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This Coding School Is Offering Scholarships To Women Who Want …

To encourage more women to become developers, coding school Dev Bootcamp will offer $2,500 scholarship to 10 women from the organization Girl Develop It.

Coinciding with International Women’s Day on Saturday, March 8, the organizations plan to formally announce the scholarships from Dev Bootcamp’s New York City location during the We Code Unconference. The scholarships will be available to active members of Girl Develop It, an organization that aims to provide women with affordable programs to learn software development. The scholarships, which will offset the $12,200 tuition, can be used at Dev Bootcamp’s San Francisco, New York City, or Chicago locations. Dev Bootcamp also has a partnership with female-focused career startup Levo League, offering $2,500 to Levo Scholars.

“Women are wildly underrepresented in the software engineering industry and as ‘learning to code’ goes mainstream the world will be considerably worse off without adequate female representation,” Dev Bootcamp’s New York City director Lloyd Nimetz told Fast Company. “Girl Develop It is one of the most respected protagonists working to achieve gender parity in software, and we’re really excited for what we can do together this year.”

The world of hack schools is often unregulated, and Dev Bootcamp is one of seven schools that received citation letters from a regulatory agency in California in January. The school says it is working with the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education to become a licensed learning institution in the state.

Web Developer Instructor All Levels Need | StartUpers

Role
The role of a Web Developer Instructor is to help a small group of students that have low to medium technical skills who wish to get a good basic understanding of Web Development, MVC and the like.

The job is to assist students with questions and feedback, when they are building there application. We have students spend the first half of the day going over a tutorial and meeting with a mentors, the second they work on build an application (that is done over the course of their time at Coding House)

Skills & Requirements
Your Skill’s should include the 70% or more of these languages and frameworks (if you don’t know everything that’s okay!)

↣ HTML 5
↣ CSS 3
↣ Haml
↣ Sass
↣ Coffee Script
↣ JavaScript
↣ JQuery
↣ Node.JS
↣ Backbone
↣ PHP
↣ SQL
↣ Ruby
↣ Rails
↣ NoSQ

Overview
Coding House is a Software Development Boot Camp. We have two primary offerings a 60 day Full Immersion course where students live in a house with their instructor and all of their needs are met so they can focus on learning how to code. The second is a six-month Nights and Weekends course that mostly done online.

We have mentors that are thought leaders, Keynote speakers and award-winning published authors when it comes to computer programming. Some of our partners include AT&T offering scholarships to our program.

More info here: http://codinghouse.co/about-students

Compensation  
65K to 140K depending on your skills. We also offer (if you desire) a free place to stay along with a personal trainer and 3 meal a days.

Make a difference
We are teaching people skills that matter. We are fixing a broken education system process by building outstanding curriculum that can be taught in months as opposed to years. Our solution will help many young people become better software developers in a shorter amount of time. The students will thank you for making archaic process suck 1000 times less. Your work will matter.

Vision
Coding House is an full immersion crash course in software development where all distractions are muted. We have a full immersion and nights and weekends program. We bring in the best breed of software developers in Silicon Valley to guide and instruct the students. Our goal is to mentor 1000 strong full stack developers over the next 5 years through interactive hands-on training.

Team
Work with talented people to tackle big problems. Our team is continuously pushing out instruction material and innovative processes. We brainstorm nonstop, work hard together and laugh a lot. This is a team that you’ll be excited to work with everyday. Flat team structure, we work together and you have influence over what we build and teach.

 

Y Combinator Backs Its Next Nonprofit, Coding Education Program …


CodeNow is announcing that it has joined incubator Y Combinator — move that founder and CEO Ryan Seashore said will help with the programming education nonprofit’s ambitious plans for growth.

CodeNow aims to teach programming basics to high schoolers, particularly girls, ethnic minorities, and other underrepresented groups. It launched in Washington, D.C. in 2011 before expanding to New York City and San Francisco last year.

The program’s approach combines weekend sessions, online coursework, and an intensive boot camp conducted over longer school breaks. Seashore said the question he’s been asking himself, and one that’s been amplified by joining YC, is, “How do you make in-person training scale?”

The answer, or at least the one that Seashore plans to pursue, is not abandoning the in-person aspect of the program. However, he noted that CodeNow has been limiting its class size to 30 students at most. A new approach, which the classes have already begun to adopt, is bringing more students in but dividing them into groups of six to eight. Each of those groups will work with their own volunteer trainer, and they’ll move at their own pace.

In addition, Seashore said he’s developing the curriculum for “CodeNow in a Box,” which would basically allow companies and other organizations to partner with CodeNow, offering classes with their own staff but using the CodeNow curriculum. He said he hasn’t made any agreement yet, but companies have expressed interest.

“This is how we start scaling,” Seashore said, and he credited YC for “pushing me out of my comfort zone and making me think bigger.” He added, “We’re really looking to go from hundreds of kids to hundreds of thousands of kids.”

You may recall that YC announced that it had backed its first nonprofit, Watsi, a little more than a year ago. Then in the fall, the incubator said that it was ready to accept more nonprofits. (The money it puts in is supposed to be a donation, giving it no financial stake in these organizations.)

There are several other nonprofits in the current batch of YC startups, Seashore said. He also noted that even though he’s in Mountain View for YC, and even though he sees the San Francisco Bay Area as an important market for CodeNow, the nonprofit will still be headquartered in New York. That makes it YC’s first New York-based nonprofit.

[student post] App Ideas for Bootcamp 4 – the {c}0dEd

 

1. App which allows companies to trade contractors/employees.

2. App that gym members can use to keep up with daily exercises from their trainers

3. App which can simplify the aggregation of medical records, with a few clicks, and provide relevant tips for pursuing treatment/check-ups

4. App that allows employees to check-in before they are late in a fashion that helps management keep things moving

5. App which allows users to drop tips about locations and lock them, so that other users must pay a fee to get the information. Each geo-tip is  ranked by how valuable it actually is (based on reviews of people who purchased the geo-tip).

6. App which allows you to convert a certain group of friends’ Facebook profile and timelines into printable Yearbook.

7. App which allows people to bet on Kickstarter campaigns reaching their goals (would have to be for New Jersians where online gambling is legal).

8. App which helps people take the {c}0dEd and learn to code at home. (I will personally help sell this product ;) )

9. App for artists to create ads from Instagram pictures w/ customization features in a way that exposes their content to advertisers & consumers via social media to earn revenue from link revenue sharing. (Harder app to build)

10. App for betting on music trivia knowledge or other small wagers between friends.

 

-Mike

Why Coding Bootcamps Should Be Regulated – ReadWrite

Learn to code bootcamps are all the rage these days. Hundreds are cropping up across the world, and that number continues to grow. As these schools become popular among job seekers and students, government regulators are cracking down on programs to make sure they comply with state law.

Coding bootcamps are nine-to-12-week programs that cost upwards of $12,000 and promise students a high-paying job in the programming field.


Dev Bootcamp, one of the original learn to code camps, boasts over 450 graduates since February 2012. Eighty-five percent of the alumni are now employed, Dev Bootcamp’s Brandon Croke told me. Those numbers are rosy in comparison to the average American university, where just 27 percent of graduates have a job related to their major.

A handful of these schools call San Francisco home—Hack Reactor, Dev Bootcamp, General Assembly, and Hackbright Acadmemy, just to name a few. When California’s Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE) discovered these institutions were offering courses without complying to state regulations, the BPPE sent cease and desist letters to the organizations, citing a $50,000 fine if they did not comply with California’s regulations. 

Canadian coding bootcamps have faced their own scrutiny from government regulators. Though code camp supporters claimed that officials were “stifling” innovation in business, the program in question relented, setting a precedent those in the United States should follow.

Avoid A Rush To Judgement 

The immediate reaction to any government oversight in the technology field is skepticism. However, with a rising number of coding bootcamps promising $90,000 a year jobs after a few short months of training, the potential for organizers to take advantage of the system grows—a potential that could prove detrimental for both students and honest coding camps.

Christina Valdivia, BPPE’s information officer, told me that the $50,000 fine would only be implemented if the schools failed to comply with state regulations. The letters were sent at the beginning of February, and most of the California coding camps have begun working toward compliance to avoid a fine.

To achieve compliance, institutions must pay a $5,000 application fee; provide a course catalog, enrollment agreement, and performance fact sheet publicly on their websites; and submit a few other minor documents included on the application. In this aspect, code schools are really not all that different from any other vocational school that teaches students skills for a particular field. Contrary to other reports, coding camps are not required to have a functioning fax machine on-site.

“Part of the reason they have to do these performance fact sheets is to make sure they’re telling the truth that their claims are accurate,” Valdiva said in an interview. “Whether it’s an auto repair school or cosmetic school, they have to complete the performance fact sheet.” 

Detractors claim that the amount of work it will take to continuously submit an updated the course catalog will prove challenging, as these code camps change curriculum regularly to fit the job market. But, Valdiva told me, they would only have to resubmit an application if the organization drastically changed course.

“If, for instance, the learn to code school plans on changing the curriculum to, let’s say, teach a completely different subject matter like auto repair, then, the new curriculum would have to be submitted for approval by the bureau,” she said.   

A Potential For Fraud

The majority of people who apply to code camps don’t get accepted. At Dev Bootcamp, classes are whittled down from 6,000 applicants to around 20 per cohort; and Hackbright Academy, the female-only program, accepts just five percent of applicants.

That leaves a huge amount of potential students on the table willing to pay thousands for a few months of programming practice.

Kathryn Exline, a Dev Bootcamp graduate who successfully landed a programming job at a food technology startup in Chicago, said that maintaining high-quality programs is important to future success of all coding camps.

“As more and more pop up, alumni and people running the organization are often in support of the regulation to make sure all bootcamps are having good experiences,” Exline told me. “We want to make sure someone doesn’t ruin our reputation.”

Startup accelerators, another byproduct of the startup scene, have suffered from faulty programs in their own community, resulting in entrepreneurs getting left in the cold, various cases of fraud and scandal, and the over-ambitious creation of too many programs.  

Programmers themselves are skeptical of coding bootcamps. Dan Gailey, a self-proclaimed hacker, called code camps a scam, claiming the programs don’t teach adequate skills to become a full-fledged programmer and that the engineering interview helps developers fake their way through job applications.

There is a dearth of developers, management and recruiters commoditize them, they have a high churn rate, and they face even higher burnout. This situation creates a business that takes advantage of two markets. This will inevitably turn out lower quality individuals, while trying to maximize profits.

While this negative take was immediately rebuffed by graduates themselves, other programmers who have been through coding camps don’t find the experience valuable. 

As more programs become available, the actual educational payoff becomes watered down. In Australia, “The Fitzroy Academy Of Getting Shit Done” promises to turn you into an entrepreneur in just four weeks, and although you don’t need programming experience, part of the curriculum includes building an application. While the cost is just a measly $1,000—inexpensive compared to other programs discussed in this article—the claims are similar to the empowering promise of a well-paying job. 

It’s Not About The Money—Or Is It?

Like college, code camp tuition is a concern that turns away many potential students. Free or inexpensive online educational programs continue to crop up to help level the playing field, some of which offer coding classes of their own

Exline said that in the future, these bootcamps should be made available to a larger audience—not just those who can pay. 

“What I would like to see moving forward is bootcamps made somewhat more accessible than higher educational programs; there aren’t facilities for financial aid,” she told me. “If we’re going to have bootcamps a part of our ecosystem, we are going to have to address that aspect of it. How can we make this accessible for everyone?”


Government oversight could play a role in providing financial aid, similar to the structure of public colleges, vocational schools and universities. In addition to keeping postsecondary institutions honest, the BPPE provides a student tuition recovery fund to accredited schools. 

“If [a code camp] suddenly out of the blue shut down, there is recourse for the student to get tuition recovered,” Valdivia said. “When a school isn’t approved, the students don’t have access to those funds.”

As the number of learn to code programs increases, so does the number of graduates. Eventually, the market will become saturated, resulting in a decrease in the average rate of hiring and the average graduate’s salary. The scenario is undoubtedly far down the road, but one that would inevitably drive the cost of admission down as well. 

Some Research Required

It falls on the shoulders of students to do their due diligence when applying to coding programs. The government can provide as much oversight as possible, but ultimately, it’s the responsibility of students to figure out what’s right for them. 


There are a handful of resources for students to rate and read reviews of coding camps, though the forums are still relatively new. Thanks to social media, unsavory experiences are publicly called out. 

Regulation, while seemingly nefarious, aims to protect students. And that’s a creed any postsecondary institution should put above all else. 

“I think anyone can learn to code, but bootcamps aren’t the style for everyone,” Exline said. “For some people, more traditional higher ed will work, for some, learning on your own will work. But what I’ve been able to accomplish in the past year with Dev Bootcamp probably would have taken me three to five years.” 

Lead image courtesy HackNY on Flickr. 

Boom or bust: The lowdown on code academies | JavaWorld

Located on the top floor of a five-story brick building in the heart of San Francisco’s downscale Tenderloin district, Hack Reactor is as far removed from the ivy-clad walls and rolling lawns of top-tier universities as you’re likely to get.

On any given day, the school’s single “classroom” is hot, cramped, and buzzing with activity. Dozens of instructors and students sit cheek to jowl in front of 40-inch monitors set up on rows of conference room tables. They are learning how to code in JavaScript. Fluorescent lights and ventilation ducts hang from the ceiling, and the exposed brick walls make it look more like a not-quite-converted warehouse than an elite learning institution.

But Hack Reactor shares two common traits with other top schools. First, it’s incredibly selective about whom it allows in; only one out of every 30 applicants is accepted, says co-founder Shawn Drost. Second, high-tech companies are scrambling to hire its graduates.

Famo.us, creators of a 3D JavaScript rendering engine for the Web, partnered with Hack Reactor to host teams of students who build their final projects using the Famo.us platform. CEO Steve Newcomb says these academies are a great way to identify programming talent, but Hack Reactor is “the Harvard of them all.”

Hack Reactor aims to provide a “computer science degree for the 21st century,” says Drost, a former software engineer at dating site OkCupid who co-founded the school along with language instructor Tony Philips and his brother Marcus Phillips, a former senior software engineer at Twitter.

Photographs of recent grads, all of whom are now employed by Bay Area tech companies, line a whiteboard on one wall. Hack Reactor offers no guarantees of employment after graduation, but so far it hasn’t needed to. Of the 80 students who completed Hack Reactor’s first four sessions, says Drost, all but one has snagged a job in Silicon Valley’s intensely competitive environment, garnering an average salary of $110,000.

The academies: Filling the coding void

The reason these schools exist is simple. There’s an enormous number of openings for people with coding skills and a serious shortage of warm bodies to fill them. The 40,000-odd students who graduate each year with four-year computer science degrees are only a fraction of the 1.4 million coders the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts will be needed by 2020.

“At last count there are nearly five job openings for every developer, and unemployment rate in this field is under 3 percent,” notes Bethany Marzewski, marketing coordinator for developer job site Stack Overflow Careers 2.0.

In a world where there are four times as many openings for programmers as there are qualified people to fill them, coding schools like Hack Reactor — as well as General Assembly, The Starter League, Dev BootCamp, The Flatiron School, Hackbright Academy, and dozens of others — have stepped in to fill the void.

For fees typically ranging from $1,000 to $1,500 a week, students can enroll in intensive 8- to 16-week courses on topics such as JavaScript, Ruby on Rails, Python, or iOS programming. At the end of their terms, many graduates can expect to receive high-paying job offers from both startups and well-established tech firms. Depending on the academy, students may get a partial refund of their tuition, which the schools more than make up for by collecting a finder’s fee from the employer. Some schools claim to place more than 90 percent of their graduates within three months.

Little wonder, then, that these schools — known variously as code academies, hacker dojos, or programming boot camps — have been sprouting up like mushrooms after a deluge. But opinions about these institutions, most of which did not exist before 2011, are sharply divided.

For some tech companies, these programs offer a way to quickly find desperately needed talent without struggling with H-1B visas or protracted college recruitment programs. Other employers and recruiters, however, steer a wide path around them, saying a three-month course cannot possibly provide the engineering fundamentals required for being a productive member of a development team.

“Programming boot camps can’t serve as a substitute for formal training or real-world experience,” says Jon LeBlanc, head of developer evangelism at PayPal. “If you want to advance in your career, you need to have a complete understanding of languages and concepts that is developed far beyond the limits of a 12-week course.”

Recently, these schools have come under fire from state regulators as well. In January, California’s Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education sent cease-and-desist letters to Hack Reactor, Hackbright, and several other popular academies, demanding they come into compliance with state laws regarding vocational education or risk being shut down.

The students: Jump-starting a career change

A wide variety of students are attracted to these kinds of programs, says Adam Enbar, co-founder of The Flatiron School in New York City, which offers 12-week programs in iOS and Ruby. Some are experienced programmers who want to master a new skill set. Some work in nontechnical jobs and want to add coding skills to make them more valuable to their current employers. Some are entrepreneurs who want to build their own products.

But the majority of enrollees at code schools tend to have little or no programming experience; for them, these boot camps are the fastest way to jump-start a career change.

Baylee Feore is one of the latter. After she graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with multiple degrees in business and public policy and international studies, she went to work as a management consultant for Booz & Co. in New York City.

After two and a half years, though, Feore felt it was time for a change, so she moved 3,000 miles to San Francisco to enroll in General Assembly, one of the larger coding academies with schools in nine locations worldwide. For three months Feore learned the principles of Rails, logging 70 hours a week in class time and project work. Despite the fact she had no programming experience prior to attending General Assembly, within two weeks of graduating last August Feore had a job with Yeti, a small mobile and Web apps development and design shop in San Francisco.

“The biggest reason was I wanted to make things,” she says. “And I really love tech. I know a lot of people who want jobs with startups because they like the idea of wearing jeans to work and getting their lunches for free. But I just like solving problems analytically and making cool stuff.”

Zoe Kay had a degree in social science and was working as a temp at a hospital before she decided to become a programmer. Encouraged by her developer boyfriend, Kay spent several months at the free online Code Academy learning programming fundamentals before enrolling at Hackbright, a small San Francisco school that caters exclusively to women. She also completed a three-month post-graduate internship at New Relic before joining the application-performance monitoring firm as a full-time employee in January 2013.

Sometimes, though, Kay says feels like she’s suffering from “imposter syndrome.”

“I have wonderful co-workers, and I really enjoy where I work,” she says. “But sometimes I can’t believe they hired me, as I have such limited experience compared to my team members. I have to remind myself that I am just starting out and they have been in the business for years. Being in a male-dominated field just accentuates the pressure to learn quickly, since in some ways I am representing women who are entering the programming field just by being here.”

The employers: Skeptical but warming

But for every firm that’s eager to hire a recent boot camp graduate, there’s another that wants no part of them. Part of the problem is these schools are so new that most have limited track records, making it hard for employers to assess the success or failure of their graduates over the long term.

Drew Sussberg, VP of sales and recruiting at Workbridge Associates, a tech staffing and recruiting firm, has placed graduates of several top coding academies into well-paying jobs.

He admits that salaries for graduates with no prior coding experience tend to be closer to $50,000 a year instead of $100,000. And some of his corporate clients won’t even consider hiring someone who lacks a four-year computer science degree.

“If you have good communications skills, are presentable, and can pass a technical interview, you are as likely to land a job as anyone with a four-year degree who interviews for it,” Sussberg says. “But I do have clients who won’t interview people coming out of one of these programs because they believe they don’t have the skills required to do the job.”

Will Cole, project manager for Stack Overflow Careers 2.0, says, “It is unlikely we would hire someone who had no previous programming experience and had only gone to a 12-week boot camp.”

He adds that larger companies with the time and resources to train inexperienced programmers would likely be more inclined to hire academy grads. And all types of companies could benefit from sending their data analysts, product managers, or designers to these boot camps so they can work more effectively with the dev team, says Cole.

Jason Polancich, CEO of HackSurfer, an information security data services company, says he hired roughly a dozen graduates of coding schools at his previous company. But only one of them was able to do the job — and that one had been trained as a sys admin in the Navy.

“Engineering is really hard,” he says. “You can’t just decide one day you’re going to be one. Some people come out of these 12- or 15-week programs and are successful, but most of the time it’s bad for both the employee and the company. They get really frustrated because they lack the fundamentals of computer science, data theory, and math.”

Hack Reactor’s Drost argues that academies like his offer a more practical real-world education than he received as a CS major at USC.

“While I was at college I never learned the fundamentals of software engineering, never wrote code in the same room with an instructor, never learned the tactics and tools of debugging,” Drost says. “There’s an amazing amount of wasted time in the college system. We don’t waste time here.”

Traditional CS degrees focus more on the science of computers and knowledge for its own sake, adds Shaun Johnson, co-founder of Startup Institute, an 8-week program with locations in Chicago, New York, and Boston, that trains people to join startups as coders, designers, marketers, and salespeople.

“Web development, however, is a rapidly moving trade where your depth of knowledge is largely measured by what you can build,” says Johnson, who has a CS degree from Georgetown. “If you’re looking at a boot camp or other program to get into Web development, knowing how to think on your feet is just as important as really deep comprehension of how computers work, if not more so.”

The first step on a long journey

Still, Johnson admits that “zero to hero” success stories are rare.

“Most people won’t go from knowing nothing about computers to joining a startup as a Web dev,” Johnson says. “The benefit of these schools over a traditional degree program is that they offer a more flexible option for people to reach their career objectives depending on where they are in life.”

People with no prior coding experience are “not going to be great developers when they graduate — that takes years,” admits Flatiron’s Enbar. “But they will be productive and know how to continue their journey. After graduating from Flatiron our students will know enough to get an entry-level job, add value to their companies on day one, and have a foundation to build upon for years after they begin their careers.”

Still, for people with little to no coding experience on their résumés, these schools can provide a foot in the door, says Paul Solt, an adjunct professor on iPhone app development for Rochester Institute of Technology. And that might be enough.

“I think the 12-week boot camp is a great way to get started,” says Solt, who also teaches development courses online. “You work on building portfolio pieces, and that’s really all you need to get a job in the tech industry. Showing what you can do is worth more than a résumé without proof.”

Many businesses that are looking at a shortfall of more than a million programmers by the year 2020 are more than willing to give inexperienced grads a chance, even if some are destined to fail. The zero-to-hero success stories may be relatively rare, but they happen often enough to ensure that the boom in quick-and-dirty coding schools is only likely to accelerate.

For some people, it’s not always about the money. Unlike many people who enroll in coding academies, Feore says she is making less than she did in her previous position. But that wasn’t the deciding factor for her. She just wanted to build stuff.

“I am ridiculously, fabulously happy,” she says. “I love the people I work with and I love the work I do. We have a lot of fun, and I learn something new every day. It’s pretty awesome.”

This story, “Boom or bust: The lowdown on code academies” was originally published by


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