My friend Pamela had some thoughts on code schools that she shared on Twitter today and I just have to echo them in every venue that I have. Code schools have long made me feel uncomfortable. It really started when a local code school started amping up representation at RailsBridge (free & community driven), obviously with an aim to drive RailsBridge grads to their boot camp. Considering the other TAs were there from companies that were interested in hiring, I thought it really sleazy that they were just using it to try to recruit more students. Add this in to women generally needing more validation before they feel comfortable calling themselves developers and that makes me feel even more uncomfortable.
I try to do my part by running PyLadies Boston and Pamela runs Rails Girls Atlanta. Both of these groups exist to provide a community for women to learn to code, with no charge. I’ve actually had multiple women from my group start applying to jobs as developers and I know the same goes with Rails Girls. Community can make a big different and we need to let women know that you don’t have to shell out $$$ to become a developer. The community will help!
PS - I have met so many wonderful and smart grads of code schools. This is not a knock on you! It’s a knock on this f’ed up industry.