Every track also includes job search preparation for students; support and instruction in crafting resumes, cover letters, portfolios, and online presences. Career support staff meets one-on-one with every student to review and practice interviewing skills. After completing courses, students are placed in hand-selected internships with tech companies at no extra cost, allowing them to begin their job search with coding experience already on their resumes. To kick off their job search, graduates participate in a Demo Day where they present projects to local, hiring employers.
Recent Epicodus Reviews: Rating 4.72
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- How to Land an Internship After Coding Bootcamp
- Why CD Baby Hires Developers (and interns!) from Epicodus
- January 2019 Coding Bootcamp Podcast
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More Start DatesJanuary 7, 2020 - PortlandJanuary 7, 2020 - Seattle
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- Epicodus Review- 7/29/2016Anonymous • Student • Course: Android • Campus: Portland
Overall, I believe this is a useful program. However, that comes with some caveats. The structure of the classes, the instructors, the facility, and career preparation are satisfactory. You will learn a lot with this program (if you apply yourself), but the biggest thing you will learn is how little you know about the field, which is not necesarily a problem.
After finishing the program a couple weeks ago, I have applied for about 20 positions, and have yet to hear back for even a phone interview from any of them. It is too soon to tell how successful I may in getting a job in the tech sector, but I feel I have sufficient skills in order to do. The main issue I am encountering is that most positions state they want someone with a CS degree (BS or associates), which I lack. The one thing I think could be useful to the program would be to include a class surrounding basic computer science.
- My Epicodus Experience- 7/22/2016Anonymous • Software Developer • Graduate • Course: PHP and Drupal • Campus: Portland
I took and graduated from the August 2015 PHP cohort. Before enrolling into the class, I had zero professional programming experience, although I had done a little bit of learning on my own thru Treehouse (teamtreehouse.com, a paid site where you can watch videos on the programming languages you want to learn. Ironically, Epicodus gave free treehouse subscriptions to students which I didn't need or use at the time, but I wish I had now that I am not a student). This is not a review of just trying to bash Epicodus or the opposite of saying how awesome they are. I am going to give my entire experience, a lot of it will be good and some of it not so good.
I heard about Epicodus thru someone I had met at a CodeOregon meetup group. I had expressed interest in going to a programming bootcamp and someone at my table told me that she had done a lot of research over the past few months and handed it to me. Being the beneficary of her research, and with Epicodus being the cheapest and connecting students with an internship at the end, I felt this school was the one for me.
When I contacted them, I was excited to find out that they offered a Java/Android class, as I really wanted to make apps. But later, that excitement turned into discouragement because, being a male, I was excluded from that opportunity because they only let women take that class (I don't believe that is the case now, so don't worry Android enthusiasts!!). On a side note, while I think it was a good intention what they were trying to do, make women not feel intimidated to code, but I wish they would have done it when they grew the class out so that men still had a co-ed class to take when women could take the women only class (anyway, end rant). Also, the Ruby class was full (I was told it filled up fast the last few cohorts), so my only option if I were to goto Epicodus was to take the PHP track (I believe they now offer a c# class, but that wasn't availabe in August 2015).
I remember turning in my code challenge and couldn't wait to hear back if I were accepted or not. I kept bothering Audrey, one of Epicodus' employees, if she heard any word back on my acceptance. She probably was sick of hearing from me!! But she was very professional. Looking back now, maybe they accept everybody and make it seem like you have to be approved. I don't know if that is the case or not, but the PHP class didn't quite fill up so maybe they did?
When class finally came, the experience was positive, but it took a lot of learning and it wasn't easy. Programming isn't easy. Well it is easy in the sense that I believe anyone who wants to do it can learn it, but it is tough in the sense having to think like a computer, constant problem solving, and dealing with the frustration when you don't understand why your program isn't running the way it should be. Our class size was almost 60 (I don't think the PHP class acutally completely filled up to 60 but I am not exactly sure), and we had 2 instructors. One of the instructors had a lot of experience in the industry and the other was literally a student from the last PHP cohort. The lack of experience of the other teacher and some of the negativity of some of the students from the ruby class who I talked to made me a little scared in the beginning. But for what I needed the teachers for, which was the motivation to learn and for help when I am stuck, both teachers did great.
While both teachers helped everybody during class time, each teacher got half the class to mentor and talk to individually. Every week, they would sit everybody down individually and privately and ask how things are going. I remember explaining my nervousness every single week of being able to find a jr dev job after the process was over because I heard so much about how the market is flooded with jr devs and it appeared online that most jr dev jobs were asking for 2 years experience. My teacher told me not to worry and that almost all of the students that make it thru to completion end up finding jobs. Although, looking back, I don't know how much I trust their statistic on their website of how many students found jobs after class. I am not saying I know for a fact it is wrong, but I say this because while the three August 2015 cohorts were still in their internship, they updated that stat to include all of us as finding jobs when almost none of us found jobs yet. I wonder how they are coming up with that data when they did that and then after the process was over they didn't even talk to all of us? Please don't misread me, I am not saying they are lying, but I do have doubts about it.
Every week they had a guest speaker come and talk during lunch to whoever wanted to come. I never went to any of the guest speakers because my brain was feeling overloaded doing programming 40 hours a week plus some homework that I wanted a break during lunch hour. Also it didn't help that the speakers always spoke in the ruby class. While everyone is in the same building now, the ruby class was a few blocks down from the php class.
During morning standups, they talked about what that day was going to look like and how the preceeding day went. They also talked about meetups going on in the area, who went to what, what experience they had there, and what meetups were coming up. I feel Epicodus did a great job of giving everybody the opporunity, even to the point of strongly encouraging people, to get connected with the local tech community.
Throughout the weeks and talking to other students, I was very suprised to find out that it seemed like almost every student had moved to Portland from out of state. And from all over the country. Florida, California, New York, Philly (they didn't have a philly school at the time), to new a few places. Many of these people researched boot camps throughout the nation and landed on Epicodus, packed up and moved here. Many were struggling finding housing (there is currently a rental housing shortage in Portland), while others were moving from couch to couch via AirBnB while studying here. I felt lucky as someone to accidentily land on this school doing no research of my own and living in the area (I live in West Linn, so commuting to school everyday wasn't fun for me but I didn't have the housing problem that many had).
They also helped us set up our LinkedIn profile, prepare resumes and cover letters. This was from someone else who specializes in that and was not one of our instructors. Further, our instructors did two mock technical interviews with us. Additionally, on Epicodus' student website that is open to the public (learntoprogram.com), they have a list of things to study and make sure you know before you go out on interviews. I was advised to look at it by my instructor before going on the internship interviews and I sorely regret being lazy and not doing it, because one of the places I really wanted to intern at asked me several of those questions and I did not know the answer. Sad to say they didn't want me, but everything turned out good.
Monday thru Thursday, we pair programmed. Meaning that we would find a partner (the first week they assigned us partners to give us a chance to get to know each other), and we would work on the same computer doing the problem (the computers were huge Macs, I wish I could take one home with me!!). Pair programming was a great experience to learn to explain what you are trying to do in regards to writing your code and/or your plan, because this is what you do in the real world, and it is also a good experience to learn from others and their points of view on the problem. Because there is more than one way to do most problems.
Every Friday was a code review. Instead of pair programming, we were given a problem to do on our own and we had to turn it in to the teacher. The code review was the same type of problem as we learned during the week. The time to ask for help is Monday thru Thursday, because we weren't allowed to ask for help from teachers or other students on Fridays. In fact, after the first week, the teachers didn't even show up on Fridays. For that matter, most students didn't show up on Fridays either, they worked from home. If we failed the code review, we had to turn it in again. The program was very relaxed and you don't need to worry about grades, but you need to make sure you are getting the material if you want to move on. If you are not, the teachers are availabe for extra help.
As I mentioned the teachers there are casual and make the process non intimidating. If you want to take a break, you are more than welcome to do so. Me and my partners had a habit of taking 3 or 4- ten minute breaks each day and it worked out great for us. There was one student in our class who came, laied on the couch all day long and just had his music headphones on. I remember one time the teachers were talking sternly to him that he needs to finish whatever material by the end of that day, but he was an extreme example. That student, by the way, while he finished the class, he did not end up with an internship and he is currently not coding.
Three times throughout the course, we were given a week to pair up into groups and make a group program or app. This was a great experience to learn how to program as a team (which you will be doing when you are actually working in the real world). I definately had problems stepping on the code of others and them to me during this time. I was glad I got this experience during a school environment instead of at work.
Regarding their internship debacle that many other people below have complained about. Yes, it was a setback that many of us didn't get to do internships in Decemeber and had to wait to January. But, I am satisified with the way things turned out and how the company handled it. Let me tell you why. First, early on (I want to say late October but I could be wrong on the date), when it became apparent to Epicodus that there was going to be a shortage of internships for the students, Michael (the owner of Epicodus) was upfront about it and told everybody right away. Next, he gave everybody an option, either take the internship in December as planned or take it January and you can take a free class in December. I am not sure about the other classes, but everybody in the PHP cohort that insisted on doing their internships in December, did their internships in December. There were still lots of internships, just not enough for everybody. And there was more than enough internships in January. I decided to take my internship in January and take an Android class. I really wanted to learn Android and I got the opportunity to make some Apps in December, so it worked out for me.
At the end of the class, they had a Demo Day. Basically, students got to show off a program or app they had to actual employers. Think of it like a job fair in reverse. Instead of the employers setting up a station and the job seekers going to each employer, the students set up a station and got their app up and running to show off, and employers went to them. The location you are at while at this demo day is very important. Some people were overwelmed by the amount of traffic they got while others were lucky to have one or two employers step up to them the entire time. I think I got somewhere in the middle. It is a big room and they had lots of students demoing from all three cohorts. While they segregated us by cohort so employers could go to a section that they wanted to fairly easily, I think it would have been better if they had a demo day for each cohort because I think most employers start out thinking they will see all of the students no matter what type of student they are interested in, and then leave without seeing everybody because there are just too many students for any one employer to look at. It was a great experience, though, there were lots of people there that day, including prosepctive students who wanted to see what the end result was. I noticed they also had students from the prior cohort there who were having a hard time finding a job, also demoing an app. It was comforting to me to see that Epicodus was still involved in the process of helping them find a job even though it had been 4 to 6 months since these people had finished their internship and Epicodus was no longer receving any more money from these students. Actually, as I am typing this I remember a student from the previous ruby cohort that was struggling to find a job, they gave him a free php class to continue bettering his skills to help him out (so he was in our class for 5 weeks). They don't guarantee you will find a job and they don't want to be on the hook for it, but I have noticed, not from them saying anything to me, but from seeing other people they are helping, that they do a lot to help you if you are struggling.
Two of the technologies that the PHP cohort learned was PHP and Drupal (among other things, but they don't pertain to what I am about to say). The ruby cohort learned ruby and rails. The java cohort learned java and android. Rails is a ruby framework. Android is a java framework. Drupal is not a PHP framework, but a CMS. I really wish that they followed the pattern of other cohorts and taught us a PHP framework like Laravel, Codeigniter, or CakePHP, instead of teaching us a CMS like Drupal. I also get that they cannot teach us everything in 3 months.
The internship process started off by giving everybody a list online of all of the companies and a description of what we were going to be doing at each company. We were instructed to assign each company a color indicating if we wanted that company: red (no way!), yellow (meh), or green (please this company!). I think it was a requirement to have a certain number of greens but I don't remember what it was. After turning that in, I got four interviews to go to. Two of the companies I had placed as red and the other two I placed as green. When I went on the red interviews, it made me more convineced I didn't like those companies. One of those companies was a joke amongst the students and others of us we telling our interview stories of that company. I don't believe anybody ended up interning at either of those two companies but I could be wrong. The other two companies I had placed as green and had a positive experience about both interviews (although one of them didn't like me because I wasn't able to answer some of those questions I had mentioned above!!). I made it very clear to Melodie which companies I wanted and was very involved in talking to her about it. She was super helpful and did a great job making both me and the companies happy during this process.
My internship was at Multnomah County (one of the companies I placed as green). We were part of the process that built their bridge app that tells the public if one of the four county owned bridges (hawthorne, morrision, broadway, and burnside bridges) were either up or down. I worked on their drupal backend. It was a great experience to learn to work with a dev team while not too intimidating because there was another student intern from my PHP class (this is by design, Epicodus requires companies to take at least two students so we can feel more comfortable being together. Epicodus really wants to make people not feel too intimidated and it shows but a lot of what they do).
I learned a lot from this experience at the county and it helped me to get my first dev job, which I got my first dev job from the epicodus jr dev job board that they compile from many different sources. The specific dev job I got was put on that board because the employer called Epicodus and said they had a good experience with prior Epicodus students so they wanted to hire another one. This employer didn't even post the job on any job boards. I had only worked at this job for three months because of something bad that happened to his business, but I got some good PHP experience on the job (also working with the PHP framework: Laravel). My second job I got from knowing a student from the ruby cohort, which I met that student at the Epicodus demo day (and knowing Laravel helped me get that job too). Do you see a theme there? It is very important to be connected in this industry. Epicodus does teach you to code, but they also help you to get connected. They don't make you do this, if you do not take them up on things you will not be connected and have a harder time. This will not be Epicodus' fault, but your own.
The school obviously had growing pains. As any business that doubles or triples in size, it is expected that they do not do everything perfectly. But they still treated me good, taught me to code, and helped me find a job, which is all I needed. And for $3400 (they might be a little bit more now), that is dirt cheap. At the time, I was told that other Portland code schools were charging $8k-10k (which I think they are a little more now too, maybe closer to $12k).
Another thing I wish to mention, during the time of my classes, another code school in Portland closed down. They did so without telling anybody over night. The teachers came to school surprised their keys didn't work. Many people who paid a much higher price than me (because that school costed more) now found that they didn't have anymore classes. Epicodus provided facilities for their teachers and students to still conduct class but over at Epicodus. It really made me feel proud to go to a school that would help out a competitor like that.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Anonymous • Android Developer • Graduate • Course: Android • Campus: Portland
I was a part of the first Android cohort. My class should've been advertised as a trial run because that's what it felt like most of the way through. Our Android curriculum was incomplete - it was literally just not there. At least a third of the class dropped out. Our teacher left after the first 2 months and Michael (who runs Epicodus) became our teacher, except he had no working knowledge of Android and was also clearly distracted since he runs the entire program. We considered asking for a refund for the Android portion of our course because it felt like there was no structure whatsoever at this point. I understand that Epicodus stresses independant learning, but the whole entire course should not be a free-for-all.
We were informed half through that there weren't enough internships for everyone in the class, and a number of students had to wait for a "second round" of internships. A lot of people were unhappy with their internships. I've heard from cohorts since mine (including current Epicodus interns that interning where I ended up getting a job) that the internship selection has been pretty junky still - lots of companies canceling at the last minute because of communication issues.
Most importantly, I would like to suggest that prospective Epicodus students take reviews written by graduates from 2015 and earlier with a grain of salt: there are still jobs for junior devs, but there are many, MANY more job-seeking bootcamp grads than there used to be. The demand is not quite so high as it used to be.
Positives of my experience: having a group of people I graduated with that now serve as a very helpful network/support system. My first teacher Jake Kaad was great, but he was frustrated with the curriculum and also found a better job. I did indeed end up getting hired from my internship, but I had won a scholarship from the company that I interned with and because of this, I had a bit of an advantage from the start.
Epicodus could be great, and I can't speak to the current curriculum. I would suggest that people considering Epicodus try to reach out to recent grads on LinkedIn.
Response From: Michael Kaiser-Nyman of EpicodusTitle: PresidentTuesday, Jul 19 2016Thanks for sharing your your experience here. I think this was a unique situation with a teacher who didn't come through, and we've also come a long way to address the issues you've described.
One of the things that we struggled with last year at Epicodus was students who passed our pre-class coding challenge to gain entrance to the class but did not really understand the code they submitted. As we grew from 60 students at the beginning of 2015 to 150 at the end, what started as an issue for a small number of people became a much larger problem. As you mention, we had a relatively high drop-out rate in your class, because many of the students started without the fundamentals they needed from their pre-class work.
Now, we've scrapped our pre-class work in favor of assuming that all students have little or no coding background and extending our course by 5 weeks to cover all of those introductory topics that used to be pre-work. This has worked out much better for our students' success.
I disagree with your characterization of your class's structure. When I came in to teach, I discovered that the first teacher did not provide the proper feedback to struggling students letting them know that they were not on track. It's a tough thing to tell someone who's working hard that they aren't succeeding, but if you never tell a student that, they just get further and further off. I had frank discussions with multiple students about their prospects for success given where they were at when I came in. In the end, I had to manage a class of students with a wide range of skills, many of whom disregarded my guidance about what to work on.
Now, we've standardized our assessment process so that teachers have more accountability to fail students when it's the right thing to do. When students don't pass their assessments, we no longer let them continue on - we've found that the tough love of helping them move on is really the best outcome.
I'm also surprised to hear you say that the first teacher was "frustrated with the curriculum" - he in fact developed it, it was of very variable quality, and I had to re-write much of it as the class went on.
Now, our curriculum development process is centralized, so that all of the teaching materials meet the same quality standards.
As for internships, we made the mistake of trying to line up internships in December, when your class ended. While we were able to find internships for many of our students, many companies didn't have the capacity for mentorship during the holiday season, and asked to postpone until January. We gave all of the students in your class the option to take a free extra month of class followed by a January internship, which over half chose.
Now, we don't do December internships :) And while there are always a couple companies who drop out of our internship program at the last minute, we're working hard to find more ways to communicate to them how harmful that is to the students they've agreed to take, and figure out how to have backup options if a company does drop out.
In short, your class was a bit of a perfect storm: a large number of underprepared students, a teacher who didn't do a great job building curriculum or giving feedback to struggling students, and internships that we tried to start too close to the holidays. Since then, we've made our class longer so that we can teach the basics in person, we've strengthened our curriculum development and student assessment, and improved our internship scheduling.
I'd be the last person to say that Epicodus is perfect or doesn't have room to grow. We've improved the quality of our education since you attended, and we'll continue to learn from our experience and keep improving.
- Great way to learn how coding!- 7/13/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Portland
I loved the environment at Epicodus. It's a combination of providing a good structure for learning on your own and reinforcing that knowledge with others. Nobody gets left behind and nobody gets too far ahead. So you're either learning because peers are helping, or because you're teaching peers. At the same time, you get tons of hands on experience while building apps. In general this place gave me a great platform to learn how to program. That along with hard work and some persistence opens the doors to a great career in programming!