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30 Nov. 2020
Fitting the Part-Time Bootcamp around your life
Interested in joining our Web Development Bootcamp to learn to code, but just can't commit 9 full weeks to it? This is where our Part-Time Bootcamp comes in. Learn about the weekly time commitment of the bootcamp, the format of each session, and also hear advice from recent graduates on making the course work around jobs, family and other commitments.
What do students learn on the bootcamp?
Le Wagon’s Bootcamps are a product-driven program teaching the core concepts of Web Development and Data Science. During the course, our students learn how to build robust and beautiful web applications by themselves, collaborate within a team of developers and adopt the technical workflow followed by successful startups.
This bootcamp is built for beginners (so students do not need to have a technical background to join) and graduates go on to work as Junior Full-Stack Developers, Product Managers, in other tech-enabled roles within tech companies, or they launch their own tech startups.
Balancing upskilling with other commitments can be challenging, but it’s essential for professional growth and staying competitive in today’s rapidly changing job market, which is why we also have Part Time Bootcamps available for our Data Science and Web Development programs.
Who is the Part Time Bootcamp format suitable for?
The Part-Time Bootcamp is suitable for anyone who has commitments during the working week, Monday to Friday 9am – 6pm – whether that is a due to Work, Education or family commitments.
It covers line-by-line the exact same content as our Full-Time Bootcamps – it’s just spread out over a longer period of time [24 weeks].
The Web Development is built for beginners – all you need is a lot of motivation and commitment, a curiosity for code, and a willingness to join our community to learn with likeminded people. For Data Science, it’s best to have a foundation knowledge of mathematics.
What is the weekly format?
The Part-Time Bootcamp is designed to fit around a full-time job and takes place outside of working hours. There is a 15 hour per week commitment in total, made up of 3 hours of lectures and 12 hours of live sessions.
The live sessions are scheduled as follows each week:
Tuesday & Thursday evenings 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Saturdays 10am – 5pm
The lectures have been video recorded by our teachers and are available to watch on-demand on our learning platform. You can fit these into your schedule however suits you.
The Tuesday + Thursday sessions together are seen as one full day and the Saturday is a separate full day. There is a lecture for each day, so you have one lecture to watch before the Tuesday session, and another lecture to watch before the Saturday session.
Our Learning Platform, Kitt, will keep you right and remind you what you need to do:
What happens during a live session?
RECAP: We first start with a recap of the lecture. The Lead Teacher will spend 20-30 minutes going over the key concepts covered during the lecture, and answer any questions the group have. They will then briefly describe the coding challenges you will be tackling that session and any tips for getting started.
CODING CHALLENGES: After that, you will connect with your buddy and start working through the day’s Coding Challenges. Each session, you are randomly assigned a buddy from the cohort to work with: it’s a great way to do some pair programming, to learn how other people tackle problens, and it also means you get to know everyone in your cohort really well by the end of the bootcamp!
When you and your buddy are stuck, you will post a Help Ticket in the learning platform describing the error / what you need help with, and your ticket will be assigned to one of the teaching assistants on duty who will provide 1:1 support to get you back on track. We have 1 teacher for every 6/7 students in the class, so you never need to wait long to get help!
LIVE CODE: We then finish each day with live code – where the Lead Teacher will take you through one of the challenges of the day, describing best practices and answering questions as they code live for you. It’s a good way to close off the session, get any remaining questions answered, and watch a Senior Developer at work!
So, how do the Part-Time students do it?!
We asked them for you!
Hear from Annie, Enrica & Benedikt who completed our Part-Time Web Development Bootcamp this year in London.
What were you doing before the bootcamp?
ANNIE: I worked in Fashion Merchandising at Asos, which involved working closely with the Buying team to build seasonal ranges, providing in-depth sales analysis and trade actions to maximise profit. In February 2020, life took a different turn and I gave birth to my little boy, Henry.
ENRICA: I was working part time in a school doing office work, and also parenting my 5-year-old daughter.
BENEDIKT: I worked in Digital Marketing. The job included a lot of web admin and email marketing, which is how I initially got exposed to HTML and CSS.
Why did you join the Part-Time bootcamp?
“I wanted to make the most of my Maternity Leave… Le Wagon’s Part-Time Bootcamp meant that I could learn a new skill [coding] alongside learning to be a new mum.” Annie, Part-Time Web Development Graduate, 2020
ANNIE: I’ve always been interested in tech and design, but never really thought that I could turn this into a career. After attending a few Codebar sessions and Le Wagon’s first Women’s Coding Day (whilst being pregnant at 5 months), I knew that this was what I wanted to do. I wanted to make the most of my Maternity Leave, to be able to retrain, and Le Wagon’s Part-Time Bootcamp meant that I could learn a new skill [coding] alongside learning to be a new mum.
ENRICA: I wanted to change my career and realised I liked Software Development.
BENEDIKT: I was working full time when I started the bootcamp, and couldn’t afford to take 9 weeks off, so the Part-Time format suited me well.
How much coding had you done before joining the bootcamp?
ANNIE: I hadn’t done much coding before I joined the course; doing online courses on Codecademy and Freecodecamp in my spare time really helped to set the context before I began the course. ENRICA: I started self-studying on Team Treehouse in the summer last year, and would do about one/one and a half hours coding per day, so I had covered quite a lot of topics before I started the Part-Time Bootcamp in Spring 2020.
What did your week look like whilst on the bootcamp?
“[The Group Project] was the first time I had ever coded in a team before, and I think it was this part of the bootcamp that I learned the most.” Benedikt, Part-Time Web Development Graduate, 2020
ANNIE: My usual week was hectic to say the least; I would usually juggle my study around Henry’s routine so any coding would have to fit in with his naps or bedtime. I totally relied on the support of my family for extra help, especially during project week which was pretty intense. It was all worth it in the end.
My usual week was hectic to say the least… It was all worth it in the end.
Being able to work remotely really helped me be able to fit in my study alongside my baby, as I could work on my challenges and have Henry nearby to keep an eye on him. I’d often be working through flashcards when feeding him his bottle, or watch lectures in the park during our daily walk!
ENRICA: I would wake up at 5am, and study or exercise (on alternate days) until 7am. I would then get the child and myself ready for the day, then work and care for the family between 7am and 7pm, and then study some more from 7pm most evenings (or until 6.30pm on days when we had class, of course!)
BENEDIKT: I usually watched the lectures the evening before. The time between lectures I would review some of the material covered and try to finish challenges from the previous sessions if I hadn’t managed to, as we were covering something new each next session (but I didn’t do this religiously!)
My role was made redundant shortly after the bootcamp started, so my weeks were not as busy as those of many others. I kind of saw this as a silver lining because I was able to put in a lot of extra work and make sure I understood the concepts that we covered in the lectures. And because I couldn’t go outside because of the lockdown, I spent most of my weeks coding!
Favourite part of bootcamp?
ANNIE: My most favourite part of bootcamp was being able to build something from scratch and see it all come together, and being able to share that experience with 20-odd other fellow students was great because we could all support each other when it got tough.
Learning to code was hard, but when you finally get that big ‘aha!’ moment when your piece of code actually works is the best feeling ever!
ENRICA: Definitely the group projects: I was lucky to get two amazing buddies to work with to create our apps, and it was a lot of fun as well as lots of learning. Also, the teachers – Alex, Julio and Rahul were absolute stars in supporting us through the bootcamp!
BENEDIKT: When we started working in groups and actually created projects. It was the first time I had ever coded in a team before and I think it was this part of the bootcamp that I learned the most. After lockdown restrictions eased up a bit, we were also able to come on campus and often after the ‘working day’ we could stay behind and learn some other things on the side with our Lead Teacher and go for some drinks, which I really loved because I was able to finally meet some of the other students properly and chat code!
Most difficult / least favourite part?
ANNIE: Obviously being in lockdown meant that it often felt quite lonely when working through challenges, but the communication tools that were used on the course meant that we could still stay in touch with our buddies and bounce ideas off each other when working through our code. I also missed the social aspect too – it felt nice to finally meet fellow students on the course on person once we were able to attend on campus.
ENRICA: It’s all pretty difficult, but nothing worth having in life comes easy!
Nothing to mention as my least favourite part, I truly loved every moment. I suppose actually my least favourite part was (not Le Wagon’s fault) when I felt I needed to do more – both for work and coursework, and felt I was not giving my daughter all the attention she deserved. I have an awesome husband who picked up from where I left off, so I guess be sure you have the right support in place while you are completing the bootcamp.
“Be aware that it’s not an easy path. I think most people can do it – but it requires a lot of hard work and dedication!” Enrica, Part-Time Web Development Graduate, 2020
BENEDIKT: I didn’t get the chance to play with some of the more advanced parts of Rails as much as I would have liked (APIs, AJAX, websockets) during the bootcamp.
Do you have any advice for people joining the Part-Time bootcamp?
ANNIE: For those who are thinking of completely switching up their careers and stepping into tech, Le Wagon’s course provides the perfect foundation for you to learn real concepts and techniques that are relevant in the industry. The part-time structure works really well too, so that you can easily balance work (or a new baby!) alongside your study.
The part-time structure works really well too, so that you can easily balance work (or a new baby!) alongside your study.
And I’d say for the new mums out there who are looking for an extra challenge, I’d highly recommend this course purely for the great support from the teaching team. The remote-working option and part-time structure means that you’re also able to be there for your baby, too.
ENRICA: Be sure to make time for exercise / meditation / quality time with your loved ones. Be aware that it’s not an easy path. I think most people can do it, but it requires a lot of hard work and dedication!
I think most people can do it, but it requires a lot of hard work and dedication!
BENEDIKT: The biggest advantage you have in doing the PT bootcamp is that you have a lot of extra time to make sure that you understand the concepts that you cover in the lectures. Make sure that you use that!
What are you doing now?
ANNIE: I’ve just started my new role as a Junior Software Engineer at Veeqo, a shipping and inventory management service. It was daunting at first as I’m stepping into a completely new industry, but the support has been great and I’m learning something new every single day.
Joining the bootcamp has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, and being able to work remotely is perfect as I can be near my family and be part of an awesome industry.
ENRICA: I have resigned at my current job and will start my new role as a Junior Software Engineer at CrowdStrike next month!
BENEDIKT: I am currently working as a Full-Stack Web Developer.
Enrica wrote a full blog about her experience of completing the Part-Time Bootcamp – you can read it here!
So when does the next Part-Time Bootcamp start and what is the application process?
Applications are currently open here for our next Part-Time Web Development Bootcamp
The application process consists of the following steps: