Hi, my name is Gilad Reich and I live in Berlin, Germany. I’m an experienced software developer and hardware enthusiast. In this portfolio I share with you my professional skills, projects I’ve been working on, hobbies and interests; feel free to click around and I hope you enjoy your stay!
I consider myself a curious person who likes to know how things work in depth. From a young age, I used to take apart almost every gadget around me, even though my parents would get upset with me - for this sometimes led to irreparable damage - they were equally proud in noticing this curiosity. Growing up I started to be the person who fixes everything for people around me; computers, tablets, phones and almost any kind of device that I was introduced to. This was likely influenced in watching my father from a young age do soldering work and fixing the gadgets we had at home.
Having grown up in a small town in Israel, created a very strong connection in me towards nature. There were about 30 to 50 families in our town at the time and not many people around my age. Walking outside, all you can hear is the sound of the birds, rattling tree leaves which at times would be carried by the strong winds. Periodically I would wake up at 3am to the sound of the clucking chickens in our garden.
Despite my love for technology; my strong connection to nature coupled with my love for biology, lead me to think of completing my higher education in biology and later pressure a career in research. As I already had friends and family living in Boston, U.S; I had set my sights on studying there after finishing my army service from ages 18 to 21. At age 21 I moved to Herzliya, Israel where I worked as a waiter at a 4-star restaurant, Sebastian. I worked double shifts during my two and a half years there, saving up as much as possible whilst also preparing to study for American university entrance exams (SATS and Toefel). These years gave me some of the best experiences of my life.
At age 23, I felt ready for the next chapter, and as planned went to visit universities in Boston in order to choose the best fit for me. I was hosted by my brother and his supportive family, sometimes staying in downtown Boston where my friends who studied there lived. During my three months in Boston, I got to see how students live, visited universities (their pros and cons) and experienced the harsh Boston winter. I began to question if this was in fact the right choice for me, in spite having carried this dream to study biology for as long as I could remember.
I always knew that I have a natural talent for computers and technology, but I was concerned doing my main hobby as a profession. I began to realize that it would give me the opportunity to take my passion to the next level. After understanding the difficulties of living as a student in the U.S., I began to consider moving to Germany, not only because I am partly German, but also because it has a lot to offer and I was excited about the opportunities studying there would provide.
Moving to Germany wasn’t the easiest transition. Studying in German universities requires having at least C1 language level in CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) to get accepted. Depending on the kind of system, getting to C1 level could take around two to three years of German courses. Once I reached a B1 level, I decided I wanted to start working and begin my education path. This was made possible as Germany has a system called Ausbildung, which also provides a work/study program. I did three years training where I worked as a Software developer at an innovative company called [j]Karef GmbH. I simultaneously went to classes, going one week to school and two weeks to work.
The first year at school was one of the most difficult years I’ve had. I was surprised to be the only non-native speaker in class which meant that the speed was quite challenging. Fortunately, I already had some experience in programming and computer science which helped in those subjects, however due to the language barrier I struggled with German economics and law. Thanks to the unwavering encouragement of my teachers who believed in me from the beginning, along with the support of everyone at [j]Karef GmbH, in February 2019 I graduated as a specialized computer scientist in Software Development.