Bootcamp or nah?
For those who went through a Bootcamp... Did you feel that it was a benefit? Did you do in person or online?Did you feel like it was business school - where you pay for the connections and job opportunities?I'm a self-taught programmer and wondering if it's worth it for the experience. I also feel like I would benefit from the in person experience but with COVID, that option is decreasing for many options. Thanks!
I graduated from my bootcamp, Flatiron's Immersive Software Engineering program, a year ago.Personally, I felt like the best thing I received from it was solid friendships/connections with other diverse people entering the tech industry. Other than that, I didn't feel like the content/experience was worth the price tag.Feel free to DM me if you want to chat further! :)
Hi, I'm not a bootcamp graduate, however I got very useful info from reading the reviews on this site, an example school: https://www.coursereport.com/schools/blocI'd also search for graduates of bootcamps on LinkedIn and see where they are now.
Bootcamps vary widely in quality, cost, and cohort's collective level of experience. This determines everything. I did a full-time immersive web dev program on campus through General Assembly in early 2016. Unlike you I did not have programming experience beforehand. My intention was to become a frontend engineer. My number one beef with GA is that they have absolutely zero admission standards, which completely misled me and other's perception of our readiness to become engineers. People who came in with more experience got a lot more out of it! and I turned out okay too, eventually.I agree with what someone else said " I felt like the best thing I received from it was solid friendships/connections with other diverse people entering the tech industry. Other than that, I didn't feel like the content/experience was worth the price tag." I want to add that there are plenty of free networking opportunities.
I’m about 2months away from finishing the curriculum for Full Stack at Lambda School. I think it’s worth it, because of who you meet, the teachers are very supportive.In theory you could probably learn all of the stuff online through a mix of FreeCodeCamp and buying books and Udemy courses. But I didn’t feel I was self disciplined enough for self study.In Lambda, you have to pass a test every week before you can move on to the rest of the curriculum. You really get pushed to your limit, and you grow as a result. I know if I was studying at my own pace I would never choose to be as demanding as Lambda. They have career coaches that help you with getting you a job and with interview prep.Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had times when I’ve felt frustrated with Lambda, but it was still definitely worth it for me.
nope... the market for bootcamp grads have significantly changed and gotten worse... and if you already taught yourself to code you clearly can continue to teach yourself.... Bootcamps are NOT in the education business... they are in the candidate selection business... which means if they accepted you ... especially if they gave you a scholarship... you definitely would have made it DIY. So think about if the time and $ investment is worth it?In fact my advice to any prospective bootcamp student is to pick a language and try build a todo list app... if you liked it and got some features done => you should continue to learn DIY... or you want to learn in 2 month what you feel like would take you 8 month => goto bootcamp and only go to the top ones and still build a ton of personal projects on top of the bootcamp ones => this ensures you can market yourself as an intermediate developer / top of your class after graduation which has much much better supply / demand dynamics than trying to find a job as a jr. dev / bootcamp grad.if you liked it and you want more structure... => goto bootcamp and only goto the top onesif you had serious struggles and did not make much progress... => think very hard if this is what you want to do in the long run... there are many other opportunities in tech (like product mgmt) and this is exactly what experienced devs do EVERYDAY on the job... if you hate it... and have a hard time navigating the uncertainty/frustrations... chances are you will have a harder time finding a job after paying for a 10k bootcamp and spending 3+ month. And after you get a job... you are likely to experience slow growth and a lot of stress...One thing I have seen a lot is how bootcamp adds to "imposter syndrome"... a smart motivated bootcamp grad shows up... and starts to visibly struggle... they feel like they are on their own and because they no longer have a bootcamp instructor they really start to doubt themselves... struggle in silence etc...3-4 years ago, I took about 3-6 month of self teaching outside of a full-time day job... at the end I applied to bootcamps / contract / and jobs and got full scholarships for a large number of bootcamps + job offers as a jr. fullstack engineer... so I just took the job and the contracts.And if you anyone is wondering if this applies to "data science" bootcamps... yep it's exactly the same except data science boot camps are on the last leg of the "rise"... aka 1-2 years behind the pattern of dev bootcamps. (Currently a ML engineer / sr. data scientist and I interview / hire candidates for my team and occasionally mentor scrappy jrs. who are self teaching and getting close... to help "get their foot in the door" to pay it forward.)
I graduated from the Flatiron school's in-campus bootcamp last year. I deliberately chose the campus option over the online bootcamp to network and increase my chances of finding a job afterwards but the campus was newly opened and they didn't have the employer connections to set people up with jobs or invite the employers to the campus for interviews. I was in the very first cohort in the school and the second cohort had better options but overall, I felt like their career services sucked. They sent us crappy contract job leads and I had to find a job on my own. Imo, the price tag is very high considering you also have to live without an income for at least 4 months. The only benefit I got from the bootcamp was I could show the education on my resume which helped me change careers and filled the gap in my resume but you can also work and attend night classes at an accredited university and fill the resume that way.
@Ariellacg, I've been considering attending a bootcamp on and off for several years, and have been watching the space as a result. I think @NicAmos' suggestion above to combine free resources with meetups is a great one. Participating in hackathons would be another great way to build those connections without breaking the bank...If you're wanting to extend your learning and are already doing well on the self-teaching path (that did not work well for me), you might find Turing of interest - their front-end and back-end curricula have been open-sourced online.https://frontend.turing.io/https://backend.turing.io/
In general, I don't recommend people to go through a bootcamp. I signed up for a bootcamp because I wasn't confident that I had the discipline to study on my own. I ended up having to spend lots of time outside of the bootcamp to supplement my learning. If there's one thing that I thought was "worth it" about the bootcamp was the people I interacted with. My instructor was an industry professional who was very knowledgeable and passionate about coding. Many of my classmates were hardworking people who challenged themselves on assignments and projects. They were so driven and wanted to get a developer job after finishing the bootcamp. I was excited for class because of the people that were in my cohort and worked especially hard as a result.I can't speak for other bootcamps but the extent of my bootcamp's career services/support was asking me to follow a checklist (ex: create a resume, create a LinkedIn profile, apply for jobs, and check in with a career advisor about my progress). There was no actual help connecting to companies. They had a career fair but I don't know if anyone got a job out of it.If you identify yourself as a self-taught programmer, I assume you have the discipline to create a study plan and follow through with it. Don't rely on a bootcamp for self-discipline or motivation - what happens after you finish it? Don't do a bootcamp for its structured curriculum - you can follow structured curriculums for free (ex: FreeCodeCamp) or $10 on Udemy. Don't do a bootcamp to increase your job prospects - I found a developer job without a CS degree and without mentioning bootcamp, the bootcamp most likely won't connect you to the industry in a meaningful way.TDLR: Don't go through a bootcampIf you want to chat more about this topic or want specific learning resources, I am more than happy to connect.
Fresh Bootcamp grad here. I went to business school some years back too. My bootcamp experience is not the same as my business school experience for one key reason: time. My bootcamp was 12 weeks long and the curriculum completely packed. This leaves little time for the type of networking and job opportunity development that my 2-year business school program could offer. I made friends at bootcamp and had access to a great career coach, but the relationships are not the same as business school. The biggest benefit of bootcamp - it taught me how to learn to code. This is different from saying upfront that bootcamp taught me how to code. I had zero programming knowledge prior to admission. After graduating in March 2020, I could build websites and full stack apps, but I still have a long way in learning how to write code for the apps that I want to build. The difference is, I google much better now and know who to turn to for help (like the LinkedIn groups, GitHub contributors). You're in a different position from me - you already are a programmer. If you do decide to do a bootcamp, there are plenty of options and IMHO, each one is geared towards different outcomes. I'd be happy to share more. Just DM me! :)