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Coding Temple is a new .NET coding bootcamp in Chicago using immersive curriculum to prep students for a career in software development. We talk to the team behind Coding Temple- Frank, Ripal and Avi- about preparing for the first cohort in August, why they chose to teach .NET, and the Coding Temple application process. 

Who is the team behind Coding Temple?

Frank: Ripal and Avi reached out to me knowing that I had run two successful companies- I’m helping with everyday operations at Coding Temple.

Ripal: Avi studied Computer Science and Engineering at Berkeley, and was teaching me how to build a website using JavaScript- it was clear that he could teach these skills and he had seen the rise of bootcamps in San Francisco. We did a lot of research before launching Coding Temple in Chicago.

Avi:  I am the program director for Coding Temple. In other words, I analyze and manage the improvements on all curricula. I also manage our current team of instructors, analyzing the market needs of hiring partners, and stay up to date with the latest technologies.

I am currently a software engineer at GT Nexus, a company that provides a cloud platform for global supply chains. I am currently part of a small team that focuses on solving a wide array of NP-hard problems such as TSP, VRP, and bin packing problems using metaheuristics. In other words I work with software that uses machine learning (artificial intelligence). I am a full stack developer and the stack that I work with is the following: C++/Python/AngularJS/Redis/J2EE/SQL.

Why did you decide to start a coding bootcamp in Chicago?

Mainly because there aren’t many big .NET and Java bootcamps in the market, but also because Chicago is where we live. We wanted to start a bootcamp in the city where we have the biggest network, instead of moving to the East Coast or something.

What programming languages will students learn at Coding Temple?

We’ll teach basic HTML/CSS, SQL, C#, ASP.NET, jQuery and the Entity Framework, We’re also going to introduce weekend and 1-4 week part time bootcamps in the following areas: Data Structures/Algorithms, iOS Swift, Django/Python, Hadoop, and machine learning.  

How did you decide what to include in a 12-week program? For example, why is it important to touch on iOS?

Read above. Our main camp’s goal is to train beginners into entry level .Net developers. The reason why we are teaching the .NET stack is because no other school in Chicago is teaching it. Also, the demand for .NET and Java developers is much higher than demand for RoR web developers in the Chicagoland and surrounding areas.

Are there plans to expand with classes in Python and Hadoop?

Our mini boot camps will launch Python and Swift within the next couple months. We hope to launch a class in Hadoop next year. We’ll probably wait at least 6 months before we add more to the curriculum or launch new classes.

What type of student is Coding Temple designed for? Are you looking for beginners or applicants with a bit more experience?

We’re anticipating that most of the applicants will have no experience at all. Our ideal applicant has at least basic knowledge of HTML and CSS or JavaScript. You should be able to do 10 to 15 hours worth of work each day. When you’re learning to code in 12 weeks, you should expect to learn quickly so students with a bit of experience will have a better experience.

What does the Coding Temple application process look like?

They first fill out the application and submit it. We then schedule a Skype interview with the applicant in order to see if they are a fit for the program. If not, we recommend them to other surrounding schools that would better fit for their needs. After the interview, we assign them sections from a Codeacademy course. Note that not all applicants will be doing the same course on Codeacademy. Their assigned work depends on how much experience they have and the languages they have worked with. One applicant might get assigned 4 sections from the Python course on Codeacademy, while another applicant might get 6 sections from the Ruby course. We then schedule a follow up interview where we gauge for their reasoning and problem solving skills than technical skills. After the follow up interview, we then give a response within 2-3 days that lets the applicant know whether they have been accepted to the program.

 

How many students are you aiming for in that first cohort?

Our first cohort is in August and we’re looking for anywhere from 6 to 10 students. We want to keep the first class small so that we can get an understanding of what the students need most.

 

Who is the main instructor at Coding Temple?

Avi is no longer the main instructor for the main course at Coding Temple. Our main instructor is Hitesh Patel.

Hitesh has over seven years of experience in software development. Hitesh currently works as a .NET C# developer for Robert Half Technologies SPS team.
His language skill set includes: HTML/CSS, C#, SQL, VB.Net, C++, LINQ, and Javascript.
His web based experience includes: ASP.NET, MS-SQL Server, ADO.NET, KnockOut JS, jQuery, HTML 5.0, and Web Services.

Have you made any efforts to get women and underrepresented minorities to apply to Coding Temple?

Women have been reaching out to us regarding Coding Temple. We are actually talking to a potential female instructor who was actually one of my TAs in a computer science class. She’s still working on her PhD, but may be teaching part-time for Coding Temple.  Also, we are a minority-owned coding school.

Will there be tests or assessments that students have to pass throughout the course?

There will be two main assessments. The main purpose behind the assessments is to determine the individual student’s weak areas. Wherever we find a weakness, our instructors will address them individually, which depends from person to person.

How often will tests or assessments be given throughout the class?

The assessments will be given at the end of the first month and end of second month of in-class session.

What happens if a student fails an assessment?

We will try to address their weak areas and have them retake the assessment before the next main assessment occurs.

What’s the teaching style at Coding Temple? Will you have lectures each day or will class be project-driven?

The curriculum consists of half lecture and half hands-on experience. Everything you learn will be put into work. Students will get projects and assignments to do during class that that pertain to what they learn each day.

So students are doing an assignment every single day of class and will also have two group projects and a capstone. We like group projects because students can teach each other different techniques to learning programming concepts.

Does Coding Temple have formal hiring partners yet?

We’re actually working on that right now. There’s an IT recruiting company nearby who we’re considering partnering with us. It’s called Axiom Technology Group, and we’re working with them right now to figure out what we can help each other with.

Will you have a demo day at the end of the class or what’s the approach to job prep?

Week 10 for the students will be spent prepping for interviews. Recruiters will come in answer any questions the students might have, prep them for interviews, and connect them to hiring companies.

Where is the Coding Temple classroom?

We’re going to be teaching at WeWork in downtown Chicago. WeWork is a co-working space that houses startups. We rent out a small classroom. They’ve been a huge resource- students have 24/7 access to the space and tons of other perks.

Is there financing available for students?

We want to offer as many financing options as possible for our students, so we have three different financing options. One is to pay in full with a $500 discount. Two, we offer an installment plan to pay in full by Week 10. The third option is long-term financing over 24 months. We’re going to do all these in-house.

We’ll customize these options to each student and come up with our own payment schedule that works best for them.

Have you all faced any issues with regulation or working with Chicago or Illinois regulatory agencies?

No, nothing so far.

To learn more about Coding Temple, check out their School Page on Course Report!

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