I work as a usability consultant with a startup in Bangalore. Prior to that I was a tech writer and customer/tech support professional. Though I have a graduate degree in Computer Science, programming was not my forte.
During my technical writing gig, I realized that I wanted to more about users and their behaviors. Looking around online and speaking to few experienced UX professionals, I found that my liking was towards UX research. In India, there aren't any HCI graduate programs.
During my technical writing gig, I completed the four courses from HCI and also networked with experienced professionals. A senior UX professional from Bangalore, was very generous with his time and expertise and helped me a lot by introducing me to few of his contacts in Bangalore. Then, I took a risk by leaving my technical writing gig, and cleared the Certified Usability Analyst exam from HFI within a month. Soon after that, I landed my first UX gig at a design firm and then over the period of next few months, I did few short-term consulting gigs in usability testing. Currently, I currently conduct user testing studies with general physicians for our Electronic Medical Record (EMR) solution.
I have been fortunate to been in touch with many experienced UX professionals who shared their expertise. My primary mode of learning is reading books (print, pdfs, and now of late, kindle books) and attending courses on Udemy. I also have a blog where I share my thoughts on healthcare.
It's great being in UX because every person that we meet is different and based on the specific context, the person's behavior really varies. I really love learning, questioning, and analyzing. It is great to be in this field. Meeting people and getting to know their perspectives makes all the difference for knowing their mental models. Matt from UXmastery has been patiently answering my newbie questions on UX and is quick to respond.
Hats off to Matt and Luke for building this awesome UX community!