Learning to code in 16 weeks at CodeClan
Don’t know your HTML5 from your Node.js? Think ‘VPN’ sounds like an American sports channel? Looking to change your career but despairing at the job prospects in this climate? Things aren’t as hopeless as they appear. There are 11,000 new jobs are created every year in Scotland’s booming tech industry – and something new in Edinburgh designed specifically to tackle the skills gap. And it’s open to anyone.
The country’s first digital skills academy, CodeClan, was launched in October 2015 with the express aim of equipping anyone and everyone with the tools and know-how to participate in this burgeoning marketplace. Scotland has always been at the forefront of science, technology and industry; access to cutting-edge learning like CodeClan means that pioneering legacy can be maintained. Since its launch late last year, the academy has seen 32 students graduate, with 70% of them being hired within five weeks of finishing their course. Average starting salary? £24,500.
And the fact these students have come from such varied backgrounds – translators, caterers, retailers, engineers, and others – proves that it hardly matters what you were doing before. The full-time course – just 16 weeks, an intensive, collaborative programme informed by the latest in teaching principles and techniques – is designed to retrain anyone by providing a grounding in the fundamental programming skills tech companies are looking for. Classes are run on a 5:1 instructor-to-student ratio, meaning that each individual student receives optimal attention and care throughout this fast-paced course.
CodeClan isn’t acting alone, either; both the Scottish Government (along with its educational award-accrediting body SQA, the Scottish Qualifications Authority) and ScotlandIS (the nation’s digital technologies trade body, a vocal advocate of the industry being key to Scotland’s economic survival) support the academy.
That’s the kind of seal of approval that might explain why 25 employers have already signed up to pledge hands-on involvement with the academy. And the list is growing, with more and more companies keen to provide more than just a job at the end of the road, but also guest speakers, site visits, and personal attendance at employer fairs. They even contribute to the ongoing moulding and remoulding of the curriculum itself, ensuring that the skills being trained are precisely those required by the industry.
CodeClan, along with the governmental bodies which support it, believes the country hosts untapped potential, with thousands of unfilled roles waiting to be claimed by talented programmers, coders and technicians. And after just 16 weeks at this growing academy, that could be you.