How to Maximize Time During a Bootcamp so you Leave with a Job

By Dan Marshall

If you’re getting ready to start a bootcamp course, congratulations! You’re making a giant leap into a new and exciting career in tech. But with all the time and money that goes into attending an intensive coding course, you’ll want to make sure you’re making the most of these months so you’re job-ready by the end of your program.


Build a clear online presence

You don’t need a full on lifestyle blog with a logo, but Jacobi says a strong online presence is a necessity for the modern job hunt.

“A personal website is one of multiple options to build this presence,” Jacobi says. “Students should also use LinkedIn, Twitter, Medium, GitHub and other sites. However, building a personal website is a fantastic way to show more personality or strong design skills, especially if a student is interested in front-end roles.”

From her experience, she notes students often use Heroku, GitHubPages, AWS or DigitalOcean for their personal websites. Each has a different pricing model, but most include a free option.

Work with your portfolio in mind

When job hunting, you’ll need to put your best foot forward. The easiest way to do that? A strong portfolio.

Jacobi recommends that about two-thirds of the real estate on a resume be taken up by projects.

“A portfolio of projects is absolutely essential for our students,” Jacobi says. “Since most of them don’t have prior professional experience as developers, their projects are the primary vehicle to showcase their new skills.”

During a bootcamp, you should take the time to work on your portfolio. Keeping in mind the importance of learning as much as possible, students should aim to go above and beyond on their projects.

“If you have a passion for politics,” Jacobi says, “build an app that helps users find their nearest voting location. Passion for puppies? Build an app that scrapes shelter websites to pull in adoptable dogs. When students get creative, they can really leverage their projects to stand out from the crowd.”

Network like a human

Jacobi encourages students not to think of networking as a purely transactional career tool. Instead, view your personal and professional communities holistically.

“Networking is just making human connections — building your circle of friends and contacts to enrich your life,” Jacobi says. “The stronger the networks that students bring into the program — from their dodgeball teams, undergrads, prior professional experience, religious communities, marathon-training buddies or acapella groups — the easier path they’ll have to their first opportunity.”

She recommends, for students who find they have time, attending Meetup groups that emphasize particular interests. In addition, if students are transitioning from careers in other fields like fashion or publishing, consider investigating tech roles in those fields.

“Students’ experience in other fields… is absolutely a leg up in their job search,” Jacobi says. “We have students who used to work as editors end up as engineers at publishing houses. We have students who used to work in sales end up as client solutions engineers, where they leverage their customer-facing skills. We have students who used to work as fashion merchandisers end up as engineers at e-commerce apparel companies.”

While prior experience in a particular field is not necessary, Jacobi says employers truly value the professionalism, communication skills, drive and self-directedness that bootcamp students bring with them from those previous careers.


This article was written by Megan Pearl on September 20 2018. If you would like to read the full article click HERE 



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