codesmith-logo

Codesmith

Atlanta, Birmingham, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, London, Los Angeles, New York City, Online, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Seattle

Codesmith

Avg Rating:4.89 ( 504 reviews )

Codesmith offers full-time (12-week) and part-time (38-week) immersive software engineering bootcamps in Los Angeles, New York City, and online. Codesmith is a selective, need-blind program focusing largely on computer science and full-stack JavaScript, with an emphasis on technologies like React, Redux, Node, build tools, Dev Ops and machine learning. This program enables Codesmith students (known as Residents) to build open-source projects, with the aim of moving into positions as skilled software engineers. Codesmith Residents become engineers, not technicians, through a deep understanding of advanced JavaScript practices, fundamental computer science concepts (such as algorithms and data structures), and object-oriented and functional programming. Codesmith helps residents develop strong problem-solving abilities and technical communication skills – valued capacities in a software engineer.

The Codesmith admissions process involves a written application with optional coding questions, a nontechnical interview, and a technical interview. Codesmith offers a number of free resources for preparing for the admissions process including in-person and online coding workshops, a 2-week online prep course (CS Prep), and an online JavaScript learning platform (CSX).

Codesmith offers an extensive hiring support program that guides Residents through whiteboarding, advanced technical interview practice, resume and profile development, and interview and networking strategies. Support continues upon graduation with bi-weekly check-ins and, after offers, negotiation support. Overall, 25% of graduates receive offers for Senior Engineer positions and above, and about 70% receive offers for Mid-level Engineer roles.

Recent Codesmith Reviews: Rating 4.89

all (504) reviews for Codesmith →

Recent Codesmith News

Read all (42) articles about Codesmith →
  • CS Prep

    Apply
    Front End, JavaScript, Algorithms, jQuery
    OnlinePart Time15 Hours/week2 Weeks
    Start Date March 28, 2022
    Cost$875
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    CS Prep is a structured program that teaches core JavaScript concepts and engineering best practices. CS Prep will help you develop a deep, yet intuitive understanding of JavaScript and prepare you for your Codesmith technical interview or for interviews for other software engineering roles. CS Prep is a 2-week remote course that includes live online instruction, daily problem-solving workshops, office hours with engineering mentors, and extensive technical interview practice. CS Prep operates on an alternating schedule between PST-based and EST-based cohorts. See below the approximate daily schedule breakdown.
    Financing
    DepositNo deposit
    Financing
    We offer tuition payment plans and many scholarships for the course. The tuition you pay for CS Prep will roll over to the Software Engineering Immersive tuition.
    Tuition PlansWe offer case by case payment plans, please reach out to csprep@codesmith.io with questions!
    Refund / GuaranteeIf you pass the CS Prep assessment you are guaranteed a technical interview with our full time Codesmith Program. Refunds for the course are available and distributed on a case by case basis.
    ScholarshipWe offer multiple scholarships to CS Prep, with many students paying no tuition at all. You can apply for the women in software engineering scholarship, Dean's scholarship, or minorities in tech scholarship.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelSuitable for beginners who are ready to level up to intermediate and advanced material.
    Prep WorkWe recommend some familiarity with the content in the Precourse Unit on CSX - our free online learning platform - https://csx.codesmith.io/.
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    March 28, 2022 - Online Apply by March 16, 2022
    April 11, 2022 - Online Apply by March 30, 2022
    April 25, 2022 - Online Apply by April 13, 2022
  • Full-time Remote Software Engineering Immersive - Conducted in Central Time

    Apply
    Start Date May 09, 2022
    Cost$19,950
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    Full-time Remote Software Engineering Immersive brings Codesmith's first-rate curriculum to a completely remote setting allowing for the driven engineers not located in Los Angeles or New York City to advance their careers in three months. Conducted in Central Tim, the program teaches fullstack JavaScript and computer science to prepare you for mid and senior-level software engineering roles. The expertly designed curriculum and supportive community immerses you in modern web technologies, such as React and Node.js, and encourages you to tackle unique and unfamiliar problems to prepare you for the ever-changing tech landscape. Codesmith offers an extensive hiring support program that guides students through the hiring process, including interview strategies, portfolio development, and post-graduation check-ins. By the end of the 12-week program, you will be an autonomous engineer, ready to make an impact on innovative tech companies worldwide.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Codesmith has a range of options to help you finance your education, including scholarships, payment plans, and loan partnerships. Please email hello@codesmith.io with questions.
    Tuition PlansCodesmith offers a payment plan that breaks down tuition into monthly payments. A deposit is required to secure your spot once you’ve been accepted, a down payment before the 1st day of the cohort and then three equal monthly payments for the remainder.
    Refund / GuaranteeRefunds are distributed on a case by case basis but are available.
    ScholarshipCodesmith offers 4 types of scholarships -those to students underrepresented in the technology community, women in software engineering scholarship, Dean's scholarships, as well as scholarships to prior bootcamp grads.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelPrior computer science and programming skills necessary - many applicants are self-taught through our free weekly JS workshops/online prep course.
    Prep Work4 weeks
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    May 09, 2022 - Online Apply by March 25, 2022
    June 27, 2022 - Online Apply by May 13, 2022
  • JavaScript for Beginners

    Apply
    JavaScript
    OnlinePart Time6 Hours/week2 Weeks
    Start Date March 26, 2022
    Cost$325
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    JavaScript for Beginners is a 12-hour, remote program consisting of two consecutive Saturday sessions. The program is designed for those with no previous coding experience and will teach JavaScript fundamentals and how coding works. The program offers students a launching point to continue their JavaScript studies, prepare for our more advanced programs, and build a future in software engineering.
    Financing
    DepositNo Deposit
    Financing
    This course has scholarships available, and the tuition you pay for JavaScript for Beginners rolls over and can be applied towards the tuition of our more advanced programs.
    Tuition PlansWe offer case-by-case payment plans, please reach out to jsforbeginners@codesmith.io with questions!
    Refund / GuaranteeRefunds for the course are available and distributed on a case-by-case basis.
    ScholarshipWe offer multiple scholarships to JavaScript for Beginners, with many students paying no tuition at all. You can apply for the women in software engineering scholarship, Dean's scholarship, or minorities in tech scholarship.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelThis course is designed for those with no coding experience!
    Prep WorkWe recommend completing Part 1 of the Precourse on CSX, our free online learning platform, before you start the course: https://csx.codesmith.io/units/precourse
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewNo
    More Start Dates
    March 26, 2022 - Online Apply by March 22, 2022
    April 09, 2022 - Online Apply by April 05, 2022
  • Part-time Remote Software Engineering Immersive

    Apply
    Start Date June 11, 2022
    Cost$19,950
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    The Part-Time Remote Software Engineering Immersive Program teaches fullstack JavaScript and computer science to prepare students for mid and senior level software engineering roles. The expertly designed curriculum and supportive community immerses students in modern web technologies, such as React and Node.js, and encourages them to tackle unique and unfamiliar problems to prepare them for the ever-changing tech landscape. Codesmith offers an extensive hiring support program that guides students through the hiring process, including interview strategies, portfolio development, and post-graduation check-ins. By the end of the program, students become autonomous engineers, ready to make an impact at innovative tech companies worldwide. Please email hello@codesmith.io with questions.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Codesmith has a range of options to help you finance your education, including scholarships, payment plans, loan partnerships, and full tuition available from SkillsFund. Please email hello@codesmith.io with questions.
    Tuition PlansCodesmith offers a payment plan that breaks down tuition into monthly payments. A deposit is required to secure your spot once you’ve been accepted, a down payment before the 1st day of the cohort and then three equal monthly payments for the remainder.
    Refund / GuaranteeRefunds are distributed on a case by case basis but are available.
    ScholarshipCodesmith offers 4 types of scholarships -those to students underrepresented in the technology community, women in software engineering scholarship, Dean's scholarships, as well as scholarships to prior bootcamp grads.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelPrior computer science and programming skills necessary - many applicants are self-taught through our free weekly JS workshops/online prep course.
    Prep Work4 weeks
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 11, 2022 - Online Apply by April 27, 2022
  • Software Engineering Immersive Program

    Apply
    Start Date April 25, 2022
    Cost$19,950
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationNew York City, Los Angeles, Online
    Due to COVID-19, Los Angeles cohorts (conducted in Pacific Time) and New York cohorts (conducted in Eastern Time) are currently remote (online) for the entirety of the program. The Codesmith program teaches computer science, full-stack JavaScript (notably React and Node), software architecture, Dev Ops, and machine learning, preparing graduates for mid to senior engineering positions. The course also features preparatory material, extensive hiring preparation, and ongoing support with students’ job searches.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Codesmith has a range of options to help you finance your education, including scholarships, payment plans, loan partnerships, and full tuition available from SkillsFund. Please email hello@codesmith.io with questions.
    Tuition PlansCodesmith offers a payment plan that breaks down tuition into monthly payments. A deposit is required to secure your spot once you’ve been accepted, a down payment before the 1st day of the cohort and then three equal monthly payments for the remainder.
    Refund / GuaranteeRefunds are distributed on a case by case basis but are available.
    ScholarshipCodesmith offers 4 types of scholarships -those to students underrepresented in the technology community, women in software engineering scholarship, Dean's scholarships, as well as scholarships to prior bootcamp grads.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelPrior computer science and programming skills necessary - many applicants are self taught through our free weekly JS workshops/online prep course.
    Prep Work4 weeks
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    April 25, 2022 - New York City Apply by March 11, 2022
    June 13, 2022 - New York City Apply by April 29, 2022
    August 01, 2022 - New York City Apply by June 17, 2022
    May 23, 2022 - Los Angeles Apply by April 08, 2022
    July 11, 2022 - Los Angeles Apply by May 27, 2022
  • Student
    - 8/25/2021
    Kelly Cuevas  User Photo
    Kelly Cuevas • Educator • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    N/A
    After working on Codesmith's free JavaScript lessons through CSX and attending a few free workshops, I was ecstatic to win a free weekend intensive of "JavaScript for Beginners" (JSB). My instructor was Sophie, and I can't say enough about the whole experience. Sophie was kind, patient, and knowledgable. As an educator with 23 years of experience, I appreciate the methodical way Codesmith breaks concepts down and gives you ample opportunities to practice and apply what you learned before moving on. The main thing that sets Codesmith's approach apart from other workshops I have attended is their emphasis on technical communication. Both during interactive lectures and through pair-programming, you learn to communicate clearly and concisely about your code, which not only helps you communicate, but helps solidify the information so that you own it. The course culminated with a group project, which I was nervous about. Despite being a teacher and knowing the value of group projects, I have traditionally not enjoyed doing them myself. I couldn't wrap my head around how "coding by committee" could possibly work. I am happy to say the group project was one of my favorite parts, and Codesmith made it easy through their pair-programming system. I can't believe I actually enjoyed a group project and built a product with my awesome team-member classmates. I can't wait for more! Thank you, Sophie and Codesmith!
  • Jordan   User Photo
    Jordan • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    Codesmith is a tier above many other bootcamps for one simple reason: They don’t just show you what to learn. They show you how. They encourage hard-learning and how to overcome  the very same roadblocks software engineers face on a day-to-day basis. Their fellowship program offers residents a way to connect with recent grads who understand the struggle / learning process.
     
    Also, the culture of the program is truly special. Let’s be honest-doing the kind of mental gymnastics a bootcamp requires can be overwhelming and exhausting. Even in the current remote setting, Codesmith scheduled moments to socialize and unwind. These kinds of connections with your cohort-mates and emphasis on community are in many ways just as important  skills to learn as the technical ones. 
     
    The career program is an added bonus most bootcamps overlook. Codesmith gives you an opportunity to hone your resume, practice system design and general interview technique, as well as connect you with recent grads at large companies for networking days. I actually got my current job from my cohort’s networking day, so I’m proof the system does in fact work. Before joining Codesmith, I was naturally skeptical of their numbers, but I quickly saw that they back up their talk. The 3 other members of my cohort’s project group all snagged six-figure jobs well-within the first 3 months post-grad. 

    There aren’t enough good things I can say about the entire program. This time last year, I had lost my job, had zero technical background, and was just starting to apply to various bootcamps. A year later, I snagged a dream salary at a major national company.  The technical elements, commitment to diversity and inclusion, community, and median salary for grads sets Codesmith apart from the rest. 
  • Great Prep Class
    - 8/3/2021
    Prince  User Photo
    Prince • Student • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    N/A
    The CS Prep class has been invaluable in preparing me to pass the technical interview for the Codesmith immersive program. It was a great opportunity to experience the teaching style of Codesmith programs as well. Big shout out to my instructor, Matt for being so helpful.
  • Amazing
    - 7/29/2021
    Rob  User Photo
    Rob • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    If you're looking for a career change over to software engineering, then definitely consider Codesmith.

    After attending, I gained the confidence and competence to build a full stack application, understand dev ops, and system design.

    There are two main components that make Codesmith work: the production project and career support.

    Of course, the lectures, exercises, algorithm practice all matter in terms of building the foundation of your competence as an engineer, but the meat of the value lies in those two earlier things I mention.

    The production project is about a one month long open source project that you work on with a team of 3 other people. Its main objective is to produce a some sort of tool that bring real-utility to the developer community. It not only showcases that you can solve hard problems with code, but that you think deeply about problems that matter to real engineers. This is what sets this project apart from just any final project from a bootcamp. Just go to the Codesmith website to see that many of the open source projects made by its students are being used by actual developers.

    The career support is the other piece that is so important to landing mid- to senior-level roles. They prepare us for the job search very thoroughly from resumes, job profiles, applications, phone screens, technical interviews, etc. This itself is an entirely separate skill that warrants its own focus, and Codesmith works very hard on this part of it. They will continue to provide support after graduation and into your job search. But make no mistake, you have to put in the work both during Codesmith as you learn and also during your own job search. It took me about 2.5 months before I landed my senior software engineering role. Others have landed their roles sooner, but it all depends on the individual's self-discipline to keep at it. If you've got that and really want to break into software engineering, then you'll be ok.

    And as a side note, the CIRR reports are accurate.

    Codesmith has made a world of difference in my career, and I could not have done it without them.
  • Software Developer
    - 6/23/2021
    Wayne Wilcox  User Photo
    Wayne Wilcox • Software Developer, JPMorgan • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    Choosing to learn a new skill was the best decision I made in 2020. It got me through a lot, and I got a great job. I have Codesmith to thank for that. The program taught me things I didn't even know that I needed to know. They pursue hard learning with empathy and all the understanding and open-mindedness in the world.  For the program, I applied myself vigorously, and I got back so much more confidence in my knowledge because of that.  They teach you an entire stack, so focusing and dedicating your energy to learning what they are teaching you is the key, but there is a great wealth of knowledge to be learned and applied here. More importantly, they care that I did a good job. They were just as keyed into my education as I was, and they helped me every step of the way - with helpful guidance that changed my understanding of software development, and sharpened my skills as a technical communicator and a teammember. With the confidence I gained from Codesmith, I got a job in 4 months. I applied myself, and focused, and filled out applications just like Codesmith told me to.  
  • Evan K.  User Photo
    Evan K. • Software Engineer • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    (Disclaimer: As far as I know, the program is virtual-only at this point. I was in an on-site program pre-pandemic so some of this might not apply)

    A big reason I decided to invest my time, energy, and money (lots of money) into Codesmith was because I subscribed to the same philosophy of hard learning. Everyone is going to have a different experience in this bootcamp, and some of those experiences might have negative aspects. But for better or worse, Codesmith pushes you to be detail-oriented. This is the program for you if you're into seeing how the sausage is really made, as in knowing how your code is ACTUALLY working behind the scenes. You're not just learning languages and frameworks. You're being exposed to all the adjacent tooling surrounding them, like version control, containerization, state management, etc. That being said, Codesmith does hire people who only recently finished the program, to support and teach other students full-time. While some of these mentors are awesome, you obviously can't expect 100% accuracy from them all the time.

    Codesmith works because it's somewhere between a college course and a 9-5 job, in that it simulates a real world environment with your peers who are all in the same situation as you. You have meetings, projects, deadlines, happy hours, etc. Once you finish the program though, the hard part is actually putting all that knowledge and experience together in a cohesive package and selling it to an employer. Codesmith provides excellent support in this area too, especially in the salary negotiation stage, but in my opinion you need to do a lot of this work yourself. Nobody knows how to market your best qualities like you do, so you need to fine-tune the narrative you're presenting in interviews, see what works and what doesn't. It's an iterative process.

    While the course is always evolving (even as I was midway through the program), the team of engineers behind the curriculum are brilliant, and can be trusted to keep the material fresh and relevant to employer needs. There are some times where you will finish a lecture and be absolutely lost, but I believe the people most likely to succeed in this program are the ones who are persistent. Show up to Codesmith's events consistently, learn on your own consistently, ask questions consistently, don't be afraid to break things, and be ready to work a full day (and sometimes nights) for months straight. This is absolutely not for everybody, but if you are committed to putting in the work to make this your career, it's definitely attainable.

    If you're an aspiring dev, good luck on the path, and keep learning.
  • Luis  User Photo
    Luis • Software Engineer (Front-End) • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    As someone who has never worked a full time job in the US, I have to say that going to Codesmith is the best decision I have ever made in my life. I got a freelance offer of $55/hr within 2.5 months of graduation, which I left in a month after because the codebase had way too much technical debt. Within another 2-3 months, I landed 2 other offers - 1 from an acquired start-up with TC at around 120-130k and 1 from a tech unicorn with TC around 140-180k - and I ended up taking the latter because of the technology they are using.

    Codesmith has a huge emphasis on technical communication, deep understanding of Javascript and helping students to become what the industry called a T-shape engineer, where you develop a strong domain knowledge in one technology. That is the real reason why Codesmith grads were able to land Senior Engineer roles straight out of the program. The best part about Codesmith teaching philosophy is that it makes every graduate of the program less of a cookie-cutter than their peers and I believe that is also what makes the placement rate and salary of Codesmith grads much higher than every other programs (according to cirr.org third-party-audited data) because everybody ended up with different strong domain knowledge in the end - some become expert in testing, some in React, some in Vue, some in GraphQL, some in gRPC, some in Deno, some in databases and some in microservices.  

    In this 12-week program, the portion with a curriculum (we call it the junior portion) really only spans 6-7 weeks and the rest of the remaining weeks (senior portion) are spent on tech-talks and projects where students have the time to learn certain technologies really deeply in groups. Curriculum-wise, I honestly wouldn't say this is a 5 star curriculum program, its more like 3.5-4 in my book. Within the first 6 weeks, lectures are very short and are around an hour each day, and we spent the most time mastering our skills by "hard-learning" and doing exercises that are very difficult but achievable through pair-programming. However, what makes Codesmith's teaching really stand out is its teaching philosophy and that REALLY justifies the 5 stars I give to the curriculum here. The curriculum is more about teaching you how to learn and be curious with new technologies so that you know what to learn and can learn them really fast and really deeply all by yourself without going through numerous tutorials. Almost all of us ended up implementing different technologies by ourselves that weren't taught in the curriculum at some point for half of our projects. The teaching philosophy of Codesmith is so solid that I think the quality of the curriculum is probably purposely designed to be not too perfect so we can fill in the gaps by ourselves, which I am surprised by how well things just magically worked out in the end. 

    Before we graduate from the program, Codesmith allocated a week for the hiring portion, which I personally think is the best career advice I have ever had. That portion alone is worth at least half the tuition. We learned how to job-search, negotiate salary, write resumes and cover letters, reach out to recruiters and network effectively on LinkedIn with other working engineers. We also have an alumni channel where alumni would throw job posting and give referral to those who reach out to them and have the right skills set. 

    Overall, I would say this is an imperfect program that gets everything worked out perfectly and Codesmith will forever have a place in my heart. 
  • Michael Colley  User Photo
    Michael Colley • Data Scientist • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    N/A
    I attended CS Prep to help level up ahead of my technical interview for the Full-time immersive course at Codesmith. Honestly, I was quite blown away by how much I managed to learn in those two weeks. Self-teaching JavaScript is a slow process but with the help of Matt and Greg ( the course leaders), I was able to get my head around some concepts that I was having a hard time committing to permanent memory like Closure and Recursion.  For the money, I think it's good value and is really helpful if you were to apply to any boot camp afterwards, not just Codesmith. The only con I can think of is that the hours were quite long but that's primarily because I'm based in the UK and so I had to shift my body clock to attend the course that takes place after work PST and late evening EST.
  • Brian  User Photo
    Brian • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    My experience at Codesmith was a solid 3.5/5, but I would definitely round up to a 4. The community is probably one of the best parts. Everyone is super friendly and supportive. The staff are probably a bit overworked, but you can tell that they genuinely want the best for all of the students. I was a happy student and I ended up finding employment.

    I will be separating my review into pros and cons, as follows:

    Pros:
    • Strong, supportive community. Readily available and friendly staff. I made some pretty good friends during my time here.
    • The production project is a great opportunity to work on something that will, without a doubt, deepen your understanding of the technologies that you choose to work with.
    • Very solid curriculum. The technologies that you learn are very relevant and high-demand. They also teach systems design and machine learning, although the latter is just a very short introductory unit.
    • Remote stipend for office setup.
    • There is a pretty solid network of alumni. 

    Cons:
    • Needs-blind admission. At the time of admission, I was a low income applicant and I received zero financial assistance. While there are scholarships, the vast majority of them are diversity scholarships and were not applicable to me.
    • No job guarantee. This is something that other well-established (and even newly established) bootcamps offer.
    • The instructors are mostly former Codesmith alum. While this is not exactly necessarily a bad thing, I noticed none of the instructors have a computer science degree or any real-world experience as a software engineer. Does that mean they're bad problem-solvers? No. It does, however, mean your instructor or fellow will most likely not utilize or understand best practices when writing code and designing lessons/codebases.
    • Despite the great curriculum, the React unit is in sore need of a revamp. Codesmith does not teach Hooks, which is a must-have for any React developer.
    • The job searching unit was pretty good overall, but I wish Codesmith was more specific about listing the production project as experience. A lot of job searchers are kind of left to figure things out on their own as far as that goes. I also think it would be nice if Codesmith made themselves available as an educational institute on LinkedIn. Being a bootcamp grad is not a shameful thing and giving alumni the option to list Codesmith on LinkedIn would be great.

    Overall, the experience was great, but there is still much room for improvement. I look forward to seeing how Codesmith evolves in the years to come.
  • Zac Haluza  User Photo
    Zac Haluza • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    A quick overview of my experience: I attended Codesmith from Febuary-May 2020, worked as a fellow until August, and started my first engineering role at the end of August, after applying to jobs for 1-2 months.

    (If you don't feel like reading the whole thing, scroll down to the
    Conclusion section at the very bottom)

    I was drawn to Codesmith because I already had a little under a year of self-taught experience with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, and I wanted to attend a bootcamp that had a higher level of entry for its students. After narrowing my choices down to Fullstack Academy and Codesmith, I ultimately chose Codesmith due to the appeal and quality of its in-person workshops. In particular, the Hard Parts series elevated my understanding of JavaScript to a new level — even after I thought I already had a decent understanding of the basics!

    I had high expectations coming into Codesmith, and generally speaking those expectations were met. However, I should point out that our cohort switched from on-site to remote instruction halfway through the program due to the pandemic, which affected the cohort's experience for the second half of the program.

    Codesmith's curriculum was divided into two halves when I attended (and I assume it's still fairly similar):
    • Full-stack instruction: an intensive series of lectures, pair programming exercises, and projects teaching essential full-stack technologies like React, Redux, Node, and SQL/NoSQL databases.
    • Production Project & Hiring: students build a developer tool over six weeks, and they also attend a series of lectures and workshops preparing them for the job search. They'll also put together a resume with the guidance of a fellow. Some supplemental lectures and exercises are also included here, touching on topics like AWS basics and CI/CD fundamentals.
    In addition, we also had an assessment or algorithm exercise each morning.

    Curriculum & Lectures
    Overall, the first half of the program was by far the most engaging and fulfilling for me. I came into the program with some frontend experience, and after the first half I felt confident building basic applications with servers and databases. Our lead instructors knew what they were talking about and gave their lectures in an engaging manner.

    At some points I did feel that the curriculum could be updated a bit (particularly in the second half - there was an AWS update that wasn't covered in the instructions, and we lost several hours as the instructors worked to find a solution), but I understand that the curriculum was updated during the latter half of 2020 and possibly later. It would also have been helpful to cover modern practices such as React hooks, linting, best practices for codebase architecture, etc. before going into the production project — these would make good quick additions to the curriculum if they aren't already included.

    Projects
    Possibly the biggest part of Codesmith's appeal is the "production project" - a development tool that a group of residents work on (4 or 5, for my cohort) over a span of 6 weeks. Before tackling the production project, we also completed a handful of other projects, ranging from a Chrome extension to several fullstack apps, which did a lot to prepare us for this project.

    While the production project our group built from scratch wasn't exactly what we'd call "production-ready," we did have the opportunity to iterate on several past projects and refine the codebase while adding extra features, which in retrospect might have been the better option, since it's closer to what most engineers do at their jobs!

    One aspect of the production project that was a little less than ideal was the group dynamics. In my group as well as others, there were conflicts where some members "led" the project and created a less equal learning environment for others, or in other instances some members were unwilling to make meaningful contributions and instead preferred to chat. I expect that this is always a risk when forming groups (not to mention in the actual workplace), but this did detract at times from the experience. To future students, I highly recommend getting in touch with your group's assigned fellow if any conflicts or issues occur - I don't believe it's worthwhile trying to solve them on your own when the experience is something you're paying a significant amount of money for.

    Hiring Portion
    Without a doubt, the best part of the hiring portion for me was the resume. I came out of the program with a dense, polished resume that I didn't feel embarrassed sending to employers - in contrast, the resume I wrote before CS might as well have been written by a child.

    I had high expectations for the hiring program because I had heard past grads praise it, with some even say that it was worth the cost of tuition on its own. I was 30 when I attended the program and had worked a number of non-technical jobs previously, and I didn't feel that the instruction regarding the job application or interview process broke any new ground for me. I've spoken to some other grads who are around my age and felt the same — I suspect that the people who get the most out of the hiring program are in their late teens to mid-20s.

    For me, one thing I would have changed about the hiring program would have been to include some engineers in the workshops and lectures who had experience interviewing and working outside of Codesmith. While our instructors did make a solid effort to cover the standard materials for these lectures, sections like the system design portion would have been more engaging if they were led by an experienced engineer who had gone through or given SD interviews, rather than a fellow who had only completed this same unit weeks earlier. Likewise, I would have gone into the interview process a bit better prepared if I had been given more concrete details about the typical interview process, common exercises, etc. This is something that I had to do on my own time, through speaking to other grads and going through interviews.

    Disclaimer: since we had just switched to a remote format at that point, there were issues with timing that caused several hiring lectures to be rescheduled, and unfortunately Will wasn't available to give his usual lectures. I'm assuming this isn't the current experience.

    While it's true that you only get better at interviewing by interviewing, some more concrete guidance would have helped immensely, as some lectures felt a little vague. When I attended the program, we were able to interact with full-time engineers at three different points: during an alum Q&A session, during an hour-long mock interview with an alum, and during a 15-minute (I believe) phone call where we went over our narrative with an alum. When I began applying to jobs, I was uncomfortable about reaching out to the hiring support fellow for advice — while they were doing their job to the best of their ability, I felt more comfortable reaching out to someone who had gone through the hiring process themselves. I'm aware that Codesmith now gives graduates the opportunity to book time to speak to past graduates who are now employed as engineers, which is great. I think bringing engineers with this type of lived experience into the hiring program would also be a huge win for everyone involved in it.

    Conclusion
    Based on my experience, I'd definitely recommend Codesmith to anyone who has decided that a bootcamp is the right choice for them. Codesmith helped fill in the gaps in my engineering knowledge, and it also gave me the chance to work on an in-depth project with a group of other developers. My production project was likely a big reason why I was considered for the first role that I got hired for — I built a GraphQL tool, and GraphQL was a big feature of the stack I ended up working on.

    Overall, I'd say the hiring portion was the only part of the program that didn't meet the expectations I had coming in, for the reasons I mentioned above.

    Still, a hiring program alone won't help you get a job. After the initial lectures, Codesmith provided me with an environment to push myself to improve, and a community of graduates that supported me as I moved on to the job search and beyond. Without Codesmith, I definitely wouldn't be at the engineering level I am today.
  • Tony S  User Photo
    Tony S • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    I want to start off my review with a quick preface. If you are looking for an easy way into the world of software or web development then this most likely won't be a good fit for you. It takes a tremendous amount of work throughout. Before the program, during the program, and after the program (where some would say that this is where the real work starts). Your mileage may vary depending on your initial experience and innate affinity for coding and problem solving, but there is simply no way to avoid the effort that is required for this transformative experience. 

    I started off with absolutely zero prior experience in coding and began with first learning what a variable is and what we use them for. After a period of self-studying, I wanted to take my learning process to the next level and came across Codesmith by pure chance. What immediately stood out to me was the great sense of care that they had for their applicants and the Codesmith community. What really sealed the deal for me was going through all the free resources that Codesmith provides that I felt were a great benefit in helping to solidify my understanding of the basics. After watching some of the javascript hard parts videos led by CEO Will Sentance, previously obscure and confusing concepts started to click. I was hooked and knew that this was what I was searching for. 

    From that point forward my learning process and exposure to coding took off. Everything was geared around getting through the technical interview, which for me was quite difficult. The technical interview IS difficult, but it's not without reason. If applicants aren't able to demonstrate the level needed to enter the immersive programs then it really isn't in anyone's benefit for that applicant to be accepted as once the immersive starts, the brakes are few and far between, and the level of difficulty increases exponentially. Believe me when I say that Codesmith is not trying to trick anyone during the technical interview nor does it require any esoteric knowledge. It's simply testing if the applicant has a good understanding (not mastery) of a lot of the fundamental concepts in javascript that serve as the building blocks for what is to come in the immersive. If you are struggling with the technical interview, reach out to people in the Codesmith community. They truly do care and want to see you succeed, but the effort and dedication from your end HAS to be apparent.

    As challenging and exhausting as the full-time immersive was, it was an incredible experience that I wish I could do all over again. Never before have I been with a group of people so focused and passionately working towards a goal for such an extended period of time. The struggle and pain that we went through as we were hit with wave after wave of difficult concepts and frameworks/libraries really helped us to bond and form a close connection (they are still my friends to this day that I confide in). You really do start to get a sense of working as an engineer when going through different group projects, especially when you get to the production project phase and start mapping out your workflow with your team members. The sense of pride that you feel when you create something from scratch at the end was such a rewarding feeling as you work under a deadline with your team members. The anxiety that I felt when going through the program and not understanding everything was subsided by the constant support from the staff and fellows. 

    When you wrap up the technical side of things, you start getting into the job hunt phase where you learn how to finally work towards leveraging the skills that you've acquired towards a full-time job as an engineer. Most people would say that this part is actually harder than the technical portion as the job search process is quite volatile. There will be a lengthy trial and error process and no matter what there IS a level of luck involved as well. But those that prepare WILL be able to capitalize on the opportunity when they eventually come across it. You will be able to go through the entire application process at Codesmith, from developing your profile and resume, to how to optimize your LinkedIn profile,  to how to write cover letters and sell yourself as a credible engineer. Codesmith also has advisors like Eric K, who have been in the industry and are a tremendous benefit to helping you navigate scenarios that you will encounter like negotiating your salary and benefits, discussing your narrative and background, and how to portray yourself as a competent engineer so that when you do come across these situations you are able to recall to the experience provided to you!

    To wrap up....
    I have been on both sides at Codesmith.  As someone that went through the full-time program, and as someone that works for Codesmith. I can truly say that there is no subterfuge, Codesmith genuinely cares about this process and helping people to achieve their goals and to fulfill their motivations for going through this rigorous program, whatever they may be. The effort required is tremendous but all in all, I can say without hesitation that it's worth it. The community that Codesmith has developed here is second to none, and it's why I wanted to work for Codesmith. I wanted to be able to give back to other applicants going through this process just like how when I was applying to Codesmith there were so many people that reached out and helped me to get through everything. Life as an engineer/developer is one of continuous learning and improvement, and if that's what you're looking for I truly believe that Codesmith is a great way to get started. The outcomes and salaries may seem very enticing, and rightly so. But more than that, it's this valuable skill that you are acquiring that will be in demand and dominate our society for years and years to come. 
  • Spencer Wyman  User Photo
    Spencer Wyman • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    My Codesmith story pretty different from most, but it has the same happy ending.

    I come from a more technical background than a lot of people who come to Codesmith. I studied mathematics in college, taught math and science professionally, and was already comfortable with the basics of coding. To top it all off, I wasn't even very interested in web development, I wanted to work in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence and was looking for a way to enter into that field.

    Something about the culture, philosophy, and pedagogy of Codesmith drew me in, and I joined. It was an excellent decision.

    During the program, I found ways to take what we were working on and make it interesting to me. I spent more time focusing on databases and algorithms, and focused my projects around things that related (however tangentially!) to Machine Learning.

    Right after I graduated, the pandemic hit, and Codesmith hired me on to help deliver some of the lessons remotely and to help maintain their website. The managers at Codesmith knew my interests, and were kind enough to let me spend a significant amount of time developing their Machine Learning curriculum.

    After I left at the end of 2020, I was able to build a web app that leveraged computer vision that I could show off to companies and demonstrate my interest in Machine Learning.

    After a few months of job searching, I was able to find a perfect position for me – a software role developing tools for a machine learning team at a startup using computer vision to help diagnose cancerous biopsies.

    To be clear, I'm not saying Codesmith will turn you into a Machine Learning engineer. What I got from Codesmith wasn't some specific set of skills or special knowledge. Instead, Codesmith provided me exactly what I was missing: the ability to spearhead a publishable project from ideation to deployment; experience working with a team of engineers on a project for extended periods of time; familiarity with the tools that professionals use; war-stories to tell of uncovering and overcoming daunting technical challenges. In short, Codesmith developed my engineering maturity.

    If you too lack engineering maturity, and have the determination to work through the long hours and challenging curriculum, then I can't recommend Codesmith enough. I don't know what you are trying to achieve, but if you are creative and hard-working, you can leverage the catalyzing environment of Codesmith to make it happen.

Codesmith Outcomes


95%
On-Time Graduation Rate
83%
In-Field Employed
$116,500
Median Salary

100% of students intended to seek in-field employment within 180 days of graduating. 0% of students did not intend to seek in-field employment.Below is the 180 Day Employment Breakdown for 92 graduates included in report:

180 Day Employment Breakdown:

Full-time employee
82.0%
Full-time apprenticeship, internship or contract position
0.0%
Short-term contract, part-time, or freelance
1.1%
Started a new company or venture after graduation
0.0%

Employed out-of-field
0.0%
Continuing to higher education
%
Not seeking a job for health, family, or personal reasons
%

Still seeking job in-field
16.9%

Could not contact
0.0%

Salary Breakdown:

91% of job obtainers reported salaries. 2% of job obtainers were hired by the school itself.

Notes & Caveats:

Thanks!