Hi, Phillip! What motivated you to start a bootcamp?
Because I saw the need for a bootcamp for people that are working during that day and cannot afford to quit their job for 10 or 12 weeks. Our nighttime bootcamp is the perfect solution for those that want to make a career transition to the exciting and financially rewarding field of web development.
Our meetup also was a big motivation. We have a large following and were already successfully running weekend training classes.
What challenges have you faced so far with starting your coding bootcamp?
Up until recently, all the classes that we’ve produced have been designed for the professional developer or at least someone with intermediate knowledge of web or mobile development. When we decided to put together a course for beginners, we had to start getting the word out to that population of people. So in answer to your question, it was the sudden shift in marketing to those that what to learn web development.
What successes have you had with your first few cohorts?
I would say the distances people travel to take our course. We’ve had people fly in from Seattle, drive from Las Vegas and San Diego. Many times these people return for other classes, so that for me is very encouraging and tells me that we are successfully reaching people – even in other cities.
What plans/dreams do you have for your bootcamp over the next 5 years?
My plan is to move into a larger facility where we can be more creative in terms of the environment and culture. I want to offer a wealth of other classes. And like our name, grow this into a true learning district.
Any advice for students looking to join a bootcamp?
My advice would be to speak with graduates of the program if possible, visit the location and find out what preparatory work is required. This is important. I’ve met a lot of grads from programs that really didn’t take their prep work seriously. Therefore they struggled. Also, inquire about the skills you'll learn outside of coding. Lastly, look at the languages that they teach. Do they fit your career goals?
Any advice for people who want to start a bootcamp and/or start teaching code?
Start a meetup. That’s a great way to attract people and build an audience. Also, do free workshops. This will help you build credibility with your audience.
Do you see bootcamps replacing college for parts of the population?
Yes, definitely for those that are looking for a fast track into a career. However, I still feel that there will be a population of people that still will want to have the standard CS degree, and there are employers that still prefer that.
What is the job market like where your bootcamp is based?
There are boundless growth opportunities for those seeking jobs within the technology sector in the Los Angeles area. The job growth is not just with the behemoth tech companies. Many startups have also moved here and they are hiring. The higher paying salaries that are in demand are for web developers/software engineers. As the tech sector continues to grow, the jobs are becoming more plentiful. Los Angeles in general is now the leading center for technology jobs and growth in the United States.
• Worked as a web developer for over 15 years at various technology firms in the Los Angeles area
• Started web development in 1995. (He was self-taught.)
• Started learning classic asp and soon moved on to asp.net
• Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification earned in 2005
• Last full-time job was at American Honda in Torrance as a web developer
• Started Code District in 2011