| ||Megan Hart ||I was a Massage Therapist. I found an editors list of the top 10 coding bootcamps from around the country. I did some online work for the number one rated, but ultimately chose LaunchCode, ninth rated, because it is completely free to students and it was local to me (Saint Louis.)
LC101, the introduction class, was HARD and you get out of it what you put in. If you don't study enough and keep up you will get dropped, only about 70% of my class graduated.
Graduating doesn't mean job placement, you have to take the skills you have learned and prove you can code projects to completion on your own. They recently added Liftoff (8 weeks), to help with that process, I am taking it and in week 3.
Additionally, once you apply and get into the Apprenticeship Program, you have to be able to prove to companies that your project and your communication skills are good enough to do whatever job they need you to do in the real world. I am the over-achieving type, I coded a project to completion while between Units 2 and 3 and applied to the apprenticeship program with it. Because there are so many people who got into the apprenticeship program before me that they are trying to place, it took them about 7 weeks to get back to me with my first: would you like us to send your resume to company X? email. Then it is up to company X if they want to interview you.
I, apparently, impressed my first company interviewer, but wasn't offered a job. My second interviewer did offer me a job, and my third interviewer (within days of the second) seems to want to meet with other candidates. Additionally, I graduated on a Thursday, and I started to TA the following LC101 class the next Monday, at the time of writing this, that class is 3 of 20 weeks into their program. Yesterday, I decided to accept the offer from the second interview, I spent part of today doing the onboarding.
In general, the community and atmosphere at LaunchCode is amazing and they are super supportive and helpful, they have an online chatroom that is always busy answering questions, offering support, or just trying to make you laugh: Today in the chatroom: person 1: what if the cheese was shredded? person 2: then the answer would be grate!
The student to TA ratio is about 11 to 1, but the class size is generally somewhere in the 250-350 range, meaning that: if your TA or members of your TA group can't answer the question, bounce it off one of the other 23 or more TA's or post it in general chat seen by all. Someone gets back to you fast. |
| ||Anonymous ||I'd considered getting into computer programming for a number of years, but couldn't afford to go back to college for another degree that may or may not lead to a job, and I had a hard time staying focused when trying free, self-guided programs online. One of my partner's former co-workers went through LaunchCode's learning program and was ultimately placed in an apprenticeship, and recommended it highly to her when she mentioned that I'd been interested in programming. Initially I was pretty skeptical. How can a program offer free, no-strings-attached education to hundreds of students a year and be any good?
I realized later that the only way to do that is if your learning program is actually EXTREMELY good. My LaunchCode experience was filled with excited students, talented teachers, and supportive staff. They taught me everything I needed to know to become a web developer, provided resume and job interview support, and introduced me to a community of learners and developers who could serve as support in my job search. I and several of my friends (as well as many of the people I've met through LaunchCode) have gotten new careers in technology as a result of LaunchCode's entirely free programs.
The thing I've realized most through my interactions with LaunchCode is that they're not some for-profit bootcamp or recruiting firm who is just looking to make some quick money or only help the best of the best. Everyone I've met who works at LaunchCode is working there because they really care about the organization's mission and are determined to help anyone and everyone who is willing to put in the effort get their first programming job.
LaunchCode absolutely changed the lives of me and some of the most important people to me, and I cannot possibly recommend them enough. |