In early 2021, St. Louis-based nonprofit LaunchCode expanded to Philadelphia, offering another free option for those looking for tech training bootcamps in the region.
It joined Resilient Coders and Tech Elevator — and later General Assembly and Codeboxx — as new-to-Philly bootcamps with similar goals of supporting diversity in the tech sector. And after seeing high demand for its first course in 2021, LaunchCode is rolling out two new bootcamp options in Philadelphia in 2022.
“After running our first part-time course and continuing to make connections with local companies, we believe the demand for junior tech talent in Philadelphia is only going to grow,” Leah Freeman, LaunchCode’s director of PR, told Technical.ly. “And we also know that the demand for accessible, free pathways into these careers is immense — we received over 800 applications for our first course.”
The new courses include a full-time, 15-week option and a part-time option. LaunchCode aims to serve about 40 students in its full-time cohort and around 180 for its part-time one.
The full-time cohort will run Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Feb. 28 to June 10. LaunchCode is looking to fill a portion of this class specifically with US veterans and transitioning military personnel, as some employee partners are in need of tech talent with security clearances.
The part-time course, which will begin in April, will meet two evenings a week and teach full-stack skills also considered in demand by the org’s employee partners. Graduates of both programs will be eligible for LaunchCode‘s apprenticeship program, through which LaunchCode helps students find paid apprenticeship and job opportunities in the region. The full-time cohort’s applications are open through Feb. 6, and applications for part-time will open on Jan. 21.
New Jersey-based Nicquelle Johnson studied software development with LaunchCode after graduating from college with a web development degree more than a decade ago. She graduated with the June 2021 cohort and is on the hunt for tech roles.
“My background landed within the healthcare industry for almost 10 years and retail for two, but I knew I needed to pivot,” she said. “Although I was able to develop my leadership skills and health care knowledge over time, I always saw my long-term career path in tech, but I had a hard time teaching myself and knowing where to start.”
A friend suggested LaunchCode, and Johnson saw it as an opportunity to get back on the tech track she originally wanted to pursue. The bootcamp has been a rewarding experience for her, she said, and she’s now interviewing for software developer roles with tech leads at different companies she “never thought I’d be considered for.”
“I’ve grown so much not just as a person but also as a technologist,” Johnson said.