Curriculum Spotlight

What to Expect: Student Success at Coding Temple

Written By Jess Feldman

Last updated on March 9, 2023

What does student support actually look like for a Coding Temple student? Nicole Shannon, Student Success Manager at Coding Temple shares how her team is uniquely positioned to get students the academic and emotional support they need for a successful bootcamp experience. From the first week of class to graduation day, Nicole breaks down how her team checks in and supports Coding Temple learners. Plus, find out Nicole’s tips for making the most of Student Success, whether you’re a Full-Time, Part-Time, or Self-Paced student.

Meet Our Expert: Nicole Shannon

  • As Student Success Manager at Coding Temple, Nicole provides comprehensive support to students, from monitoring student progress and creating customized academic plans for struggling students to offering constructive feedback to instructors
  • Nicole guides and supports students by leveraging resources so they can achieve academic success

What to Expect from Student Success at Coding Temple

The Student Success program is designed to provide comprehensive support and resources to students throughout their academic journey. Our primary objective is to ensure that students remain on track to successfully complete the program while also prioritizing their satisfaction and well-being. 

Our students need more than just technical resources and knowledgeable instructors. The journey to launching a career in tech is transformative and requires a significant investment of time, energy, and mental focus. This course requires efficient time management, as each week presents new technologies and concepts. Seeking help from teaching assistants and reviewing previous material is encouraged. Learning how to utilize resources and being comfortable with being uncomfortable is a huge part of the program for students. 

For those reasons, I am honored to be a source of emotional support for our students, to help them navigate the mental and emotional challenges that come with this journey. It is truly remarkable to see our students learn and grow throughout the program, but it can also be overwhelming to process all of this new information on their own. By providing a safe and supportive environment, we can help students find the strength and resilience they need to overcome any obstacles and succeed in their chosen field.

When do bootcamp students first encounter the Student Success Team? 

As soon as they are placed in their preferred cohort, students are seamlessly transitioned from the admissions process into the care of the Student Success Team.

Does Student Success support all Coding Temple students?

Yes — we are an available resource for each student! As the Manager of Student Success, I oversee the onboarding process for all programs, facilitating the setup of productivity tools, providing guidance on available resources, and addressing any program-related inquiries. 

With our live cohorts, my team and I take a more proactive role in monitoring the progress of each student, conducting regular check-ins throughout the duration of the program until graduation. 

For our self-paced program, we recognize that students operate on individual timelines, so we adopt a more flexible approach and offer support as needed. Our goal is to ensure that self-paced students also have the necessary resources and guidance to succeed in their academic pursuits.

Does the Student Success Team collaborate with the admissions team, bootcamp instructors, and the Career Services Team?

Our department plays a crucial role in connecting various key roles within the program, serving as bridges between them. Through our personalized insights, we bring tangible benefits to all departments involved. 

  • We believe in gathering genuine feedback from students, which helps us improve the onboarding and preparation processes for the program, making it more enjoyable and engaging for students. 
  • Our instructors also benefit from this feedback as they can tailor the classroom experience to better meet the needs and expectations of our students.
  • Our focus is on ensuring that our students excel in their academic journey, and our regular updates on their progress and overall performance enable our Career Services team to provide customized job support that is tailored to their individual needs.

What Student Success Actually Looks Like…

Students frequently seek our guidance when they encounter academic or personal challenges. We offer support and resources to students who may be struggling with the course material, imposter syndrome, or time management issues. 

We have a minimum of two, scheduled check-ins with students during the bootcamp, and it’s during these that we often deal with academic struggles. 

  • The first check-in happens near the beginning of the bootcamp because the first week of bootcamp can be overwhelming for students who have never coded before! They may be feeling panicked, guilty about the cost, anxious at the pace, and generally overwhelmed. In our first check-in, we reassure them that it’s normal to feel overwhelmed in the first week. We encourage them to give themself grace to find their pace with the program. We also offer tips on how to navigate the pace of the bootcamp as well as finding a happy medium with their learning style, what the course is like, and how the material is delivered.
  • The second check-in happens midway through the bootcamp. We provide students feedback from their instructors (which is positive 90% of the time!), and we talk about the final project prep during this check-in as well. The main issue that arises at this check-in is students dealing with impostor syndrome. I like to remind students that the process of coding is less about memorization and more about utilizing tools and resources to solve a problem. I often compare coding to cooking: you may not make souffle every day, but if you know how to follow a recipe you can figure out how to make it, and with practice would get better at it. With coding, you may not be using the same language every day, but you have the ability to figure it out and with practice would get used to it. We guide them to our Impostor Syndrome channel where once a week they can practice exercises to help manage imposter syndrome. I help students identify the type of impostor syndrome they’re having and brainstorm methods for facing it, such as breathing exercises, walking away from their computer, or listening to music.

We also provide support to students who may be facing personal challenges that could potentially affect their academic progress. Our team is committed to helping our students overcome any obstacles they may encounter and achieve success in their program.

We understand that when personal issues such as health problems or family emergencies arise, it can be stressful and overwhelming. We're here to offer guidance and support every step of the way. We work collaboratively with our students to find the best solutions that are tailored to their individual needs.

At the heart of our mission is the success of our students. We're passionate about helping our students achieve their academic goals and overcome any challenges that may arise along the way. Our team is here to support students and help them thrive, no matter what life throws their way.

Does the Student Success Team help students who require learning accommodations?

Yes! We work with instructors on how to accommodate students that have learning difficulties. 

For example: We had a student who suffered from debilitating anxiety. While we try to make our learning environment as comfortable and safe as possible, we’re also aware of how stringent the workplace can be, so we try to prepare all of our students to be job-ready. For this student with severe anxiety, we tailored activities like whiteboard practice so they had a more gradual introduction to this skill. To build their confidence, we did whiteboard first with their instructor and then gradually were able to whiteboard in front of the whole class.

For people who are visual learners, we validate their experience while explaining that this is a new learning environment and to stay open-minded. I definitely consider student’s feedback if I’m hearing that students in a current cohort like more visual examples. At Coding Temple, there’s a lot of real-time adaptation depending on the cohort. It’s a collaborative effort between me and the instructors — I hear feedback and the instructors assess and accommodate. 

Students with specific disabilities often have their own learning tools but we make accommodations as we can. We’ve had a student that was partially blind and another that was fully deaf and we were able to support their learning so they could graduate from the program.

How does Student Success support students who are falling behind in the bootcamp? 

Our team has had the privilege of working with many students who have overcome obstacles and achieved great success in their bootcamp studies. If a student is experiencing challenges with their coursework, they can access Student Success support through email or Slack, or by scheduling a 1:1 appointment with a team member. We take a personalized approach to each student's needs and work with them to identify the underlying causes of any struggles they may be experiencing.

From there, we offer targeted resources and guidance to help them get back on track. Whether it's through alternative note-taking methods, one-on-one meetings with instructors, or additional time for coursework completion, we're here to provide them with the support and tools they need to succeed.

Ultimately, the Student Success team is here to provide the support and resources students need to succeed in their bootcamp studies. Our team is committed to helping every student navigate any challenges they may encounter and achieve their academic goals.

How does Student Success support students who are excelling in the bootcamp? 

When we find ourselves with students who either have some prior experience or are excelling beyond, we check-in to make sure they are feeling stimulated. To foster their growth, we can assign supplementary projects or recommend more complex algorithmic problem-solving challenges. We find that these students often serve as valuable peer resources within their cohort, consistently demonstrating a willingness to assist fellow students.

Once a student graduates, can they reach back out to Student Success for anything?

We usually will direct students to our Career Services team at this point in the process who will provide valuable resources and guidance to help them. However, I always encourage students to keep in touch on their career search journey!

How to Make the Most of Your Time with Student Success

Communication is key! As the Student Success Manager, I make myself available to students at all times to identify and address any challenges they may face. By fostering a culture of openness and transparency, we empower our students to achieve their full potential.

What is the best method for bootcampers who are juggling life commitments like parenting, working a job, etc? 

We know that juggling multiple obligations can be tough, but we're here to help! Our team is happy to work with students to create a personalized plan of action. We understand that life happens, so if someone needs to step away during class, we record all sessions so they can catch up at their convenience. If a student realizes in the program now isn't the right time, we can provide options for students to better suit their needs.

What is your advice for incoming students who may be resistant to reaching out to Student Success because they feel shy, intimidated or prideful?

The students that struggle the most in the program are those that keep to themselves. What these students don’t realize is that they paid for these resources like Student Success and that we’re here to help them. Coding Temple has fostered an environment where our instructors have a level of patience like nothing I've ever seen in my life — This is an environment where you can ask for what you need! There are no stupid questions and you should never feel dumb. And there is no room for pride in this process!

Seeking out 1:1 help doesn’t mean you can’t do the bootcamp. Everybody has to relinquish themselves to this program and the material. You have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. By working with us, you may discover that you aren’t taking the most effective approach to problem-solving or time management. Sometimes it helps to hear it from someone else.

Plus, students need to keep in mind that tech is collaborative in nature. Whether at the bootcamp or on the job, they will always work with someone else on a project, so the earlier they learn that, the better off that you will be in their career.

Find out more and read Coding Temple reviews on Course Report. This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with Coding Temple.

About The Author

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman is an accomplished writer and the Content Manager at Course Report, the leading platform for career changers who are exploring coding bootcamps.

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