Humans of Andela

Chesvic Hillary, Lagos

Chesvic Hillary
“I’m proud to call myself a global citizen, with the ability to work between time zones depending on the client location around the world.”

Chesvic Hillary is a Senior Back-End Engineer, and this is his story.

He has worked for several Andela clients since he joined the network in 2021, including government organizations and leading internet service providers. Based in Lagos, Nigeria, Chesvic is an experienced technical writer and code instructor, who has mentored junior engineers and helped them develop programming skills, while contributing to complex algorithm logic and architecture migration projects.

An inspirational woman in tech kickstarted my career.

In 2003, just after I graduated from high school, my parents asked me to travel to the local business center to photocopy my college documents. As soon as I arrived, I saw the technology suite was managed by a busy, ultra smart lady.  

Back in the early 2000s, in Nigeria, personal computers weren’t readily available. Microsoft 95 was only just coming into play, and you’d be lucky to have access to a monitor and a keyboard at school. We all used the local business center for any computer services, such as sending emails or typing up an essay.

The manager of the business center blew my mind. She was incredible at management; attending to me, while touch typing, and being a great boss to her employees.

I peeped at a monitor to see what she was doing, and I realized she wasn’t typing words; she was typing code. I was astounded. I forgot about the photocopying and asked if she’d consider taking me on as an intern. She offered to train me in coding and computing during work hours if I helped at the business center.  

I spent a year discovering how to use Excel, PowerPoint, Word, before moving onto more complex coding and graphic design. It was an immersive experience and within those 12 months I became very proficient. Programming with HTML came naturally to me. At the end of the internship, my manager encouraged me to study computer science, suggesting I take a diploma in computing. I passed with flying colors, before considering a BA course in electronics.  

Initially, I thought my parents might oppose my interest in tech, but they saw the positive change in me during my year at the business center. My dad said “Oh, Chesvic is finally becoming responsible thanks to technology!” They couldn’t have been more supportive. I realized my interest didn’t lie in electronics, but in software engineering. So, I majored in computer science, at Lead City University in Nigeria.

I joined the four-year course, but because I already had a technical background thanks to my internship, I sped through the modules. It was a great experience, and I even had the chance to set up a boot camp for tech newbies on how to write code.

I learned something incredibly valuable as a tutor: patience.”

After graduating, I worked in the education industry as a code instructor with a company based in Mumbai, before joining an inventory management company as an associate.

I learned something incredibly valuable as a tutor: patience. Just like my first manager had taken me under her wing, I felt I was giving something back, helping new engineers to learn and embrace technology. I supported them with their admissions to computer science courses at universities, counselled students on ICT and career choices, and delivered Java and JavaScript tutorials.

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It’s around this time that I became interested in technical writing. Sharing knowledge with students was based around one-on-one sessions, or in small groups. I soon realized that topics I was discussing were of great interest, and I could share these thoughts widely if I wrote technical blogs.  

In 2019, I moved into a role at a start-up that was still developing their marketing strategy. Their Facebook page was quite bare, so I thought, why don’t I write about the company? I jotted down the most important aspects about their services and ended up being known as an in-house content writer!  

It was a value-added service outside of my day job and I loved it. I’d drop articles on their social media accounts, get some great feedback, and then write more.  

Writing put me in the eyeline of some of the top managers. They asked “Who is Chesvic? Let’s get him involved in other projects.” One article became a hot trending topic and within two weeks it ranked as the top tech blog on Google. A technology platform reached out and shared the article. It got tens of thousands of views and other technologists contacted me for advice. I realized, “Ok, I’m a decent writer, I can give something back here too.”  

It was around this time, in 2021, that I felt confident enough to apply to join the Andela network. Andela has this vision to nurture quality engineers, and their core values of excellence, commitment, and passion resonated strongly with me.  

In Nigeria, and across Africa, Andela is considered gold standard. The best engineers and developers I knew were accepted by Andela and I thought, “I’m just as good, I can do this!”  

Andela only works with the best companies, so getting accepted is like winning an award. I knew that I could take my career to the next level. And very quickly, I did, with roles at internet service providers and recently at a government-based organization.

Andela has this vision to nurture quality engineers, and their core values of excellence, commitment, and passion resonated strongly with me.”

Your life just automatically improves once you’re in the network. You can get a well-paid job that helps you support your family, working with great people on exciting projects that you learn so much from. What I love about being part of Andela is their support and networking. The community is rich with different people who are willing to engage and share stories and ideas together. Having access to people you can relate to on a particular subject is incredible.

Until I joined Andela, I never thought I could get paid for being a published writer, but they have a community chat platform with different channels, and one day I decided to join one called Writing Opportunities. I discovered Andela’s writing program – Writer’s Room – where they encourage you to write technical articles on selected topics, and work with you to get them published on the Andela website. Above all, you get paid for it. I never thought I’d get the chance to get paid for my writing, but I’ve had several articles published with Andela so far, from topics like Soap, Node.js and even how to manage virtual meetings.  

I think about what advice I needed in the past, and how I can translate my learnings into useful tips that might help my readers. Since I’ve been published on, I’ve had messages from all over the world, from people in the US to Switzerland. I love imagining that whatever articles I’m creating right now might be available forever, to help the next generation of technologists. It’s very cool.  

My wife is my best and fiercest writing critic. We’re happily married, with two young children, a boy, and a girl. She reviews every article I write, and I watch carefully as she reads, knowing within seconds if it’s trash or treasure.  

It’s always great to meet Andela team members and community members. Thanks to Victor Alade, an Andela Alumni and CEO of Raenest, I had the chance to travel to Nairobi recently for the Africa Tech Summit, and met up with some amazing Andelans, like Mike Ndimurukundo, the managing director of Andela Rwanda; Maureen Kamau, an awesome Client Success Partner that connects us with roles; and Patricia Ngetich, Andela’s Program Manager; as well as community members.  

Working for Andela’s clients improved the quality of my life by rightfully compensating my efforts and dedication. My horizons have been broadened and my soft skills have improved. I’m proud to call myself a global citizen, with the ability to work and adjust between time zones depending on the client location around the world.

In the next few years, my goal is to upskill and work my way into a Software Architect role, while developing my writing and getting more articles published. Whatever knowledge I gain, I want to be able to share that with other people. And I know that as I progress, Andela will be there to support me.

Connect with Chesvic on LinkedIn and read more of his work on

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