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S4E16: Coding Bootcamp or College Degree? With David Yang

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David Yang is the co-founder and lead instructor at Fullstack Academy, and has 17 years of programming experience.

The summer after graduating high school, David became the youngest software engineering intern to ever be accepted at Ernst and Young, and went on to earn bachelor's degrees in computer science and electrical engineering.

Before founding Fullstack, he worked as a software engineer at Microsoft and Yahoo, among other companies, and taught at Columbia University as an adjunct professor.

In our conversation, we talk about whether a coding bootcamp or college degree is the best choice for aspiring techies. He tells his own story, including what led him to create Fullstack, and gives advice on how to prepare for coding bootcamps, succeed, and impress employers after graduation.

Key takeaways:

  • Debating between a coding bootcamp or college degree? Bootcamps are cheaper, faster, and more focused than traditional computer science degrees.
  • Prepare for a coding bootcamp by getting a grasp on the core concepts of programming; it'll make it less stressful if you have some background knowledge first.
  • When it comes to job-hunting, credentials are less important than experience and skills. Instead of relying on a degree title, focus on showing the company what you're capable of.
  • Practice writing and telling stories. People who can tell stories well are the ones who do very well in their job search and their career.
  • Get involved. People who take time to write, give talks, and engage with their communities in creative ways get gobbled up by employers.

Links and mentions from the episode:

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Special thanks to this episode’s sponsors

Flatiron School: Flatiron School offers an online web developer program with a focus on community, actual development tools, and a curriculum that will teach you the skills you need to land a career as a developer. Visit flatironbootcampprep.com to get an amazing $500 off your first month.

Interview Cake: Interview Cake is a tool that helps you practice technical interview questions, so you can land your first—or next—job in tech. When you join Interview Cake, you get over 50 hours of technical interview practice questions. To find out more and get 20% off, go to learntocodewith.me/cake.

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