A review of We Can Code IT as a software engineering bootcamp

Hi, I’m Brian, a former senior software engineer and now industry mentor at Pathrise. I have worked with hundreds of web developers and software engineers to help them land their dream jobs in tech. Check out my review of We Can Code IT.

What does We Can Code IT do?

We Can Code IT is a bootcamp for people looking to launch a career as a software engineer. They offer courses in C# and Java with part-time and full-time options. The program has campuses in Cleveland and Columbus for onsite classes. As of August 2020, only the 14-week remote Java course is available.

The 14-week full-time C# program meets in-person from 9:30am to 4:00pm, Monday-Friday. All students receive free laptops. Students learn to build full stack C# applications, working with HTML, CSS, JavaScript, SQL, APIs, REST, Git, and much more. The curriculum includes live lectures, pair-programming exercises, Agile practices, coding labs, and other hands-on activities. The course culminates in a project students can add to their portfolio and present at the program’s demo day.

Students in the full-time 14-week Java course meet Monday-Friday from 9:30am to 4:00pm. The 16-week part-time Java program is flexible, with self-paced online modules and live in-person lessons on Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 5pm. A 14-week remote option has been added due to Covid-19, allowing students to attend live classes with 1-on-1 support from anywhere. Students participate in live lectures, pair-programming exercises, hands-on labs, and projects that can be added to their portfolios. The curriculum teaches students to develop software using Java, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, SQL, REST, Git, and more. 

Besides their paid C# and Java programs, We Can Code IT offers free ”pre-bootcamp” workshops. These three-day bootcamps introduce students to fundamentals, giving them a taste of coding to see if a paid program is right for them.

All programs include career services. Students participate in resume workshops, craft elevator pitches, build cover letters, optimize their LinkedIn profile, and meet 1-on-1 with career advisors.

Who is We Can Code IT for?

People who have no experience in coding and are looking to develop the necessary skills to land a job as a software engineer could benefit from the bootcamp. The program is especially helpful for people who are based in Cleveland or Columbus and for those who are interested in collaborative, project-based learning.

What does We Can Code IT cost? How much work is involved?

Tuition for any bootcamp is $13,900 with a $125 registration fee. Students can finance their tuition through Skills Fund. Interest rates and loan terms depend on an applicant’s credit history. 

A $2,000 diversity scholarship is available to students who are from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in tech, including women and people of color. Low-income students and students affected by Covid-19 are also eligible for up to $2,000 in scholarships. We Can Code IT also accepts the G.I. Bill.

The admissions process begins with a written application. Candidates are then given an assessment, featuring a coding lesson with a small test project. Select candidates are invited to a behavioral interview. No prior coding experience is required.

Ratings and reviews

We Can Code IT has fairly positive reviews. The program holds a 3.4/5 star rating on Career Karma and has been included in Course Report’s top 40 courses for 4 years. Graduates praised the bootcamp for its hands-on curriculum and collaborative environment but had mixed feelings about their career services. 

One of the top reviews on Course Report felt the bootcamp was “well taught” but warned the courses “don’t really get you the jobs they promise.” Another top reviewer described the curriculum as “up-to-date” and “challenging” but was disappointed that “most of their graduates are still looking for work 3-6 months after attending the program.” One graduate felt the “instructors were great” and was impressed by the relevant curriculum, but she was less impressed by the career placement. She remarked that her “One suggestion would be in terms of the career development program” and was worried that the “job pipeline seems to be heavily with a select few companies.” She only rated job placement 3/5 stars.

The program holds 4.62/5 stars on Switchup, where students praise the supportive instructors and collaborative curriculum. One student felt “working on a team for our final project taught me teamwork and reinforced good source control practices” and appreciated that the “instructor was patient and available.” Another graduate raved about the hands-on curriculum, impressed by the “team-oriented classroom” and the “intelligent and caring staff.” However, the student was frustrated that “I couldn’t get a job with any of their employer partners.”

On Career Karma, reviewers valued the supportive environment and project-learning. One graduate appreciated “being able to work with multiple people” and was confident that the curriculum “prepares you for real-world problems.” Graduates had mixed feelings about job support, which is only rated 52/100. Overall, however, graduates seem satisfied by the bootcamp’s collaborative, hands-on curriculum and the tech skills they gained.

Alternatives to We Can Code IT

If you decide not to enroll in We Can Code IT, there are a number of alternative bootcamps and online resources that can help aspiring software engineers.

  • The popular Fullstack Academy bootcamp offers part-time and full-time software programs for aspiring software engineers. Like We Can Code IT, Fullstack Academy is known for its hands-on approach to software learning, featuring coding projects students can add to their portfolios.
  • Students seeking a self-paced program with 1-on-1 mentorship can also check out CodeX Academy, a coding bootcamp for aspiring software engineers. Like We Can Code IT, they feature personalized student support, and even include internship opportunities. Read more about CodeX Academy in our review.
  • Another well-known bootcamp, General Assembly offers full-time, part-time, and 1-day courses on software engineering, data science, UX design, digital marketing, product management, and more. Read more about General Assembly in our review.
  • The bootcamps Lambda School and Thinkful are intensive programs like We Can Code IT, with courses in software engineering and other technical topics. They offer income share agreements (ISA) for students to pay for the bootcamp after they land a job in tech.
  • Students seeking an intensive, project-based bootcamp can check out Turing, a software engineering program with courses in front-end development and back-end development. Turing also offers an income share agreement.
  • Actualize is a full-time bootcamp that can be taken in-person at their Chicago campus or live online, following along with the in-person program.
  • Another full-time tech bootcamp, Kenzie Academy offers in-person and online courses in software engineering & UX design and front-end engineering. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
  • People looking for more remote or in-person software engineering bootcamps can also check out App Academy, Hack Reactor, and Flatiron School.
  • Covalence and Galvanize are bootcamps with both full-time and part-time courses for aspiring software engineers.
  • For those interested in remote, self-paced software engineering courses, Springboard is an online learning platform that offers thousands of courses on many tech subjects, including software engineering. Learn more about Springboard in our review.
  • Students on a budget can check out W3Schools, Codecademy, and freeCodeCamp. These free online learning resources teach courses in Java, C#, and many other programming languages.
  • Online learning platforms Udemy and Coursera also offer thousands of online videos in a wide range of tech subjects, including software engineering.
  • Similarly, Udacity is an online learning resource with courses in software development, design, and data science, and even product management. Learn more about Udacity in our review.

How does We Can Code IT compare to Pathrise?

We Can Code IT is a bootcamp that teaches people to become software engineers from scratch. At Pathrise, job-seekers should already have a background in their field of interest so that they can get the most out of our technical interview prep and pair programming sessions. 

As a full-service organization, Pathrise helps aspiring software engineers land the best job possible. Our mentors have experience on both sides of the hiring table and work with fellows on each step of their job search, including resume and LinkedIn optimization, portfolio building, behavioral interview preparation, salary negotiation, and much more. Our curriculum is tailored to each individual fellow, focusing on whatever they need the most help with.

Our program is flexible, with only 4 hours of group sessions per week and 1-on-1s that can be scheduled as needed. Pathrise’s income share agreement (ISA) is only 9% of the first year’s salary. We never require deposits or upfront payments. Fellows in our program see their interview scores double and their application responses triple, landing a job within only 3-5 months of joining on average.

Pathrise is a career accelerator that helps people land their dream job in tech through 1-on-1 mentorship. If you are interested in working with any of our mentors to ace your technical and behavioral interviews or any other aspect of the job search, join Pathrise.

Apply today.

Brian Wong

Brian Wong is an experienced senior software engineer and has worked at top bay area startups and organizations. In his free time, Brian works with Pathrise SWE fellows to help them land their dream job and learn insider tips on how to ace technical interviews.

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