Job preparation is integrated into the curriculum, and students will build an online presence, resume and LinkedIn profile by graduation. Hack Reactor places alumni in mid-to-senior level positions at companies in tech, including Google, Salesforce & Microsoft, with an average graduate salary of $105K (2017 San Francisco student outcomes survey; 81% survey response rate).
Recent Hack Reactor Reviews: Rating 4.7
Recent Hack Reactor News
- June 2020 Coding Bootcamp News
- Coding Bootcamps + COVID-19: Updates, Scholarships and Tips for Learning Online
- How Kevin Landed a Job at Google after Hack Reactor
In PersonFull Time40 Hours/week12 Weeks
Start Date None scheduled Cost $17,980 Class size N/A Location Denver, Seattle, Phoenix, Boulder, New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, San Francisco, OnlineThe Hack Reactor immersive coding bootcamp is focused on building autonomous, fully capable software engineers. Every unit in our curriculum has been pored over numerous times to optimize for educational power and efficiency. The first half of the course is often described as “drinking from a firehose” because of how much information it packs in. In the second half, you use your new skills to build projects, while learning new technologies on the fly. By the end you will be an autonomous engineer, capable of tackling unique, unfamiliar problems and building complex applications.
Deposit After you have been accepted, a small deposit is required in order to secure your spot in the class. Financing Tuition Plans Financing options are available. Refund / Guarantee No Scholarship $1.3MM Hack Reactor Scholarship Fund - visit www.hackreactor.com/scholarships to apply!
OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week36 Weeks
Start Date None scheduled Cost $17,980 Class size N/A Location OnlineLearn full-stack engineering over nine months. Same Hack Reactor curriculum, program and quality - no need to quit your job. Class is held live online with two weeknights and one half-Saturday per week plus required independent study.
Deposit After you have been accepted, a small deposit is required in order to secure your spot in the class. Financing Tuition Plans Applicants who would otherwise be unable to attend Hack Reactor may split their tuition into installments and finish paying a portion of tuition up to six months after graduation. Refund / Guarantee No Scholarship $1.3MM Hack Reactor Scholarship Fund - visit www.hackreactor.com/scholarships to apply!
Hack Reactor Reviews
282 reviews sorted by:
- Amazing Experience- 7/13/2017Doris Chiu • Graduate • Course: Hack Reactor • Campus: Austin • Verified via LinkedIn
I had chosen Hack Reactor (Makersquare at the time I was introduced to it) after hearing about it through at least two of my friends in the Software Industry. I had originally considered getting a degree from a university and was working towards that at a community college. But when I heard about this program and it's amazing reputation in the industry, I decided to go this route. By the time I enrolled at HR, I had taken an Introduction to Programming course (coded in Python) at a community college to see if I like programming before committing. The knowledge I gained from the course helped me through the prep and the first week or two of the programming, after that it was an unfamiliar, challenging but exciting territory.
Hack Reactor is great for learning programming and about yourself as an individual. This intensive 12-week program is great for those that are able to pick up things after doing the hands-on learning for 2 days and then pivot to another concept afterward. Although this type of learning style may take some adjusting on your part, after this section (first six weeks) is over, you will have a pretty good idea about how you learn as a student and how much research/practice you as an individual needs in order to understand a concept or new technology. Moving into the second half of the program, you'll be put into teams of 3-5 to work on building apps. Here, you're able to work on teamwork skills such as communication, organization, accountability, and problem solving as a group. You'll learn how to balance each team member's style of work and personality as you're going through this process.
Overall, my experience at Hack Reactor was amazing and I would definitely recommend it for prospective students!
- Worth it- 6/30/2017Guillermo Blanco • Student • Course: Hack Reactor • Campus: Austin • Verified via GitHub
If you want to start a career in web development, Hack Reactor is a great and easy way to do it. That doesn't mean the curriculum is easy, all I am saying is that once you get in, all you have to do is breathe, eat and dream code, and you will get your dream job, an awesome peer network, lifetime job assistance and a great increase in your salary (about 300% in my case, although of course it depends on your initial salary, duh).
When I started Hack Reactor, I had some academic programming experience with C++, but had spent the previous 2 years and change working at Burger King, Papa John's, etc. On top of that my English wasn't good since my native tongue is Spanish.
The decision is clear: if you go to college, you will spend much more money and for things like History, English, Calculus, Simulation, Combinatorics, and others that, although interesting, you don't really need as a web developer; if you want to teach yourself, aside from the fact that you wouldn't really know what to learn, since you have limited access to the industry trends, you will spend much more time, time during which you could be making a lot of money in a real job. If you go to a bootcamp, you need to choose Hack Reactor, since it is the best.
- Awesome Experience, Awesome Community- 6/16/2017Yuriy Lemberg • Graduate • Course: Hack Reactor • Campus: Los Angeles • Verified via GitHub
My experience at Hack Reactor was fun, informative, hectic, engaging, depressing, rewarding, and a range of even more emotions. The 3 months 11 hour a day, 6 day a week immersive was everything I could've asked for and more. I wanted a program that would challenge me and it did that every step of the way. On top of that probably the best part of the experience was having a friendly and engaging community that was struggling at the same steps that I was.
Probably the most rewarding part of the experience was bouncing ideas off other students. I not only learned through my own progression but learn through other students progression as well. During the program, there wasn't an hour where I didn't learn something new by communicating with other engineers. And I think that's the great power of Hack Reactor. There are a wealth of technically strong and extremely helping engineers always around you. You still have to put in the work but it helps the motivation to be able to talk with other people around you with the same pain points as you and figuring out the solution together.
The program isn't for everybody, it's rigorous, technically challenging, and you have to work well with people. But I am forever grateful for my entire time at the program and wouldn't change my process of the program in a single way.
- Alonzo Alden • Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via LinkedIn
I've now been employed as a Software Engineer for 1 month, and things are going better than expected...
A couple of months later after having been rejected previously for the Hack Reactor Immersive, I managed to get in with tons of codewars practice. It was a hard interview to pass but getting rejected/failing the first time helped me mentally prepare for success. Hack Reactor is big on this ideology.
On the second half of the program, theres a big focus on the job market and how to take software engineering interviews. The support is excellent and you get lots of practice. You also get support from a whole team dedicated to the job search after the program.
The atmosphere is great. The staff does a great job at trying to maintain a certain vibe which revolves around positivity. Because of the nature of having to constantly pair program, I was able to adapt better soft skills and communication.
Overall, if you're truly commited into changing your life 180 degrees be a software engineer, this course is for you. It helps to come in with empathy and an open mind. The cirricculum updates often as does the industry, and Hack Reactor does a great job and keeping up to date with industry standards.
- Front-end Software Engineer- 5/29/2017Eric F. • Front-end Developer • Graduate • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via Linkedin
I came into Hack Reactor with no real professional software engineering experience. I came out in 1.5 months with a full-time position and a great salary.
I attended the Remote course and it was the most challenging few months of my life. In order to get the most out of this course you will have to set your comfort to the side. With that said, three months is a pretty short investment for the payoff.
Expect to be humbled in a big way. You probably won't be the most techincally apt person in the course and that's a good thing. You will be pushed and challenged more and get more value from the course if you have to struggle to stay afloat a bit.
I also weighed doing the on-site program with doing the remote program. For me, I had a set-up that worked well for the remote program. The only thing tough about the remote program is that it can be isolating if you don't make an effort to interact with your classmates. In that way, I think it could be even more challenging than the on-site program at times.
Like I said before, this course is extremely intense. For most Hack Reactor graduates, their job after will be much less demanding than the course itself. Understand this going in and you can set yourself up for great things in a short amount of time. Good luck!
- Absolutely Worth It- 5/3/2017Ryo Wheatley • React Developer • Graduate • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via LinkedIn
Hack Reactor is a daunting undertaking, to say the least. My experience was probably similar to many people out there - the novice programmer, the excitement of building and creating slowly budding in my chest as I explored the surface of programming, growing more enthralled with each new step I took into this marvelous new land until I finally decided to make that dreaded 66/hr a week/3 month plunge. It was exciting, but utterly terrifying, and I had no idea whether I was really going to be able to do it or not.
I've been out of Hack Reactor for 8 months (wow, that's a lot longer than I thought!) at the time of writing this review, and I can honestly say it was the best decision I have ever made. I am happily working in my preferred field, with my preferred techs, and I'm loving every minute of it. And I wouldn't have been able to do it without Hack Reactor.
Now, the school is not exactly what some might think. Those 3 months are not about cramming as many technologies into your head as they can manage, though they certainly do that. It's not about teaching the fundamentals of programming, or design, or data structures. It's about making you a good programmer.
Well, what the heck does that mean, right? Isn't a good programmer someone who knows the technologies?
Oh, it's so much more than that. What Hack Reactor does, better than any other school I've seen, is teach you to learn on the fly. This isn't some Business degree, where you learn the tools you're going to need for the rest of your career, and the rest is up to your own ingenuity. No. Programming is constantly changing, remolding itself, producing new tools and technologies that you need to learn at lightning speed. Just the other day I was handed a project to work on using a technology I had never touched before. And I knew I could do it.
Hack Reactor gave me confidence in my ability to grow and expand in whatever role I was given. Their teaching methods are rough, to be sure. This is not a school that you can float through on minimal effort. And you're not going to be spending just 66 hours a week on this, to be sure - not if you're going to truly experience the course. But that forced work ethic, the speed of the course, the amount of work that is asked of you - it drowns you in the material you're being taught. And if you're really trying, then it's impossible to not absorb it.
You have to be willing to put in the time and effort. You cannot expect the school to do everything for you, though they do everything they can to make sure you have no choice but to immerse yourself. If the idea of spending every waking moment on coding and learning and problem solving is tiring to you, if you cannot stand to be separate from your family for extended periods of time, if you cannot miss your weekly double movie nights out with your friends - then this is not the course for you.
If you are willing to put forth that effort, then you will be rewarded with the staff's unyielding patience and support. Every step of the way, I had support from numerous staff members, who were always there to offer help when I asked for it, and truly seemed to care about my success in the course.
Now there is a fair chance that I was simply lucky in the staff that I got. Every person is different, and it's entirely possible that some of the staff is not up to the standards that I experienced. But I can only write this review based off of what I went through, and the people I was lucky enough to be involed with.
As for other pluses of the school, the community was incredible. You will know everyone in your cohort by week 6, and many of these friendships can stay far beyond. I've made several very close friendships from my cohort, and I know that I can turn to them anytime I need them. Many of us work with fellow grads, with companies that were impressed after hiring their first Hack Reactor student and who decided to keep hiring. The staff does a great job of building a fun culture, with regular events to help ease the stress of the workload.
I would also say that the technologies they teach are fantastic choices for making any student an enticing job candidate. My company was ecstatic at my React knowledge, compounded with the other techs I had to back up my strength there. They know that if they have a problem anywhere in the stack, there's a good chance I could help them with it.
Above all, they gave me an experience that translated well into my new job. It wasn't like back in college, where I came out of my biology studies with no idea what my work would actually look like. Every thing they do is catered to the kind of pattern you'll be following in your everyday life in your new career, and though the job search, and starting a new job, are still daunting, it was incredibly easy to settle into my new role.
This may have come off as an overlong love poem to the school, but I honestly believe I could not have gotten where I am now without Hack Reactor. The support was incredible, and extends to this day. And I know if I need them, they'll still be there to help me. Not because their obligated to, but because they care.
So take this for what it's worth. If you're willing to stick with it, if you're willing to throw your all into this program, it can change your life.
- Daniel Chang • Software Developer • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via LinkedIn
I recently graduated from Hack Reactor Remote. I will say, I didn’t expect to learn so much through the process. If I had known, I would have made the jump instead of letting life situations somewhat force me into it.
I was an Applied Math major at UC Berkeley, but ended up going down a more business oriented route. I got into online and mobiles games at an early stage and was able to progress pretty decently in my career through that. Still, I always had a passion for building things and if a few things had gone a bit differently would probably have ended up being an engineer down a different path.
Unfortunately that didn’t happen, but I kept wanting to make the switch. Of course I gave myself the same excuses; switching careers is a pretty big risk, I’m too old (mid 30’s), etc.
Fast forward many years, many things happen but I find myself in a position where I’m considering some bootcamps. After a lot of research, I narrowed down my choices to App Academy and Hack Reactor.
Why Hack Reactor
I got accepted to both App Academy and Hack Reactor Remote (didn’t actually finish the application to Hack Reactor onsite because of scheduling). Ultimately I chose Hack Reactor Remote for two reasons (keep in mind this is before starting the program). (1) It was remote and (2) six days a week.
I was initially concerned that I wouldn’t feel as connected with my cohort mates because it was remote, but Hack Reactor does a great job of providing an awesome space to build connections and friendships with others you’re learning with. Also for me personally I’m super open to moving away from the SF Bay Area in the future, so it’s nice to have built relationships with people in other regions.
On top of that, by being remote I saved a good 2 hours a day on commuting. Now, if you are moving to a new city to go do a bootcamp, this probably isn’t a concern for you but it was a realistic concern for me.
When I first heard that Hack Reactor was 6 days a week, I was honestly kind of turned off. As I thought more about it though, If I’m paying for this opportunity (and you are paying even with bootcamps that take a percentage later on), I best get the most out of it. The entire course is only 12 weeks long to begin with, that extra day per week does come in handy.
Material & Learning
Hack Reactor doesn’t just teach you how to code, but they teach you how to become a Software Engineer others want to hire and work with. With that, they teach how you mindsets and mentality needed to grow as a Software Engineer for now just your first job afterwards, but second, third, etc.
Hands down, you are going to learn so much.
This isn’t for everyone. Getting in itself a pretty decent challenge. Unless you already have a good backround, be prepared to put in work just to get in. Once you’re in, it continues to get hard. I’ve been in long hour, high stress work situations but nothing really compared to the mental challenge this program was. The plus side is when you come out of it, you know you can take anything on.
It isn’t for everyone. The only promise is you will get out of this what you put in. If you are not willing to put in the work before, during, AND after the program, it may not be for you. However if you are serious about moving into or leveling up your Software Engineering game then there is no better place.
- Emily Jones • Frontend Engineer • Graduate • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via LinkedIn
I graduated in September from the Hack Reactor Remote program. Since then I’ve been an HiR doing personal tech coaching and interviews, and I recently accepted a fantastic offer from a really cool company.
I really can’t recommend HR enough. What really stood out to me early and often was the amount and quality of the career education and support. I attended a reasonably good 4-year public university and never received anything near the quality or quantity of fantastic career support as I have at Hack Reactor. Even early in the course, there are lectures going over the qualities that make a successful software engineer, what to expect, how to navigate the job market, how to market yourself, etc. Then, once you’ve graduated you’ll receive amazing continued job support. When I got my offer, I took it to my fantastic career coach and she helped me with the negotiation process. Negotiating is really hard for me, but she coached me through it, helping me script questions and responses so that my nerves wouldn’t overtake me during the negotiation. We did mock negotiations with role-playing so I could get used to phrasing the sentences correctly. Ultimately I negotiated an already great offer up a bit, and I was happy to accept at that point. I cannot put into words how valuable this is, what’s the good of learning the skills if you can’t get past the application process? Hack Reactor gets people’s butts in jobs, and that’s partly due to the fantastic career coaching and outcomes team who help you put the cherry on top.
They’ll also help you A LOT with resume writing. That’s also the bane of my existence, but with their coaching and help I produced a fantastic resume that got me in to a phone screen easily with several companies. I didn’t even need to attend the last week of the program (since I got a job :D) that goes really intensely over writing cover letters, resume review, job application support and white boarding practice.
Ok, aside from the job stuff, the quality of the course is amazing. You’re working on functioning code bases, mostly to add new features or implement required ones. You’re building web apps from day 1 (Ok, maybe not until day 7 when the sprints start). You are really plunged into the deep end from day one and forced to swim. Be warned: you must be an autonomous person who is goal oriented to take this course. Yes, there is guidance and structure, but it’s ultimately up to you to get what you need done to succeed in the course. There will invariably be extra work you need to do outside of class in order to keep up since it is so fast-paced.
I found the sprints challenging, but not overly-so. I found week 4 to be particularly challenging, and really doubted my skills, but the counseling and tech mentors helped me get where I needed to be. It seems crazy that 12 weeks is enough to get people all the skills they need to succeed, but I found that it was more than sufficient to get me into a job. I was even a bit over-prepared. I barely sent out applications; I applied for one, and was asked to interview for a second that I met at a job fair who had seen my resume. I received an offer from both, and ultimately went with the first one that I had applied to. I’m still completely astounded at how easy, painless and quick the job search was, but that’s because I was impeccably prepared and supported throughout (mix some dumb luck in there too). Granted, the jobs I applied for were both to startups, who value more practical skills to get you in the door. I didn’t have to do any white boarding or algorithm problems, just really practical stuff that I found (frankly) really easy.
By and large, your classmates will be fantastic. Hack Reactor goes to great lengths to make sure it admits people who are not only intellectually capable of the rigorous pace and difficult concepts, but those who will be enjoyable to collaborate with. I had so many helpful classmates that made a huge impact on my success in the course.
I would recommend that if you take the course, you set up after-hours study groups early and often. They were instrumental in helping me understand the material.
I’m a female in tech which isn’t always easy, but the support I received from Hack Reactor makes that much easier. I’ll be the first female engineer at my new job. If you’re wondering if you’ll be a good fit for Hack Reactor specifically because you’re a woman/unconfident about your skills or your ability, don’t worry. If you can get into Hack Reactor and get past the pre-course work, you’ve got what it takes to succeed in the program and on the job. You might be judged by dumb guys from time to time, but that just helps you build up a thick skin. For the most part everyone has been great.
This course is HARD and it will kick your ass. But (at least in my case) you might go from zero coding knowledge, to teaching yourself coding, to Hack Reactor, to an amazing job in less than a year. I can confidently say it was the absolute best decision I have ever made in my life, as well as the hardest thing I have ever done. I am incredibly grateful not only to the founders for starting the school, but to all the tech mentors, counselors, coordinators and cohort mates who put in so much hard work and care to make the program amazing.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll do my best to respond.
Unbeatable job support, insane value for the money, challenging but doable sprints, awesome cohort mates, fantastic tech and morale support/mentoring, insane outcomes (yes, those numbers are accurate). The most difficult thing I have ever done, and the best decision I have ever made. DOOO IIIT! IT WORKS! Regarding a few negative reviews I have read... really? 98% employment after 6 months is not impressive? Do you have any idea what the rate is for a 4 year college? I went to college and NEVER got a job in what I studied, let alone 6 months later.
And yes, there's a lot of self-teaching during the program -- they're trying not to set you up to need your hand held through every bit of code you have to work with. I've been working as professional frontend engineer for 6 months now, and I can say that the real world is very similar to how life feels at hack reactor -- you're thrown into an unfamiliar situation, without any expertise about the code, and you need to figure out how to find your way out of the problem. I'm grateful that they didn't hold my hand through the course-- it would have been a rude awakening to move into the job and suddenly have little support and no skills to figure things out by myself.
- Beyond 5 star experience- 5/3/2017Alexander Leo • Full Stack Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Remote Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: Online • Verified via LinkedIn
Like you, I was extremely skeptical of attending a programming bootcamp. The thought of it just seemed way to good to be true, there had to be a catch, and there is one. The catch is hard work. The only way to achieve success at a bootcamp is the same way you achieve success anywhere else: putting in 100% effort and persevering. I was unsure of the remote experience and whether I would like the structure of the class or not, so I attended the remote prep program. The prep course was worth the money and gave me a great preview of what the Hack Reactor environment felt like and I loved it. I wasn't sure if the full program would be worth the money (spoiler alert it TOTALLY was) or that it would really be enough education to get me a job with zero experience. I read dozens of reviews from alumni saying that Hack Reactor was the best choice they ever made. Finally, I decided to go for it, got accepted, and never looked back.
I got an amazing job, thanks to the skills I picked up during my time at Hack Reactor. Some of these non-technical skills include writing a resume, how to ace job interviews, and tips on how to be effecting during the job search. I was able to get an amazing job, that I still love, at a very reputable company. Hack Reactor prepared me extremely well for the path that lay ahead after I left the program. I still tell everyone I meet how much I love Hack Reactor and what a great experience it was. The education that Hack Reactor provides is so impressive and it was doubly as apparent once I was on the job able to keep up with experienced engineers.
All of the team members and management I interact with at my current job are honestly quite amazed at the efficacy of the program and the amount I was able to learn in 3 months.
Hack Reactor is by and far an amazing overall experience, and I would go back and do it all over again if I could.
- Totally Worth Every Minute!- 4/18/2017Michelle Carter • Software Developer • Graduate • Course: Hack Reactor • Campus: New York City • Verified via LinkedIn
I was part of the Hack Reactor NYC campus cohort #5 (HRNYC5) that finished in March 2017. I think most people who will read this review are considering a career change on some level. I was in your shoes about a year ago. Whatever brought you to the point in life where you are looking at leaving your safe but unsatisfactory current circumstances and spending a LOT of money and time on an entirely new adventure. I have one thing to say to you. DO IT!
Before I left for NYC, I decided to apply to Hack Reactor for a throw-away practice application. I did, as expected, fail. Quite well, actually. But I was completely impressed with the HiR who handled my interview, and with his willingness to spend time with me, teach me, and encourage me even though I was so clearly not ready for a Hack Reactor bootcamp experience. While in NYC, I decided to take a second look and took a few tours at the then MakerSquare(made the name change to Hack Reactor around October 2016) campus. I also asked to sit in on a lecture and they said that was okay too. I tried that at FullStack and was told no I would disrupt the class.
The story was only beginning there. Hack Reactor is constantly working to improve their curriculum and nurture new learners, so they invited me to participate in multiple pilot programs. I was offered 4 weeks worth of mentoring sessions with an HiR, and also got the chance to participate in 2 phases of Intensive study groups that became the current remote prep program they now offer partially for free. All of this was at no cost to me, and gave me the opportunity to interact with many different people in different capacities. Never. One. Negative. Experience.
So it took some extra work and a little extra time, but I eventually found myself accepted to Hack Reactor NYC and started in December 2016.
The team at the NYC campus is fantastic. From Jeff the counselor, whose job it is to keep you from losing your mind while you work through the hardest 3 months of your life, to Joseph the supersmart primary instructor for the first half and John, the king of Tech Mentoring and then all the different HiRs along the way, every single person is helpful, willing to teach, supportive, and has your best interest at the heart of their decisions.
You don't spend 66+ hrs per week for 3 months with people without some drama and conflict along the way, but that turns into this crazy side benefit of the experience. You are working to change your life around entirely and along the way you make a group of friends who shared this intensity with you.
The Hack Reactor experience does not stop on graduation day. There is a very well-built out curriculum and program for supporting you throughout the job search. I have found the Outcomes Team to be every bit as concerned for me and what is best for me as everyone else. There are cynics out there who will not believe me and won't trust that HR's #1 motivation is the individual student, but I have zero evidence to the contrary.
I have a new career as a software developer! I will be starting my first full-time job in the next week or two, about 6 weeks after leaving the program. If you are thinking about it, look very hard at HRNYC and trust that these folks are the real deal.
- Richard Boothe • Software Engineer • Graduate • Course: Hack Reactor • Campus: Austin • Verified via LinkedIn
Let’s begin by getting the dirty details out of the way to relieve some curiosity. I’m going to attempt to give those who are looking for an honest and insightful review a full understanding of my perspective, so they can possibly make an informed decision about their future. I’d first like to present some facts about me, since it seems to be relevant for the sake of context when reviewing the opinions, perspective, and respective nature of those providing reviews provided here or anywhere for that matter. My name is Richard Boothe, I attended Hack Reactor in Austin during the cohort of 2016 that went from February to May. During my time as a student I decided that I’d like to be a Technical Fellow/Hacker in Residence, and thus went on to do so at the New York campus from June to September of the same year. After my time at Hack Reactor it took me 5 weeks to find a job in web development, my salary is above the average of Hack Reactor graduates.
As of the writing of this review, I am working for both Ksquare Solutions Inc. and also the Boy Scouts of America in Irving,TX as a Senior UI Developer/Software Engineering Contractor respectively. I am 33 years old and before attending Hack Reactor was a bartender/bar manager for 10 years. Hopefully that’s enough info for you to find me on LinkedIn if you’d like to ask questions or just want to absolutely know I’m not a fake person like a majority of the anonymous one-star reviews seem to suggest.
My experience in regard to software and web development prior to Hack Reactor was limited entirely to Team Treehouse, Code Academy and Coderbyte. I had discovered that I really enjoyed the algorithmic nature of solving problems and was tired of my career behind the bar, so I began researching bootcamps and university options two years prior to my time as a student. The majority of programs at that time were advertising a 0-60 acceleration in learning, meaning having an absolutely zero amount of knowledge in the field of web development to knowing enough to get a junior level job. Meanwhile Hack Reactor advertised an education that would accelerate future web developers with a 20-120 acceleration, leaving their graduates at a mid to senior level upon entering job search. Furthermore, at the time none of these programs offered outcomes assistance besides Hack Reactor, which was a selling point for me for the obvious reason of avoiding retreating back to the bar scene after investing the admitted high cost of a bootcamp like program. I decided completely against the idea of investing in a University program upon realizing it would cost me a minimum of $80,000.
I decided on Hack Reactor for a seven reasons.
- First, I looked at the reviews on sites like Course Report and Google just as you are today.
- Secondly, I appreciated the honesty that was provided in regard to the level of understanding in coding/analytical thinking that was necessary to attend and succeed at their program, I will address this further later.
- Fourth, their is an emphasis on acquiring soft skills and learning to pair program. This skill has provided me with an enriched ability to communicate in an amicable and concise manner with my peers at work that has absolutely helped me advance quickly in my career.
- Fifth, the continued enrichment of the program keeps the topics fresh. I’ve read a few of these reviews that speak about how some of the instructional videos are old. Yet the concepts and the technology hasn’t changed in the last two years, at all. I'll discuss ES6 momentarily.
- Sixth, Hack Reactor enforces the basics first. This is the entire reason for the first six weeks.
- Seven and most importantly, Hack Reactor provides a community feel that inspires a drive to learn. This was crucial to my success during times when I felt overwhelmed or frustrated with my progress.
As a prospective student, an actual student, and later a Hacker In Residence, I never felt that any of those reasons were abandoned or less than what was originally presented.
Hack Reactor is *NOT* a bootcamp for students looking for an easy ride into a six-figure job, it never has been. Furthermore, it is not a program that one can easily jump into without prior experience and exit with a maximum gain. For this reason I warn anyone attempting to game the admissions program that you are doing yourself a huge disservice. If you review some of the poor reviews, you will notice a trend that most of those students providing 1 star reviews had failed the admissions program several times, or had ‘memorized the admissions requirements’ rather than take the time to learn the concepts that are recommended for admittance.
It took me a year to get to a point where I felt confident enough to take the admissions interview, and that was after performing self-study with the concepts of conditional statements, scope, closures and higher-order functions. For those that gamed the system and feel cheated, I feel sympathy for you but also wonder what you expected when time and again the expectations presented before admittance and during the cohort were that you needed to have a fundamental understanding to succeed. The reason Hack Reactor focuses so heavily on fundamentals to reinforce the understanding that students should already have is to insure that more advanced topics like frameworks, API creation and consumption, data manipulation, and database structures can be taught. FYI, the admissions system has been changed to avoid unknowingly allowing students into the program that are not yet ready. So while learning the concepts of higher order functions such as each/map/filter/reduce is great and will help you be a better developer, memorizing how to type those functions out without knowing the reason for the code will probably be a waste of time.
My thoughts on the program overall are great obviously, I rated everything five stars across the board for a reason right? The instructor Gilbert answered any and all questions I ever had about the content of the curriculum, and always did so humbly and with patience. My Technical Mentors/Hackers In Residence were always willing to help me reason about toy problems, or help me find break-throughs in my understanding. Of course there is the chance that I got lucky with a great group of folks as mentors and instructors, but given the nature of the Hack Reactor program, and my experiences at two separate campuses, I highly doubt it. Linden, my wonderful and amazing counselor was a godsend at times I felt overwhelmed and disheartened about my self-confidence in regard to my own progress. The support of a student counselor is one that is not mentioned very often in regard to the reviews on Hack Reactor and it should be, this role is crucial to the students having an ear to speak to and a voice to listen to. Shout out to Jeff in NYC for being equally amazing!
During my time as a student I decided I wanted to be a Hacker In Residence as I have always enjoyed teaching, and also wanted to enrich my understanding of more advanced concepts in web development. This decision, which frustratingly, insultingly, and inaccurately has been posted in prior reviews was not due to a lack of ability to acquire gainful employment, but rather a desire to teach and further my understanding in advanced topics related to web development. The Hacker in Residence program is something that students apply for during their time as students, not during their job search or after they "decide they can’t get a job". If you are reading this and decide to attend Hack Reactor, I highly encourage you to apply for this position as it is incredibly rewarding on so many levels, I’ll spare the details as that’s a different topic all together.
Lastly, the community that I still engage with today is one that continues to grow and flourish as I carry on with coding and my career. I am extremely grateful and proud of the accomplishments I have achieved because I am aware of how difficult the task was, and is. And with that I’d like you to keep that in mind when making an investment in Hack Reactor, as with any life changing decision for yourself. Most things worth doing of any magnitude are not simple, or easy, or quick. Don’t try to cheat the experience. If you really want to invest in something, attack the goal with a hundred percent. Please reach out to me if you’d like, and thanks for reading the novel ;)
- So worth it! -- 4.5 years later- 6/15/2020Alon R. • Software Engineer • Student • Course: Full-Time Software Engineering Immersive • Campus: OnlineI went to Hack Reactor Remote Beta in the fall of 2015. I had no coding background and it was one of the hardest, and most rewarding things I've done. We worked 6 days a week, 11+ hours a day (a lot more during project phase). I graduated in December of 2015 and became a Hacker in Residence for a few months before starting my job search. I was able to land a job in about 2 months.
When I came on the job, I expected it to be just like Hack Reactor, long days, very heads down. What I realized though, was that Hack Reactor made doing my job very easy. Since I was used to working so hard and having to solve unknown issues quickly to make it through, getting in on my first corporate job was pretty smooth sailing. I felt confident that whatever they gave me, I could figure out. It is still like that to this day. The skills I learned at Hack Reactor have translated into every area of my life!
I went from working menial jobs to a high paid software career extremely quickly and I'm so grateful. My career coach was amazing, the community of alumni is amazing, and I would recommend to anyone looking to get into the field quickly. You can absolutely learn on your own, but I found that the instruction and community was top notch and gave me a leg up on the job.