasn't prepared for:
    • What do you like about your code?
    • What don't you like about your code?


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