Hi, I’m Sam! I have been a product manager for years. Now I work as an industry mentor for the product, strategy, and operations track at Pathrise. I help people land their dream job through workshops and 1-on-1 mentoring. Check out my review of Menon Labs.
- What does Menon Labs do?
- Who is Menon Labs for?
- What does Menon Labs cost?
- Ratings and reviews of Menon Labs
- Alternatives to Menon Labs
- How does Menon Labs compare to Pathrise?
What does Menon Labs do?
Menon Labs is an online fellowship that helps students and recent grads launch new careers in tech. The learning experience mimics the corporate environment as fellows in the program work in teams to build products for real startups. Fellows can take on many different roles in a team. However, the fellowship is primarily designed for students who want to become a product manager, launch a career in web development, or get a data science job.
The flagship fellowship runs for 8 weeks and requires 10-15 hours of work per week. Fellows work in groups of about 6 to build a real tech product in collaboration with startups. During the first week, fellows work on brief group exercises as they start brainstorming with their new team. After coming up with a rough product idea that addresses a problem, teams meet with a partner startup where they answer clarifying questions and get feedback on their proposed product. Teams then spend the rest of the fellowship iterating their product as they receive continuous feedback.
In addition to building products, fellows get guidance from mentors, study role-specific learning content, access the virtual community, and participate in fireside chats with industry experts. The course culminates in a demo day. Teams pitch their product solution to Menon Lab’s mentors, other team members, and industry experts. Fellows also get a formal certificate, lifetime membership to the alumni network, induction into the talent pool for recruitment opportunities, and even invites to recruitment sessions with corporate partners.
Who is Menon Labs for?
Students or recent grads who want practical experience in data science, web dev, or product management could benefit from Menon Labs. The program is especially helpful for people seeking a short hands-on fellowship that mimics the corporate environment with real startups and industry mentors. Students looking to work in teams to build a real product, especially to raise venture capital, could also be a good fit.
What does Menon Labs cost? How much work is involved?
The fellowship is completely free. Fellows build a real product for a real startup, paying with their labor.
The fellowship is open to current undergrads, grad students, and recent grads. Fellows should have at least some experience in their chosen tech role as their team will expect them to help build a product from scratch. Experience from a class, bootcamp, job, or even self-learning is acceptable so long as the prospective fellow has some ability in their chosen role. The skill level required can also depend upon the project.
The admissions process begins with a fairly extensive online application. Successful candidates are then partnered together to work through a collaborative exercise. The partners then critique each other’s performance and give helpful feedback. Finally, applicants assess the feedback itself. The process is set up to emphasize collaborative skills, as fellows will be working in teams to build a product in such a short period of time.
Ratings and reviews
As a new program, Menon Labs does not have many online reviews. However, so far the reception has been very positive. Dozens of users on Reddit applied to the fellowship and eagerly awaited a decision from the admissions department. Redditors were impressed with the fellowship for its practical experience with startup partners, free tuition, and industry mentor support. The fellowship also hosts testimonials on their website.
Alternatives to Menon Labs
If you decide not to become a Menon Labs fellow, there are a number of alternative bootcamps and tech resources that can help you launch a career as a product manager, web developer, or data scientist.
- The full-time tech bootcamp Kenzie Academy has in-person and online courses in 2 tracks: software engineering & UX design with front-end engineering. Like Menon Labs, Kenzie Academy features a hands-on curriculum with mentoring. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
- People seeking a hands-on remote program with lots of support can check out Thinkful. Students in their courses build polished projects as they work 1-on-1 with mentors. They also offer an income share agreement (ISA) so students can pay with a percentage of their income after they land a tech job.
- Similarly, BrainStation is a tech bootcamp that offers courses in coding, digital marketing, UX/UI design, data science, data analytics, and even product management. Students build projects, develop their professional skills, and get access to thousands of hiring partners including Google, Facebook, and more.
- The popular bootcamp General Assembly also teaches full-time, part-time, and 1-day courses on a variety of topics like coding, data science, and product management. The program boasts 19,000+ hiring partners, mentoring, and a job placement rate above 91.4%. Read more about General Assembly in our review.
- Aspiring product managers can look into the product management community Mind the Product. Their program boasts 50,000+ members who participate in workshops, training, podcasts, Slack channel Q&As, and networking events. Beginners can check out Dorm to learn the basics.
- People seeking a more advanced PM program can check out Product Faculty, a part-time online bootcamp designed as a career accelerator for product managers with 1-3 years of experience.
- Another product management association is Product Gym. They offer training, extensive job support, and networking opportunities for aspiring product managers. Classes are flexible with remote options.
- Aspiring data scientists can check out Data Science Dream Job. Their program is self-paced, flexible, and includes career assistance.
- Similarly, Metis is a bootcamp with introductory data analytics courses. Like Menon Labs, their program is hands-on with lots of projects students can add to their portfolios. Read more about Metis in our review.
- Another online resource is DataCamp. They host 300+ data courses that only last about 4 hours each.
- Students seeking a self-paced program can check out CodeX Academy. This remote bootcamp is flexible and includes mentorship opportunities. Read more about CodeX Academy in our review.
- You can also check out Bubble no-code bootcamps to learn how to make products without coding. Learn more about Bubble in our review.
- Students seeking university courses can check out edX. This online learning platform hosts self-paced courses from top schools like Harvard and MIT, and even big tech companies like Microsoft. Students can choose to learn the fundamentals or dive deeper into specific topics, like product management and raising venture capital. Read more about edX in our review.
- Another extremely popular online platform is Codecademy. They provide free courses in web dev, data science, and lots of programming languages. Optional memberships range from $20 to $40 for greater course options and personal support. Learn more about Codecademy in our review.
- Similarly, the online educational resources Udacity and Springboard both offer affordable self-paced courses in web dev, data analytics, and other tech topics. Read more about Udacity and Springboard in our reviews.
How does Menon Labs compare to Pathrise?
Menon Labs offers a fellowship to help students start a career as a product manager, data scientist, or web developer as long as they have prior experience. Similarly, Pathrise job-seekers should already have a background in their chosen field to get the most out of the technical curriculum.
While Menon Labs gives students valuable job experience, their job support and mentoring services are limited to 8 weeks. Pathrise is a career accelerator that offers unlimited mentoring and a flexible schedule. Fellows in our program only have 2-4 hours of group sessions per week and 1-on-1 sessions that can be scheduled as needed. Our curriculum is tailored to the needs of each individual fellow.
Pathrise has already helped 1,000+ people land their dream job in tech by helping with all phases of the job search. Our mentors work 1-on-1 with fellows on their resumes & portfolios, reverse recruiting and cold emails, behavioral and technical interview preparation, salary negotiation, and more. Like Menon Labs, we never require any upfront payments or deposits. We offer an income share agreement (ISA) so fellows in our program pay nothing until they get a great tech job.
Pathrise optimizes the job search through 1-on-1 mentorship and technical training. Fellows in our program can see their interview scores double and their application responses triple, landing a job in only 3-5 months on average. If you are interested in working with any of our mentors to land your dream tech job faster, join Pathrise.