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Latest Bristol & SW tech news, updates and training dates for your diary.

Background

I was a biologist before joining the Fellowship and did a BSc in Zoology and an MSc in Biology with the aim of having a career in the environment and conservation sector and/or doing a PhD and going into academia.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

The lack of opportunities and job security in conservation led me to consider an alternative career. As a scientist I always enjoyed working in front of a computer and consider that the day to day working environment of developing websites suited my approach to work and my personality. The job and career development opportunities, variety of work and open attitudes to change were all attractions for me in getting into web development and joining the course.

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship? Where do you see yourself in the future?

In the short term I am looking to gain experience working as a junior developer and gradually develop my independence and skills in web development. Long term I would really like to be a contractor and work freelance or create something that would lead to me owning my own business.

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I had signed up to teach myself on a few platforms like treehouse and codeacademy but I hadn’t done much more than code in very basic HTML and CSS when I started.

What have you enjoyed most?

I really enjoy the way of working and the environment. DevelopMe is situated at the Paintworks in a very relaxed environment which is ideal for coding in, you are certainly not sitting in a busy office, quite the opposite! The knowledge that you are learning skills that will set you up for a great career with so many opportunities is quite motivating. Oli and Pete, the course leaders are very supportive and really help to put you at ease and give you confidence throughout. At the end of every week we have a one-to-two review with them so that you can discuss how you are progressing, any concerns you might have and they can give you feedback. This approach is invaluable.

What have you found hardest?

Coding requires a change in thinking and is quite different from reading and writing. I am developing my problem solving skills but sometimes practice and a lot of repetition is required before fully understanding something. The hardest part of the course so far has been the JavaScript and jQuery weeks. These weeks challenge your problem solving skills and way of thinking at the same time. I often knew how I would solve the challenges presented with a pen and paper but coding them structurally is a different challenge!

What advice would you give to someone thinking of attending the Fellowship?

Try out coding in your spare time to see if you like it. Codeacademy and FreeCodeCamp are good places to start. It really helped me to do a lot of research on the internet about web development and the opportunities within the industry. I also went on a practice evening with DevelopMe and discussed the programme with current students as well as investigating what positions they had following the Fellowship. You do not already need to be a ‘programmer’ or a ‘tech person’ to be a web developer. I did not have any kind of background in coding before joining the course.

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.
Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.
Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

Background

I’m an interpreter of sign language and a guide for blind people. This is something that I have really enjoyed doing.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

I was curious about coding so I decided to start teaching myself about it. I discovered that I really enjoyed it. I started to meet people from the industry at events and meetups and was advised to look into enrolling on the DevelopMe_ bootcamp. It seemed like a great opportunity to develop myself in the field and get the skills needed to start working in the industry quickly.

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship? Where do you see yourself in the future?

I’ve really enjoyed the frontend stuff I’ve done so far. I find the visual side of web development very interesting. There is so much you can create with code!

I also think that it’s important to have an understanding of what’s going on in the backend and how some of the backend languages work so you are able to understand what is going on in the background.

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I didn’t have much experience before starting the course. I had mostly been learning HTML and CSS, teaching myself by reading documentation and following some online courses on Codecademy.

How have you found the Fellowship so far?

I think is great, we are learning a lot of new things everyday. It’s really intensive, but well worth it.

What have you enjoyed most?

So far the language I’ve enjoyed the most is JavaScript and learning about how to use the command line terminal is super cool.

What have you found hardest?

Maybe php, trying to understand how everything works on the backend, but eventually we all got there!

What advice would you give to someone thinking of attending the Fellowship?

I would definitely advise them to do it. The teachers and the people who run the Fellowship are very nice, the course is really well structured and you meet a lot of great people during the course.

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.
Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.
Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

Background

Teacher, sound engineer and musician. I studied a sound engineering and composition BA, followed by a PGCE and PGDip in Music Education. I’ve worked in theatres, studios and schools as well as touring with bands and releasing recorded music.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

I’m really attracted to the idea of having fascinating, stimulating, flexible work in a thriving industry.

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship? Where do you see yourself in the future?

I’d like to get more experience in an agency before eventually going freelance. I’d love to link my sound design and composition back into this, building creative applications for use in music and performance.

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I sweated over Supercollider – a language designed for sound synthesis – for a year, about five years ago, but eventually gave up as I didn’t have the knowledge base to get it off the ground. I then moved onto MAXMSP – a visual programming language for music – which got me to think like a programmer, if not write actual code. Despite getting along with this very well, it definitely made me think that writing code was a much more elegant system for building things – so I carried a little flame for the idea of becoming a coder for quite a while.

How have you found the Fellowship so far?

Brilliant, frequently overwhelming, occasionally frustrating, always stimulating. I’m having a wonderful time. The teachers are very knowledgeable and experienced and are a pleasure to work with.

What have you enjoyed most?

Javascript and the thought process that goes into solving abstract problems. The experience of getting a grasp on some pretty abstract ideas then trying to combine and manipulate them in your head. I also love the atmosphere here at Developme HQ. The other students on the cohort are wonderful people to spend time with and there’s a real culture of humour and mutual support.

What have you found hardest?

Probably the fact that we have to move to a new topic each week or fortnight. We’re covering a huge amount in a relatively short time so we’re having to get comfortable with immersion in a particular language then having faith that if we put it down we’ll be able to pick it back up when we need to.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of attending the Fellowship?

The course is a huge commitment – in terms of time, energy and money – so it ultimately has to be taken very seriously. It’s a huge challenge but an incredibly rewarding one too. Do some free courses online, and if coding appeals to you, I can’t think of a better way of going from novice to professional in such a short time.

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.
Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.
Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

Background

I have a degree in Sports Science and spent a number of years as a Personal Trainer. Until recently I was working in sales and tech recruitment which piqued my interest in programming and Web Development.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

I wanted to learn a new skill set that would benefit me for the rest of my working life and give me a new career. I also love the speed at which the industry is evolving and the constant learning that comes with that.

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship? Where do you see yourself in the future?

In the immediate future I hope to become a Junior Web Developer and concentrate on improving my skills and knowledge. Ultimately, I would like to work building software that improves people’s lives. If I could use the flexibility the job provides to work remotely and live somewhere cool, that would also be great!

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I only started coding in January through online resources like freecodecamp.

How have you found the Fellowship so far?

It has been intense and tiring but absolutely brilliant. The teachers have all been great and made the subject material very clear and easy to understand.

What have you enjoyed most?

The Javascript and jQuery weeks were great. They were challenging but super rewarding as a result. The meetups around the city are also really fun and interesting and a great way to meet likeminded people.

What have you found hardest?

Teaching my brain to think in a different way than I’m used to. It’s unlike anything I’ve done before.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of attending the Fellowship?

Try some of the online resources to see if you like writing code. Attend one of the open evenings with Pete and Oli and if you like what you see then do it! You won’t regret the decision.

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.
Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.
Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

Background

I started playing with websites when I was about 15.

After my A-levels I went travelling, and, in Thailand, met some developers and what they did sounded really interesting.

I then discovered Codecademy and started looking into attending a bootcamp.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

I really enjoyed coding and wanted to be around like-minded people and get stuck in learning more.

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship?

I would like to make websites that people like using; to make cool things that people love, and that I’m proud of.

I am mainly interested in visual side rather than back-end.

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I’d made a simple PayPal shop and trying to do layout positioning.

I’d done all of the HTML & CSS exercises on Codecademy, doing bootstrap exercises on Free Code Camp,  and building a portfolio site.

How have you found the Fellowship so far?

So far the Fellowship has been fantastic and the course has gone above and beyond anything I could’ve expected.

One of the key things I’ve enjoyed is the intensity of the course, every day there’s new problems to solve and it feels great when you overcome them, and when the day is over I’m always looking forward to what we’re going to be working on next.

What have you enjoyed most?

I really enjoyed working with Javascript but in particular using the Angular framework and realising how powerful it is for creating great single page web applications and it makes working with forms and validation a breeze. When this was tied into making Hybrid Mobile Apps with ionic it was the icing on the cake and really good fun to make several mobile apps.

What have you found hardest?

Because of the quality of the teachers nothing has been too hard to overcome however there has certainly been some tricky parts, for instance working with PHP for the first time was really interesting but a good challenge getting my head around how the backend of the web works.

 

See what past students had to say about the Coding Fellowship

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.

Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.

Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

Background

I studied Jewellery Design at University and went on to work for a jewellery company in London as their website manager. This involved uploading photos, producing newsletters, helping redesign their eCommerce website and going through a branding change.

Why are you attending the Coding Fellowship?

2 years ago I decided I wanted to change career and started running my own jewellery business. I wanted to learn to code to add more strings to my bow to help my business.

When I worked for the jewellery company our website was built by Meanbee. From my experience of working with them I thought their job sounded really interesting. I’m looking forward to being on the other side of the fence soon!

What role are you looking for after the Coding Fellowship?

I want to work within the Bristol tech scene, and the Coding Fellowship is a great route into that.

I like the creative aspect of web development, and would be very happy working for a company on in-house projects, or working for an agency in a client-facing role.

What was your coding experience before the Coding Fellowship?

I had used Codecademy’s online resources a little, mostly just learning some HTML and CSS is as far as I’d got.

How have you found the Fellowship so far?

Really good! Learning is always satisfying, especially when you’re studying something that a few weeks ago seemed like gobbledegook: incomprehensible, impenetrable & possibly, actually, maybe just magic?

Now I get to revel in being on the opposite side of that equation – I’m really relishing the feeling of ultimate power you get when something starts working correctly!

All the other members of the cohort are sound as a pound, as are the tutors. The workspace is brilliant (especially the pingpong table ) & I’m now completely addicted to caffeine, which I feel can only be a good thing.

What have you enjoyed most?

The jQuery week – what had been a dreadful fuzz of confusion and syntax errors the week before with JavaScript, seemed to gradually clear over that week.

What have you found hardest?

JavaScript – without a shadow of a doubt. It was my first introduction to true programming (other than the preparation tutorial on Codecademy) & I actually had a bit of a brain meltdown on Tuesday. However, Mark – our tutor – was very patient & clear, & eventually it started to make sense.

 

Interested in becoming a web developer?

Attend a Coding Fellowship Introduction Evening taster workshop.

Download the Coding Fellowship information pack.

Sign up for updates about the course, students and employers.

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.

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CodingFellowship_02

The Coding Fellowship combines 12 weeks of intensive teaching, covering the fundamentals of web development, with a paid industry work placement and help to secure employment as a web developer upon graduation.

The course – run at the Paintworks, the heart of Bristol’s creative and tech quarter – is developed and delivered by industry experts, with a heavy focus on project work, using industry tools and practices, and hands-on learning.

It takes students from beginners all the way through to being employable junior web developers, while building a portfolio of work.

We catch up with two of the students on the spring cohort to find out how they are pursuing a new career in coding.

Read our Q&A with Simon & Kasia: (more…)

OUR FIRST STUDENTS HAVE JUST EMBARKED ON THEIR JOURNEY TO BECOMING WEB DEVELOPERS

Training space

The Spring Cohort of the Coding Fellowship began on May 9th, based down at Bristol’s Paintworks the fellowship is the South West’s first coding bootcamp. The programme includes a 12 week intensive taught element – teaching the fundamentals of web development – a paid industry work placement and help finding employment as a web developer upon graduation.

The Bristol and Bath region has recently been recognised as the largest regional digital hub in the UK and with predictions that the digital industries will grow faster than any other in the coming decade, it’s a great time to be learning to code and joining the thriving tech sector. You can read more about this in the recent Tech Nation Report.

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There is no doubt that software is becoming a critical layer of all our lives. It is the language of our current and future digital world. The expanding networking of everything and everyone — the growth of the Internet of Things and embedded wearable devices. The pervasive nature of technology resulting from amplified connectivity will influence nearly everything, nearly everyone, nearly everywhere.

Perhaps in the future, not knowing the language of computers will be as challenging as being illiterate or innumerate are today.

At Develop Me we agree that future innovation will come through disruptive technologies and collaborative social business models – however more importantly we firmly believe the change will come from people. People empowered, people with ideas and most importantly people with the knowledge and understanding to make things happen. The world of digital technology holds so many innovative solutions for society and the web is one of the most democratic tools ever created. (more…)