Curating an Education

How I forged a career without a degree

July 5, 2023 • 2 min read

At 16 years old, I left my parents in Benton, Arkansas, to attend a public residential high school about 40 minutes away in Hot Springs called the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts. The school is actually part of the University of Arkansas System, so all of the classes that I attended on campus were worth college credit and taught by college professors.

For a while, I considered applying to out-of-state schools with big reputations, but the financial reality of those dreams set in during my senior year. I settled for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock (UALR), and even with tuition and board fully covered by scholarships, I found myself working odd jobs or internships nearly full-time to be able to afford food, clothing, and other essentials.

On top of that, I wasn't satisfied with the quality of the computer science curriculum and instructors at UALR, so I spent a lot of time trying to find better teachers online. After poring over some of the resources below every day between classes and work, I was incredibly lucky to land my first job at Apptegy as a software engineer just a few months after my 20th birthday. I actually didn't formally withdraw from UALR until August of that year just in case things didn't work out! But I've been working in the industry ever since.

All that said, I thought I'd share some of those resources that I've collected over the years, as a bookmark for myself and for anyone else who wants to learn more about programming and computer science. For all of these resources, I would also recommend reading the documentation for whatever language, framework, or tool you're interested in using, as well as applying what you learn to your own projects.

Note: This list is updated occasionally.


freeCodeCamp (freecodecamp.org, free)

LinkedIn Learning (linkedin.com/learning, paid)

YouTube (youtube.com, free)

Udemy (udemy.com, paid)

Coursera (coursera.org, free + paid)

Codecademy (codecademy.com, free + paid)

Zero to Mastery (zerotomastery.io, paid)

Project-Based Learning (github.com/practical-tutorials/project-based-learning, free)

Programming Languages and Web Development


Frontend Masters (frontendmasters.com, paid)

Stephen Grider (udemy.com/user/sgslo, paid)

Three.js Journey (threejs-journey.com, paid)


Code with Mosh (codewithmosh.com/courses, paid)

Learn ASP.NET Core MVC (youtube.com/watch?v=hZ1DASYd9rk, free)

ASP.NET Core Crash Course (youtube.com/watch?v=BfEjDD8mWYg, free)


Gophercises (gophercises.com, free)

Trevor Sawler (udemy.com/user/trevor-sawler, paid)

Writing an Interpreter in Go (interpreterbook.com, paid)

Writing a Compiler in Go (compilerbook.com, paid)


testdriven.io (testdriven.io, free + paid)

Jose Portilla (udemy.com/user/joseportilla, paid)

Frank Kane (udemy.com/user/frank-kane-2, paid)


Laracasts (laracasts.com, paid)


The Pragmatic Studio (pragmaticstudio.com, paid)

Upcase by thoughtbot (thoughtbot.com/upcase/practice, free)

Hello Rails (hellorails.io, paid)

Learn Enough (learnenough.com/courses, paid)


The Pragmatic Studio (pragmaticstudio.com, paid)

Stephen Grider (udemy.com/user/sgslo, paid)


Rust Programming: The Complete Developer's Guide (zerotomastery.io/courses/learn-rust, paid)

Zero To Production In Rust (zero2prod.com, paid)

SQL & Data

DataLemur (datalemur.com, free + paid)

Stephen Grider (udemy.com/user/sgslo, paid)

Data Engineering Study Guide (Link to Google Sheet, free)

Alex the Analyst (youtube.com/@AlexTheAnalyst, free)

Creative Coding

SuperHi (superhi.com, paid)

hbyhadeel (youtube.com/channel/UC1S-SVSaZ5a1ZgHxvKnQIOQ, free)

The Coding Train (youtube.com/channel/UCvjgXvBlbQiydffZU7m1_aw, free)

Three.js Journey (threejs-journey.com, paid)

Gorilla Sun (gorillasun.de, free)

C++, Graphics, and Game Development

Pikuma (pikuma.com, free + paid)

GameDev.tv (udemy.com/user/gamedevtv, paid)

The Cherno (youtube.com/@TheCherno, free)

Just Dev Tutorials (youtube.com/@justdevtutorials, free)

tinyrenderer (github.com/ssloy/tinyrenderer, free)

Three.js Journey (threejs-journey.com, paid)


Catlike Coding (catlikecoding.com/unity/tutorials, free)

Code Monkey (youtube.com/channel/UCFK6NCbuCIVzA6Yj1G_ZqCg, free)

Penny de Byl (udemy.com/user/holistic3d, paid)

James Doyle (udemy.com/user/james-doyle-4, paid)

Jason Weimann (youtube.com/channel/UCX_b3NNQN5bzExm-22-NVVg, free)

Brackeys (youtube.com/channel/UCYbK_tjZ2OrIZFBvU6CCMiA, free)


Tom Looman (tomlooman.com, free + paid)

Computer Science & Interview Prep

CS Primer (csprimer.com, paid)

Destroy All Software (destroyallsoftware.com, paid)

Writing an Interpreter in Go (interpreterbook.com, paid)

Writing a Compiler in Go (compilerbook.com, paid)

Nand to Tetris (nand2tetris.org, free + paid)

Design Gurus (designgurus.io/courses, paid)

Data Structures + Algorithms (zerotomastery.io/courses/learn-data-structures-and-algorithms, paid)

Big Tech (FAANG) Interviews (zerotomastery.io/courses/faang-interview-prep, paid)

System Design + Architecture (zerotomastery.io/courses/system-design, paid)

Codewars (codewars.com, free)

Grind 75 (techinterviewhandbook.org/grind75, free)