Why Hire A Bootcamp Developer?

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What is a coding bootcamp?

The idea of coding bootcamps is both a relatively new and interestingly ubiquitous concept. Despite their presence, it seems they appear generally enigmatic. For anyone reading who may be unfamiliar with the idea, coding bootcamps are, at their crux, accelerated learning programs for seriously dedicated students who wish to refine their programming self-study to a professional working knowledge — At least that’s my take on it. So what’s the big deal?

What I find interesting is the confusion centered around the efficacy and legitimacy of coding bootcamps. One of the more valuable lessons I’ve learned in my young adult life is that no piece of paper or institution awards you any guarantee. Nor does that name or degree bear any real insight into a person’s intellect or drive to succeed. I know people who didn’t fare well in school, or didn’t even go to college, that are doing amazing things and I also know very educated people who aren’t doing much of anything. It’s the entire basis for the Silicon Valley argument against the need for a college degree to create engaging websites, write innovative software, or develop an addicting application.

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I have two degrees and am currently attending a coding bootcamp. I have no stake in questioning either institution’s value other than to make the point that individuals ultimately determine their worth. You get out of life what you put into it. There’s no replacement for hard work, determination, and grit.

What sets bootcamp graduates apart?

Bootcamp students have skin in the game. They likely took months off of work and earning potential to dedicate themselves fully to the cause of their own fulfillment and pursuit of their dreams. With the likelihood of them transitioning from a previous career, they bring dynamic perspectives and talents to the industry. Everyday they drink from a firehose of new technology and information. They learn quickly because they care. They are eager for new lessons and the opportunity to take their newfound knowledge and apply it.

At the end of the day, it’s a bootcamp. You eat, sleep, and breath code.

Continuing to advance your programming knowledge is the march you begin on day one and don’t stop until it’s over. Even then, you never really stop. What you have begun is a lifestyle. You have become a member of the development community and the maker-space. Eventually you become a craftsman and begin to realize all the pride you take in your work. As you learn more, you will continuously look back and laugh at the code you wrote months before.

The Employer Perspective:

If you’re considering hiring someone for a position that has attended a coding bootcamp, I can’t tell you they’ll exceed or even meet all of your desired job requirements. Then again, you probably know better than I do that neither will a number of computer science graduates. What you will know is a little bit about where they came from. The commitment, focus, and sacrifice they made to put themselves in a competitive application in front of you. So see what they know. You may end up hiring a life-long learner with a passion for programming capable of becoming your next senior lead.

Current Bootcamp Students:

Take a deep breath. Remind yourself why you embarked on this journey and what your goals are. It’s common for students to feel like an imposter coming from another discipline but know your worth. Learning to program is no easy feat. If you are serious, if you want it badly enough, you will learn anything you put your mind to. That knowledge will get you a job. Someone will see what you are capable of and realize the potential of investing their own time and resources in you. Just like Test Driven Development, in order for you to pass, you must first fail. Use your time in bootcamp to learn as much as you can from failing moments and stay objectively optimistic about your ability to find a working solution to whatever problem lies ahead of you.

Prospective Students:

If you are interested in attending a coding bootcamp, do your research. Find a program that’s the right fit for you. Be wary of promises. There are no certainties in life — except for death and taxes. Experienced instructors will be your best indication of a healthy bootcamp. After that, it’s up to you. If you’ve followed along and read some of my previous posts, I probably mentioned that I attend DigitalCrafts. If you’re interested in learning more about them, I have only had a positive experience.

On that note, I can only ever speak to personal experiences. If any of these feelings resonate with you, you are who I am writing this for.

On a personal note,

I’m a little over halfway through my own coding bootcamp journey and recently created a work-in-progress portfolio to share a little bit about what I’ve been learning and working on. If you’d like to see what that looks like, you can check it out below!

Until next time,

Code on!

— Will