How did you find your time on the bootcamp?
Northcoders gave me the confidence to take a stack of technologies, put them together and make something useful. It’s not so much the technologies we covered that were useful, so much as the thinking and ‘grappling’ ability that we learned as a result. The team were really understanding when I was faced with personal issues during the course; when I returned it was as though I’d never left. No regrets about signing up!
What were you doing before the bootcamp and what made you apply?
I was halfway through a part-time Computer Science degree and realised it wasn’t teaching me the practical skills I needed. There was too much theory and not enough application and I was clueless when reading job specs. So I needed something that would ‘bootstrap’ my career; self-learning at home didn’t appeal so I was told about Northcoders by a friend and it was as though it was tailor-made for someone in my situation. I applied the following week.
What was the support like on the course?
I have Asperger’s and seriously struggled at times with the delivery style of the course, but the team were really understanding throughout. I had copious amounts of questions and the team always had an answer; I found the tutors not only knew how to use the technology but also knew how it was working underneath. The tutors were professional and enthusiastic, and there was an excellent dynamic in each of the cohorts I joined.
How much support did you receive from Northcoders with your job search after the course?
I was really lucky in that I got the first job I applied for. The team were really on-point and helped me prepare for the interview and also gave me some excellent pointers over what was expected in a tech-test (practical interview). My time on the course had come to an end, but I was in near-daily contact with Steph, Amul and others there - even my tutor from the course Paul sent me some reading to prepare for my interview. First-class service. These people really care about their students and want everyone to find the right role.
What advice would you give to anyone thinking about applying?
Everybody learns in their own way, but the sooner you can face reading official documentation the better since you’re getting info straight from the horse’s mouth - O’Reilly Head-First books (and O’Reilly books in general) are also excellent. Avoid YouTube tutorials like the plague - they are well meant but one-step removed from the source of truth and frequently wrong, outdated or lacking in essential explanation.
Everyone is different, but if there was one ‘clanger’ I dropped it was not doing PRE-3 which caused me to repeat Front End. So learn your HTML and CSS, up to the point of building a half-decent website with flexboxes and grids.