Published on

From Apple Retail to Remote Web Development: My Journey

907 words5 min read
  • avatar
    Curtis Warcup

Hi, I’m Curtis Warcup, a web developer based in rainy Vancouver, BC. My journey into web development is a bit unconventional, but it’s one that has been filled with learning, growth, and excitement. I want to share my story of transitioning from a retail job at Apple to becoming a remote web developer at 14 Oranges.

My Apple Journey

I started my career at Apple as a part-time sales person while I was still in university. Over the next seven years, I climbed the ranks, eventually becoming an associate manager. My time at Apple was an incredible learning experience. I oversaw product launches, conducted training sessions, and led a team of over 100 employees.

Working at Apple taught me a lot about customer service, problem-solving, and teamwork. I met dozens of new people every day, which was often a sensory overload, but I thrived in that environment. I loved helping customers, solving their problems, and ensuring they left the store satisfied.

The Spark for Web Development

The catalyst for my career change came from my wife, who worked in engineering at a startup. She suggested that I learn something new while she was away for a month. Intrigued by the idea, I started teaching myself web development. I found the process of creating something from scratch incredibly rewarding. After eight months of self-learning, I decided to make a career change.

Bootcamp Experience

To get serious about becoming a developer, I enrolled in a 12-week bootcamp at Lighthouse Labs. The bootcamp was intense but incredibly rewarding. I learned the fundamentals of full-stack web development and got hands-on experience building projects. The bootcamp provided a structured learning environment and a supportive community, which was crucial for my transition.

Transition to Remote Web Development

After the bootcamp, I landed a job as a web developer at 14 Oranges, a company specializing in agency work. Transitioning to remote work was a significant change from my previous role at Apple. At Apple, I was constantly interacting with people face-to-face. Remote work, on the other hand, felt a bit lonely initially. I missed the daily human interactions and the buzz of the store.

However, working remotely also had its advantages. I have my two dogs and my wife, who also works from home, to keep me company. Over time, I formed strong friendships with my co-workers through virtual interactions. At the end of a workday, I often wind down by chatting with a co-worker about the projects we are working on and the issues we’ve been bumping into. These conversations have become a cherished part of my routine.

Growth and Learning

At 14 Oranges, I’ve had the opportunity to manage large projects from start to finish. It’s nerve-wracking to know that the code I’ve written is live and accepting hundreds of online orders every day. But it’s also incredibly fulfilling. I specialize in building responsive and accessible web applications, often collaborating directly with clients from diverse industries, including healthcare. Breaking down complex technical concepts into easily understandable terms has become one of my strengths, ensuring client satisfaction and fostering strong working relationships.

Handling Ambiguity

One of the most valuable skills I learned at Apple was handling ambiguity. In my role as a manager, I often had to make quick decisions in the face of unclear solutions. This experience has been invaluable in my current role. Managing projects means navigating through uncertainties, and my ability to innovate and come up with solutions on the fly has been a critical asset.

Looking Ahead

I’m passionate about health and wellness, a passion that stems from my background in Kinesiology. This interest drives my enthusiasm for creating impactful solutions in the healthcare sector. The future of digital health excites me, and I look forward to contributing to projects that make a real difference in people’s lives.

I’m also eager to continue growing as a developer. I hold myself to a high standard and am always looking for new opportunities to learn and improve. Being part of a startup and a growing team, where I can learn from more experienced developers, is something I’m looking forward to.


My journey from Apple retail to remote web development has been filled with learning and growth. While the transition was challenging, it has been incredibly rewarding. I’ve found a career that I’m passionate about, and I’m excited about what the future holds. If you’re considering a career change or looking to learn something new, my advice is to dive in and embrace the journey. You never know where it might take you.

Thank you for reading about my journey. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or just want to connect!