Why Women Are Choosing Coding Bootcamps
My new husband and I got off the plane in Bali, super excited to get our honeymoon started. Our driver picked us up and drove us straight to the co-working space, Hubud. I was going to learn Ruby on Rails.
I had been accepted into the Ruby On The Beach program in Ubud, Bali - and it started a few days after we got married. After some I do’s and a quick kiss, we were on a plane to Indonesia.
The first day of class, I was pleasantly surprised that out of the 10 students, 4 were women. Kintan from Jakarta, Mona from Ubud, and Jenny from London. We had a great first day getting to know each other and at lunch, I turned and asked Jenny to tell me about herself. Jenny just graduated with her BA and MA in History.
“History!?!” I said, I’m sure looking shocked. “That’s awesome! What made you decide to learn coding with a background in History?”
Jenny Ho went on to tell me that she was hoping to bridge the gap between history and tech - she loved them both and thinks that the field of history could use some tech updating. I thought that was a great idea and we dug in a bit deeper. Why she chose the bootcamp route was what intrigued me most. “My dad really wanted me to go into Computer Science, but it was such a heavily male-dominated environment, that I decided to take another route.”
A self-proclaimed amateur programmer, Jenny has been dabbling in building websites since she was 15, so her interest in the subject matter is great.
"I chose to go the bootcamp route because it’s a better fit for me right now. The short-term immersive experience helps me to actually learn and retain information. If I had to do this in one year, I would probably procrastinate for 9 months. The bootcamp works out cheaper than a degree. It’s easier to save for living expenses for 3 months rather than to save for a year or more. I looked at quite a few bootcamps before I settled on Ruby on the Beach as my ideal bootcamp.” she said.
Turns out, the rapid learning immersive environment is what appeals to most women.
Jessica Weinberg, graduate of FullStack Academy and now employed at TimeHop said, "It was the only alternative for me after graduating with a 4 year degree in Communications. The first computer science course I tried to take in college was very intimidating. The teacher started the first day by saying that he was going to skip over a lot of fundamentals because we probably already knew them. I also wasn't sure what I wanted to do in general so it felt like a very big commitment to go through with a major without being completely sure that it was something I wanted to do. It wasn't until I was able to start building things and felt comfortable that I really felt like this was a career I wanted to pursue.”
Laura Mead, Dev Bootcamp graduate and now Twitter employee said "I knew I wasn't wasting my time. I'd been to a 4-year university, and while it wasn't exactly a walk in the park, I knew that not every class was applicable to an English career. While I majored in a useful degree (there's nothing wrong with learning how to speak and write eloquently!), I don't diagram sentences ever. Which leaves me to believe that while CS degrees are valuable, there are classes and concepts you're just never going to come across in real life. So why waste your time? With DBC, I knew I was getting to the core of what I would be using every day as a developer. And after a year and three months in the business, I can say that I use my skills every day.”
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