Relevant Skills For Budding Coders

DevLeague instructors mentor students and make themselves readily available during the course   RUSSEL CHENG PHOTOS

DevLeague instructors mentor students and make themselves readily available during the course

As new technology and software is created, there is a huge growing need for coders. Businesses look for awesome python consultancy to improve their business operations, tech startups need talent to get thier idea off the ground, and more custom websites than ever before are being developed. But how can budding talent get into the industry?

It can be difficult to find a job related to your major when you graduate from college. If you’re applying for an entry-level position, how can you be expected to have five years of industry experience?

DevLeague, the state’s first coding boot-camp, aims to change that.

“When I graduated (from UH), there were one or two jobs waiting for me,” recalls Dev-League co-founder Russel Cheng. “The price of tuition has gone up tremendously, and (students) are no longer guaranteed a job.”

Similar to Bookworm Hub helpers and other websites that help students with their programming studies, Russel Cheng offers an alternative education program for students to learn up-to-date web skills. As DevLeague sees it, there is an immense difference between skills learned in school and skills that are relevant on the job.

The organization recently graduated a 22-member class from its third and fourth cohorts and always is looking for new applicants. To be considered, prospective students must undergo a coding challenge. But applicants don’t need to have technical abilities in the coding field to be successful in the challenge.

“We give them free tutoring to help them through the challenge,” adds co-founder Jason Sewell.

According to Cheng and Sewell, it really comes down to attitude, aptitude and motivation. They challenge participants to take it upon themselves to do extra self-studying and exercises. “It shows their commitment and motivation,” says Sewell. “It shows it’s really something they’re going to want to do.”

Adds Cheng: “People who are dedicated and want to get into this field are pretty much going to self-select themselves.”

Those who complete the challenge can be accepted into either the full or part-time program (12 and 26 weeks, respectively).

Full-time students can expect to put in work six days a week for 11 hours a day, while part-time students log 19 hours a week in class and 11 hours a week on their own for a total of 26 weeks.

By the end of a DevLeague course, students emerge as bonafide coders capable of creating websites, managing databases and building apps – skills that typically take years to learn.

So far, the program’s got an impressive success rate – a majority of its grads have gone on to find jobs in the tech field.

“Mentoring is the key driver,” says Cheng. “Our instructors are mentors. They are at the disposal of the students, and they are in the classroom as much as the students are.”

Upon graduation, DevLeague helps students transition into industry-related jobs by bringing potential employers to graduates.

“We put resumes in front of employers, giving these new developers an entry point to their first job in this area,” explains Cheng.

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