It started with a car crash and ended with a baby

The first web developer bootcamp to run in Bristol has now finished, and, by all measures, was a great success!

3 of the 4 students were offered paid work placements by Bristol tech companies, with the fourth on maternity leave before starting a work placement later in the year.

The feedback from the companies they are working with has been extremely positive.

Ben Organ, Technical Director of Nudge Digital, one of the companies offering a placement, had this to say about the programme:

“The intensive format of the fellowship and extensive support surrounding it are exactly what’s needed to develop flourishing talent into a developer who can join a team and start working on commercial projects.”

You can check out Josh’s first website that he built on his work placement with Yadda here: http://hammerpuzzle.co.uk

This was from an initially auspicious start, with one of the students late on the first day, due to being knocked off his bike on the way in!

2 hours later, having been checked out by paramedics, he was at his desk and raring to go, if a little shaken.

The 3 month course covers both front and back-end coding, as well as teaching the ‘softer’ skills of how to communicate ideas and talk about their work, explain issues encountered and how they were overcome, as well as how to work effectively in a modern web team.

“I wanted to gain digital skills which I could apply into my area of expertise, but also beyond it. Taking an intense 12-week course seemed to be a good opportunity to gain new skills in a relatively short period of time.” Kasia Pranke, student

Students are also given help to embed themselves in the culture of being a web developer, attending talks and socials in the local tech community, and quickly become comfortable approaching other developers and employers to discuss their work and passions.

The feedback from students was hugely positive with all graduates giving 5-star reviews on Develop Me’s Course Report page.

“I have met so many fantastic people through the Coding Fellowship and at the moment my contacts in the industry is far and above my expectations.

If you’re prepared to push yourself and work on your skills outside and after the course there really isn’t a better way to muscle yourself into the industry. In a year’s time I’m confident I will be an established member of the community and that just wouldn’t have been possible otherwise.” Simon New, student

After the 12 weeks of training, covering modern tooling and technologies like Sass, AngularJS, Laravel and Git, students go on to paid work placements in Bristol companies, with career support for those not securing a permanent role afterwards.

“Earning money for solving problems and writing code is how I want spend my time and this experience has only confirmed it’s the right career for me.” Simon New, student

The students were all career changers, 25-45 from a range of backgrounds, including a composer and conductor, a translator, a marketing manager and an artist.