4 Biggest Takeaways from the Galvanize Web Development Immersive

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Hey everyone, I'm Jordan.

I'm taking a celebrity shot for Lexi and guest blogging this week.

If you're considering taking a website development or coding bootcamp, this blog post is for you. I recently graduated from a Web Development Immersive course put on by Galvanize at their Platte campus in Denver, CO. Over the 6 months of the course, we learned the basics of web development as well as skills that are valuable to developers outside of writing code. Here are my main non-code takeaways from the course:

1 | Learn to Learn

Though the curriculum was very JavaScript-centric, there was an emphasis on learning how to learn new technologies that we’d never worked with before. We were encouraged to explore new languages and tools, dive into error messages, and continually push ourselves outside of our comfort zones. Coming out of the program, I’m confident that I can learn any technology I need to to further my career and achieve the goals I’ve set for myself.

2 | Team Sport

The stereotype of a developer is someone who sits alone in a dark basement pounding energy drinks to stay up working. In reality, software development is all about collaboration and teamwork. Each team member has their own strengths and weaknesses, and the interplay of skills among them can make or break a project. It surprised me how much teamwork was involved in development, but it makes sense. More eyes on the code, more experience with different technologies, more perspectives on how to approach a problem. All of these advantages are only possible when working with a team of diverse individuals from all different backgrounds.

3 | Community Support

Going into Galvanize, I thought I’d have a 6 month period of growth and mentorship, and then I’d be out the door and back on my own. Luckily for me, I was completely wrong. The relationships I built at Galvanize are permanent, I’ll always be able to ask my instructors and the members of my cohort for help when I need it. And on top of that, Galvanize introduced us to the Denver Devs Slack channel, a network of Denver-based developers that has proven to be a great resource for asking questions, looking for jobs, or just making friends if you’re new to the area. The network you build while studying at Galvanize combined with access to the Denver Devs Slack channel is more than any new developer could ask for in a community of peers.

4 | Agility is Key

Early on the course, the instructional team introduced us to the Agile Methodology. Rather than working on an entire project, Agile software development focuses on iterative cycles of development, where features are delivered at the end of each cycle rather than all together at project completion. Staying agile lets you deliver early and pivot easily when issues arise. None of my projects would have come out as well as they did had I tried to finish every feature before making a deliverable.

Galvanize was an amazing learning experience.

My cohort and I pushed our limits, struggling at times but supporting each other through. I’m proud to be a Galvanize graduate, and I’m proud to have accepted my first Web Development job, starting just one month after graduation. If you’re looking into immersive development courses, I’d highly recommend Galvanize, it’ll be a journey, but you’ll come out better in the end.

Shoot me an email if you want to get together and talk dev over a beer!