Codeup Doubles Down on Transparency in Student Outcomes

Codeup Doubles Down on Transparency in Student Outcomes

Student Outcomes and the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting

With pride and excitement, we’d like to announce that Codeup is an official founding member of the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting (CIRR). Codeup and all CIRR member institutions have agreed to a detailed set of student outcomes standards that eliminates unreliable graduation rates, ambiguous definitions of employment, and misleading exclusions from job placement rates.

We’re doubling down on our commitment to long-term student success, and we’re confident that CIRR will add an extra layer of value and integrity that our alumni, current students, and prospective applicants already expect from their Codeup education.

Codeup is Committed to Transparency

At all stages of the Codeup program – admissions, in-class immersion, and the job search – our staff and instructors aim to provide students with realistic advice, so they can make the most of their software development education. Historically, we’ve done this in three ways:

  1. A selective admissions process that screens program applicants for motivation, professionalism, and problem-solving ability.
  2. Transparency with students struggling in class, or for whom software development may not be the best career path.
  3. A job-placement guarantee that offers graduates who maintain job-seeker status a 50 percent refund if they don’t find a job within six months of graduation.

Even with ongoing efforts to improve these processes that monitor student success, however, we’re the first to admit that we’re human. As a small, evolving program, we recognize that we can always provide students with better feedback through detailed performance evaluations, structured student one-on-ones with instructors and staff, and transparency in student outcomes data.

Our team has already addressed evaluations and one-on-ones, but forming a consensus on bootcamp outcomes data has been an industry-wide puzzle until now.

We began resolving this issue by asking ourselves a follow-up question:

With transparency and accuracy, how do we report on students who leave Codeup or do not obtain employment?

Fortunately, other principled, results-driven coding bootcamps have asked themselves the same question, and over the past year, we’ve come together under the CIRR umbrella. For the sake of our students, our alumni, and the future of our unique approach to coding education, we’ve agreed to a detailed set of standards that establish new definitions, documentation, and validation requirements related to student graduation and job placement data.

Our Students Come First

Critical feedback from students and alumni on bootcamp outcomes has informed so much of the CIRR process. Thanks to this input, the CIRR standards support the concerns of these very students by enforcing strict standards for student outcomes reporting and, in turn, providing Codeup with even more incentive to ensure student success.

We appreciate our community for holding Codeup accountable to the high standard you deserve. We hope you will continue to do so, as we advance our mission to help people launch rewarding careers in software development.

As always, please feel free to reach out to any members of the Codeup staff or info@codeup.com with any questions or comments.

The Codeup Commitment to Your Financial Well-Being

The Codeup Commitment to Your Financial Well-Being

We’ve all seen the infomercials. Schools like ITT Tech and Career Point College have been peddling expensive, low-ROI degree programs for years. Students take out a loan to cover costs, only to discover that the school’s career services department doesn’t measure up. They graduate with few job prospects and lots of debt.

Recently, regulators have shut down those schools because they’ve failed to put students’ interests above their own.

Codeup is different.

We care about your finances, and we believe you’ll be a more engaged Codeup student and a better developer when you minimize your financial burdens. Our staff wants to help you do just that, so here’s our commitment to you:

We only encourage students to enroll at Codeup when they’re financially ready to do so. Then, if you don’t find a job within six months of completing the program, we’ll refund your tuition.

It’s that simple, and because we love transparency, here’s how we ensure our team always puts your financial well-being at top of mind:

A fair and selective admissions process. Codeup pre-screens applicants for qualities we see in successful software developers, like problem-solving ability and motivation. Unlike other schools, we’re okay turning away students who might be better off in another career. People from all walks of life can become great coders, but we want to be sure your investment of time and money will result in a better career.

Easy-to-understand funding options from reputable partners. As of this writing, Codeup is the only accelerated coding school in the South to accept G.I. Bill® benefits. Here’s a full list of ways to fund your Codeup experience:

An employer network based on relationships, not kickbacks. Employers fulfill their talent needs with us because they know the quality they get with a Codeup developer. Our career development team has one goal: Get our students into great jobs. We don’t charge employers for our services, and we don’t receive any commission for successful hires.

Life’s too short for a misguided career decision.

We’re committed to helping people become stellar coders, but we have a conscience, and we don’t accept students for the sake of filling seats in our classrooms. Come learn to code from people who care.

Nothing makes us happier than fielding questions from prospective students. Are you unsure if Codeup is right for you? Do you want to become a software developer, but you’re not sure how you’ll pay rent in the meantime? Give us a call (210.802.7289), shoot us an email (info@codeup.com), or fill out our quick application, and we’ll be in touch shortly.

ITT Tech Closes, New Model of Education Rises

ITT Tech Closes, New Model of Education Rises

A New Model of Education

The 2016 closure of ITT Tech highlights the time barriers, financial risk, and poor career prospects that are finally catching up with the traditional for-profit education industry. So what can students do instead?

Forbes Magazine ranked San Antonio as the American city with the 15th highest rate of job growth in 2015 – no surprise given our city’s recent swell in tech and entrepreneurship. The boom has created a mismatch between a surplus of available jobs for developers and a shortage of local technical talent. Codeup, a career accelerator that trains software developers and data scientists, has begun bridging that gap by training over 700 students and creating over $7 million in new tech salaries since 2013.

Codeup is different from traditional models of continued education. Four-year universities and two-year technical schools often no longer serve students’ needs. The closure of ITT Tech, one of the nation’s largest for-profit educational institutions, is a great example. Tuition at schools like ITT Tech, DeVry, and Kaplan is high ($45,000 – $90,000), they have been found to use predatory lending practices, and they rank highest among colleges that leave students in the most debt. Graduates of ITT Tech San Antonio who received federal financial aid earned an average salary of only $38,400 ten years after completion, just barely above the national average for the category. Their overwhelming time commitment, high tuition fees, and limited career support make it hard for students to complete degrees and advance their careers.

ITT Tech Closes, Another Door Opens…

Given the decline of these diploma mills and a changing jobscape, other forms of education have exploded. The new reality is that the traditional college student archetype is now a minority, while demands for alternative, dynamic educational models are only increasing. Students need a better way to enter the workforce with relevant technical skills.  

As a six-month intensive career accelerator, Codeup offers something special: a place where students can find like-minded peers and launch a new career. Our classroom-based program turns non-techies into software developers. In addition to excellent technical instruction, students receive one-on-one career guidance and gain opportunities to connect with employers. If a graduate cannot find employment within 6 months, Codeup offers a tuition back guarantee. We partner with multiple reputable loan and grant partners to make financing easy, and also accepts GI benefits. Graduates have increased their salary by $17K in the first year on average.

In light of the recent closings of ITT Tech across the country, students should pause to reconsider their educational path choices. Codeup is Texas local, dedicated to providing students with community, professional independence, and technical literacy. Are traditional models the best option, or might Codeup offer something better?

If you want to learn more about that, call us. We’re always here to help!

Codeup’s Impact on the San Antonio Tech Community

Codeup’s Impact on the San Antonio Tech Community

How Codeup Supports the San Antonio Tech Community

After joining Codeup in early 2016, I quickly realized what sets us apart from other coding bootcamps: community.

Codeup leads community development by sponsoring free learn-to-code workshops, monthly coding challenges, regular developer meetups, and closely partnering with many local companies around tech centered events.  We also hosted the Big Data Code-a-thon, a civic-minded hackathon, which allowed local software developers to use water data to create amazing new software for the Edwards Aquifer Authority.  Codeup consistently drives growth in the number of skilled developers available in the SA tech community by educating hundreds of budding software developers.  As early as our first class, Codeup contributed to doubling the number of software developers employed at Geekdom.  

Nurturing New Talent

Our team is proud to offer GI Bill support, job placement services, top-notch career planning workshops, and a diverse student population. 62% of Codeup students are minorities and 24% are women. Our premier immersive coding program offers a personalized approach to delivering technical coursework and career coaching, which focuses on critical topics like resume writing, career mapping, technical white-boarding, and interviewing skills. We also support our students all the way through job placement! We are so confident in our program that we offer a tuition refund, which ensures that we hold ourselves accountable to delivering a top-notch programming education and effective placement services.

The Codeup Founders & Team are passionate about contributing to the growth of the SA Tech Community. Our immersive program is targeted at early career or career transitioning developers that have an appetite for problem solving and learning.  Codeup also partners local startups and small tech businesses to offer an Apprenticeship Program to promote student growth and mentorship.  We are proud to be stewards of the San Antonio Tech Community by providing a top-notch coding education and creating job-ready software developers!

Bootcamp Living Expenses? Codeup’s Got You Covered.

Bootcamp Living Expenses? Codeup’s Got You Covered.

Ready to apply to Codeup? Fill out our online application! It takes 5 min. to complete, there’s no coding experience required, and we help cover your bootcamp living expenses.

Codeup now helps with your bootcamp living expenses.

You’re ready to increase your earning potential. You’re ready to kickstart a fulfilling career as a software developer. But your rent and car payments are keeping you in that dead-end job. Bootcamp living expenses are all too real.

Fear no more, friends. Codeup and Ascent Funding have a solution for you.

A leading career accelerator, Codeup transforms student lives with an outcomes-based software development education. Codeup is proud to partner with Ascent Funding to provide access to a diverse set of students. We’re dedicated to removing barriers to your Codeup training and your career.

As of August 2016, you can finance your Codeup tuition (minus the deposit), and add up to $6,000 as a living stipend during your program. We’re proud to offer financing under one low, universal interest rate for all approved students – regardless of your credit history or current position in life. Our partnership includes:

  • Level playing field for all students
    • One universal, fixed interest rate on 3-year and 5-year loan terms
  • No barriers to starting your immersive program
    • Stipend financing available to cover bootcamp living expenses
  • Empowered decisions
    • Know your interest rate, general APR, and full monthly repayments before you apply
  • Investment in your future
    • No income, employment, nor educational criteria used in underwriting
  • Upfront financing
    • No teaser rates, cosigner trickery, nor prepayment penalties
  • Cosigner options available – only if you need it

Ready to move forward or learn more? Visit our partnership site today. Be sure to check out the monthly payment calculator. That way, you’ll know your payments before submitting your online application. It only takes minutes to complete.

Ready to apply to Codeup?

Fill out our online application! It takes 5 min. to complete, and there’s no coding experience required.

Open for (Bitcoin) Business

Open for (Bitcoin) Business

At Codeup, we guide students through 18 weeks of rigorous curriculum and equip them with a comprehensive understanding of software development. We designed our program to challenge students in a number of areas, but financing is not one of them. That’s why we offer various financial options, enabling students to pay for Codeup with the funding plan that works best for them.

Since we are always looking to accommodate the needs of our students, we recently added another form of payment to our list of funding options. James Canning, a current student who went through Codeup’s application and on-boarding process from overseas, was able to pay the program fee entirely with bitcoin! Here is what he had to say about the experience:

I recently started the full-time web development boot camp at Codeup in San Antonio, Texas. Codeup is one of the most comprehensive and best-reviewed developer training programs available. One of the main reasons I chose Codeup is because I was able to pay in bitcoin, the currency in which I receive my income.

I always ask businesses I might transact with if they accept bitcoin; in the case of Codeup, I included this paragraph when I emailed them to enquire about the course:

By the way, if Codeup accepted bitcoin for payments it would be very beneficial for both parties. With a payment processor like Bitpay or Coinbase, Codeup gets instant USDs in its bank account for less than half the fees of credit cards or PayPal with 0 chargebacks and 0 fraud.

Because Codeup does their invoicing through QuickBooks, they easily added the bitcoin payments option with QuickBooks’ excellent PayByCoin feature, which uses Bitpay, the same processor Microsoft, Namecheap, Newegg and others use.

Codeup emailed me the invoice as normal and I was able to pay the program fee in moments, from anywhere in the world.

I will post a full review after the course, but so far the boot camp is excellent. Codeup achieves a friendly and supportive atmosphere and is thoroughly integrated into the local tech scene. Over 90% of graduates from the first four classes received job offers in the 6 months following the course. Personally I am not taking the course to get hired but rather to take my site, Bitedge, to the next level.

If you want to learn web development and pay in bitcoin, then Codeup is by far the best option. If you use QuickBooks for your invoicing you should enable bitcoin payments!


You can catch the full version of James’ story here.

A Guide to Hiring Fresh Technical Talent

A Guide to Hiring Fresh Technical Talent

We’ve watched many employers learn how to hire fresh technical talent since we started Codeup in 2013. Now that many of our grads have 18+ months of work experience, we spoke to employers to determine best practices for hiring Codeup grads. We saw some common themes that can help other employers. Here’s what they said.

Classical tech interviewing techniques (“Solve this problem without recursion on this whiteboard while we stare at you!”) aren’t always as useful.

  • “You must understand that this is a junior dev and probably has less than a year of coding experience. You must interview for aptitude and attitude. I usually perform at least 2-3 interviews, starting out with a behavioral interview, then perform a programming and problem solving interview. I usually ask a question that is not solvable (in the allotted time of the interview). I do this on purpose to see how they manage tough problems and difficult situations, from both an intellectual and emotional perspective.”
  • “The best practice is always to have the grads interview with different people in the team. Each person assess one specific area of expertise. So we normally have three interviews focus on each of the following aspects:
    1. Personality and cultural fit (previous projects/jobs, experience, drive, motivation, likes and dislikes, strengths and soft skills)
    2. Coding Assessment (In this one we try to simulate a work environment in which the interviewer is already part of the team and helps us come up with a feature/solution for a specific customer request. We go over analysis, database design, some white board coding for specific functions and sometimes even GUI design)
    3. Technical Assessment. Questions are asked about specific technologies and also we like to focus on their capstone project and what role/part they had during its development. We evaluate how well they can explain their project and the tasks that they performed.”

Hiring fresh talent requires a different mindset and approach to growing a tech organization.

  • “Early on we put new grads on pet projects – usually something internal that was a contrived project. We quickly discovered that real world projects were a much better starting point. Typically we have them start with writing automated tests, then slowly give them more demanding work as their skill sets develop.”
  • “Be honest with yourself about what your needs are and what your company is hiring for. Bootcamp grads need mentorship and time to develop and progress within an organization.”

An experienced mentor and development plan are essential.

  • “Understand that you are making an investment. If you make a wise selection and couple that with strong mentorship you can end up with great talent.”
  • “Pairing an entry-level developer with more experienced team members has worked well for us. We also like to get our newly graduated developers into real code as soon as possible. There is no better way to learn than solid keyboard time.”
  • “What has worked best so far is to get them into support tasks immediately, so they get familiar with the code, the architecture, the product and the customers and the learning curve, although a little more aggressive, is reduced. This way while fixing bugs or doing QA they learn the most complex and hidden parts of our system which triggers the right questions.“

Smart management and hiring approaches still apply.

  • “Providing a mix of focused assignments within their skills set along with some stretch assignments and mentorship maximizes their development.“
  • “Having an onboarding plan is a must with 1 month, 3 month, 6 month targets. Provide the developer with tutorials and find assignments where the tools and knowledge that they have at a particular point will allow them to succeed at completing such assignment. Furthermore, weekly 1:1’s are crucial.”
  • “With one of my hires, even though I didn’t feel very strong in their ability, I hired based on attitude with a hope that over time, they would become a better developer. I found that they (again because of their attitude) excelled with customer support, so they found their place there instead of development.”

Entry-level talent can positively impact team attitudes and fulfilment amongst senior staff

  • “Having entry-level people can be a great way to add energy to a team, and allows more senior developers the opportunity to mentor and teach their craft to others.”

We’d love to see how we can help your company grow its tech talent pipeline. Let’s talk! 

President’s Day News!

President’s Day News!

Howdy! Lots of news from Codeup this week.

  • Do you know anyone under 25 that should do Codeup but doesn’t have the means? Check out the new Codeup Scholars program. Do Codeup with no money down and pay us only when you earn after graduation.
  • Summer Camps for High School students! Spend two weeks building mobile games and having a blast. Check out our SummerCamp page for more details!
  • Another bootcamp added to the schedule. We’ve created a Front-end Web Developer Bootcamp over 9-weeks this summer. Check our Front-end Bootcamp page for details.
  • And finally, Codeup Teens is this Saturday. It’s a free coding session for teens 13-18.

As always, let us know what you think!

Team Codeup

Python Ahoy!

Codeup programming students

We’re excited to announce that our next full-time bootcamp starting in September will use the Python programming language as its back-end language for our six-month accelerated learning program in software engineering/web development.

In speaking with many employers, they told us that they saw Python as a great foundational tool for use in a wide variety of applications including data science, web development, DevOps and scripting.

For prospective students, this is also big news. The popularity of Python is growing and is now the number one teaching language in universities worldwide.

We will continue offering PHP in alternating courses going forward.

Thanks!

Michael @ Codeup

A New Trend: People Relocating to San Antonio for Codeup

A New Trend: People Relocating to San Antonio for Codeup

 

Starting early in 2014, we started seeing an interesting trend: the number of applicants from outside of San Antonio began growing. While our first class was 95% San Antonio residents, we’re now seeing over 50% of applicants from outside our fair city.

This recent article from Silicon Hills News is pretty representative of this trend. Laura Lorek, the founder and publisher, profiled a number of the folks who’ve come from places like Indiana, Missouri or Austin to do our program:

http://www.siliconhillsnews.com/2015/01/16/new-web-developers-debut-at-codeups-demo-day/

We’re excited that the word is getting out about our work.