Should I Pursue a Coding Bootcamp?

Crooked Pool Coding

So, if I opt not to pursue my Masters in Library Science, should I pursue a Masters at all? There are honestly three career paths I could pursue, and becoming a librarian would require the most investment in time and money, and therefore, the least likely for me to pursue in the short-term as Skylor and I prepare for our next chapter. Another option is continuing along my current path of digital communications, specifically in the nonprofit or public sector, many aspects of which I really enjoy, but the income potential is relatively flat. The third option is completing my coding knowledge, building a portfolio, and pursuing some sort of web development career, probably front end or UX, since that’s the next logical step to the knowledge and experience I have gained thus far. The income potential for that is much higher. The reality is that in the short-term, I will continue to pursue roles in digital communications and web content creation/management, until I’ve taught myself enough code to begin building websites from scratch.

From what I’ve gathered from my research, Coding Bootcamps are best for those with some good foundational knowledge. Because of their intense nature (they last a few months to a year, depending on the program), I have held off on enrolling in one because I don’t think I’m ready. When I can wireframe, build, and deploy a website using basic HTML and CSS on my own (without having to refer to tutorials every line of code), then I think I’ll be ready to take on the challenge of a Bootcamp. I’m attracted to the idea of enrolling in a Bootcamp because the tuition is much lower than grad school and I’ll be done much faster. Many Bootcamp schools offer mentoring and career coaching as well.  A few months ago, I had the opportunity to attend an orientation for a local apprenticeship program in Richmond. The orientation was designed to give attendees an overview of careers in development and IT security, to seek potential apprentices, and also to intimidate people into realizing that entering this world is not just as easy as taking an 8-week Bootcamp. It gave me a lot to think about. I still want to pursue a Bootcamp, but it did help me realize that I need to spend more time teaching myself before I do so, and to make sure I seek out projects that give an opportunity to get hands-on experience. Right now I’m using Free Code Camp, which takes you though various challenges, and once you get far enough, you can work on actual projects for nonprofits.

Thoughts? Have you, or do you know anyone who has pursued a Bootcamp?


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