How coding is connecting minorities to tech scholarships

Thanks to coding bootcamp, more than $400,000 in tuition scholarships will be awarded to women, minorities.

dev-bootcampDev Bootcamp is celebrating three years of helping individuals reach career goals with a renewed effort to encourage more women and underrepresented minorities to enter the tech sector.

Since Dev Bootcamp created what it says is the first coding skills bootcamp in 2012, career prospects for software developers have continued to grow. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that hiring of software developers, who earned a median $90,000 in 2012, will grow at twice the rate as the average for all occupations through 2022, spurring demand for more bootcamp-style developer training programs.

“We are proud of the progress we’ve made in opening doors and providing much needed skills training for those who previously knew nothing about coding. We recognize that we can make a greater impact in driving efforts to increase the representation of women and underrepresented minorities in the tech industry, and we are increasing our focus here,” said Anne Spalding, director of Dev Bootcamp’s San Francisco office.

(Next page: Dev Bootcamp’s pledge)


Having graduated more than 1,300 students since its inception, Dev Bootcamp has pledged:

1. To award $425,000 in tuition scholarships for women and underrepresented minorities enrolling in its programs over the next year, and

2. To improve awareness among diverse communities by partnering with organizations like #YesWeCode, which focuses on outreach to communities typically underrepresented in technology.

“Dev Bootcamp is not only a leader among the coding schools, but also a leader in promoting racial and gender diversity within the tech industry,” said Van Jones, Workforce Development Expert for #YesWeCode. “Our goal is to help companies find and develop the next generation of tech rock stars from communities that you wouldn’t expect them to come from, and Dev Bootcamp’s new scholarship program offers these would-be tech stars an immediate pathway.”

The proliferation of such programs prompted Dev Bootcamp to lead an effort to launch a New Economy Skills Training Association (NESTA) with nine other bootcamps earlier this week, committing via a letter to President Obama to a set of industry standards for publishing completion and employment outcomes. The goal is to ensure that NESTA’s 10 charter members provide high-quality training that satisfies the expectations of students and the demands of companies looking for technical talent.

“As the originator of the immersive coding school industry, Dev Bootcamp has graduated more than 1,300 students, making it one of the largest bootcamps of its kind,” notes the company. After graduation, Dev Bootcamp says it focuses on maintaining engagement with its graduates through its active alumni community, engaging many as coaches and mentors for new students and celebrating the new tech jobs its graduates have landed.

Using input from past students, instructors and employer partners, Dev Bootcamp has updated the program that aims to take beginners to employable web developers in a matter of months. The 19-week program – 9 weeks remote plus 9 weeks on-site and 1-week career preparation – leverages multiple learning modalities such as lecture, pair programming, group projects, and individual challenges to optimize student engagement.

“Dev Bootcamp goes beyond just teaching people how to code. We teach our students how to practice empathy, communicate effectively, build strong relationships and adapt to feedback,” says Spalding. “With non-technical skills training woven in seamlessly with the technical curriculum, Dev Bootcamp trains students to become not only good coders, but also exceptional team players capable of operating in dynamic technical environments with a diverse group of colleagues.”

Material from a press release was used in this report.

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Laura Ascione

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