Taking advantage of transfers

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When I was deciding which online bootcamp to sign up for one of the major things I was looking for was something that let me interact with people more knowledgeable than me on a regular basis but also let me go at my own pace.

Before signing up with Skillcrush I quadruple checked to make sure I was understanding the terms correctly.  Initially I was confused because emails with assignments are sent every weekday but the courses are advertised as lifetime access.  After looking closer I learned that you can always go in and access the material, but what you lose by going off track is the ability to stay with the your group for things like office hours and google group postings.

I was bummed about this because I am working full time and also want the freedom to be be able to explore other topics using resources like YouTube, books, Udemy, etc.  I knew the chances of me making it through 9 months without departing from the schedule was pretty slim.  Thankfully Skillcrush also had this part covered.  I learned that Skillcrush allows you to transfer to a different class up to three times, so you have the opportunity to reset your pace and move to another group.  Very cool!  This final piece of information is what made me sign up.

Today I took advantage of my first transfer.  The process to request was pretty painless.  Just following a few simple steps outlined here: https://skillcrush.com/transfer-policy/.  I AM curious though about whether I get more than three transfers since I purchased the bootcamp + an extra course.  The Bootcamp contains three blueprints and it looks like folks who just buy one blueprint or one course get three transfers, so I am wondering if the policy is actually three transfers per class and not three transfers per student?  If anyone knows about that let me know!

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Web Development Guide 2017 by Globby Vision

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Globby Vision’s 23 minute video “Web Development Guide 2017” is super helpful for visually organizing all the programming language buzzwords you have going on in your head as well as getting the latest update about how these languages are trending for 2017.

It starts off with basic web development, then Front End and Back End, and ends with Dev Ops.  Definitely a video I’ll be re-watching throughout the new year.

General Assembly: Intro to JavaScript

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I spent the majority of my Saturday this weekend at an Introduction to JavaScript workshop at the General Assembly campus in Seattle.  Taken from the General Assembly website: “General Assembly is a pioneer in education and career transformation, specializing in today’s most in-demand skills. The leading source for training, staffing, and career transitions, we foster a flourishing community of professionals pursuing careers they love.”

This was my first time at General Assembly Seattle.  It is in the heart of downtown, in a older marble hallway style downtown building with a security guard, very different from the nearby hipster Galvanize space.  However, once you actually get up to the third floor and you are in the General Assembly offices…pretty much the same.  Basically a hybrid of startup and community college.

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The workshop I attended was 6 hours, from 10 am – 2 pm, with a 30 minute break for lunch.  The workshop costs $120 but I bought it around Black Friday/Cyber Monday for 50% off.  I have done a few intro JS courses online and attended a free 1 hour Intro to JS course at Galvanize but this is the first in person course I have paid for.  My goal was to use it as a barometer for what I had learned so far and hopefully cement some of my previous learning.

How did it go?  Well I pretty much lucked out.  It seems that often these things are led by a student at the school or recent graduate, which has its benefits, but we happened to have an instructor with both a formal computer science and math education plus a full career as a programmer/manager of programmers at Microsoft.  The best part of the workshop was the incredibly in depth answers he was able to give us no matter what question we asked.  It was awesome!  I am going to poke around for opportunities that are similar to office hours with experienced programmers because I thought it was a really valuable experience.  I would definitely have paid just to sit in a classroom with that guy for 6 hours and ask general questions.

If you are curious about what we covered here are the buzz words for you:

  • Flowcharts
  • Pseudo-code
  • History and future of JavaScript
  • Data Types
  • Variables
  • Operators
  • Conditionals
  • Functions
  • Arrays
  • Loops
  • Objects

Find that list intimidating?  I did too.  Take any intro to JavaScript you can find online (even a YouTube video) and you’ll get an overview of each of those words.  Do that enough times and it isn’t scary anymore 🙂