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Hack Reactor

Austin, Denver, Los Angeles, New York City, Online, San Francisco, Seattle

Hack Reactor

Avg Rating:4.72 ( 319 reviews )

Founded in 2012, Hack Reactor is a code school that provides immersive full-time and part-time coding programs online and in-person at campuses in San Francisco, Austin, Los Angeles, Denver, Seattle, and New York City. Hack Reactor’s bootcamps include a 12-week Software Engineering Immersive, a 36-week Part-Time Software Engineering Immersive, and a 19-week Software Engineering Immersive with JavaScript and Python. Led by passionate and experienced instructors, engineers, and career advisors, Hack Reactor graduates become job-ready software engineers that companies want to hire. Hack Reactor coding bootcamps are challenging, life-changing, and designed to fit a student’s schedule and skill level. Hack Reactor trains students using a computer science and coding curriculum that models the exciting work being done in the software engineering industry. 

Applicants to the 12-week and 36-week Software Engineering Immersives will need to pass a Technical Admissions Assessment (TAA), which tests for intermediate coding competency. (Those applying for the 19-week program do not need to pass the TAA.) Hack Reactor offers test prep programs to help prepare applicants for this assessment.

Hack Reactor provides students with a large network of professional peers, 1:1 coaching, mock interviews and job training, and building a student’s online presence. All students graduate as autonomous, full-stack software engineers, fully capable of tackling unique problems and building complex applications on the job. To date, the school has more than 7,000 graduates who’ve been hired by more than 2,500 companies around the world.

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  • 12-Week Software Engineering Immersive

    Apply
    CSS, HTML, JavaScript, AngularJS, Express.js, Front End, Git, jQuery, MySQL, Node.js, React.js
    In PersonFull Time60 Hours/week12 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$17,980
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationSan Francisco, Online, Denver, Seattle, New York City, Los Angeles, Austin
    After our 12-week coding bootcamp, you'll be what you want to be: a software engineer, fully capable of tackling unique and unfamiliar problems and building complex applications on the job. During the program, you can expect: 1) Real engineering work, right away: You'll work through hundreds of hours of problems designed to prepare you for success in technical interviews and in the workplace. 2) Real tools and practices to build job-ready skills: You'll gain the skills to plan, scope, build, and manage applications. You'll learn cutting-edge tech like React and ES6, along with Full Stack JavaScript and computer science fundamentals. 3) Real-world expectations to help launch your career: We'll challenge you to meet deadlines and requirements, build autonomy, communicate with precision, and collaborate effectively. Then we'll help you land the job you've worked so hard to prepare for. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/coding-bootcamp
    Financing
    DepositAfter acceptance, a non-refundable $100 deposit is required in order to secure your spot.
    Financing
    Galvanize is proud to offer Hack Reactor students a variety of tuition assistance options including full-tuition scholarships, Income Share Agreements, and working with lending partners like Ascent Funding and Climb Credit.
    Tuition PlansPlease see the Financing section above.
    ScholarshipYes, we’re proud to offer scholarships for Hack Reactor Software Engineering Immersive students. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/scholarships
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelStudents need to demonstrate fluency in JavaScript fundamentals and are driven learners and communicators. (Our Prep programs help you develop these skills.)
    Prep WorkOnce accepted and prior to your start date, plan to spend about 90-120 hours on our Precourse curriculum. When you're done, you'll have a strong foundation in JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and more, and you'll be ready for Day 1.
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • 12-Week Software Engineering Online Immersive

    Apply
    AngularJS, Front End, JavaScript, Express.js, Git, HTML, jQuery, MySQL, Node.js, React.js
    OnlineFull Time60 Hours/week12 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$17,980
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    After our 12-week online coding bootcamp, you'll be what you want to be: a software engineer, fully capable of tackling unique and unfamiliar problems and building complex applications on the job. During the program, you can expect: 1) Real engineering work, right away: You'll work through hundreds of hours of problems designed to prepare you for success in technical interviews and in the workplace. 2) Real tools and practices to build job-ready skills: You'll gain the skills to plan, scope, build, and manage applications. You'll learn cutting-edge tech like React and ES6, along with Full Stack JavaScript and computer science fundamentals. 3) Real-world expectations to help launch your career: We'll challenge you to meet deadlines and requirements, build autonomy, communicate with precision, and collaborate effectively. Then we'll help you land the job you've worked so hard to prepare for. 4) As a remote learner, you can also expect live online instruction and interaction. Learn to code in real-time from world-class instructors, pair program with your classmates, and build your network during after-hours online events. You’ll also have access to our team 6 days a week. As questions arise, you'll have the support you need, inside and outside of class time. Reach out to instructors and mentors to set up real-time videoconferences, and stay in touch with your peers on Slack at any hour. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/online-coding-bootcamp
    Financing
    DepositAfter acceptance, a non-refundable $100 deposit is required in order to secure your spot.
    Financing
    Galvanize is proud to offer Hack Reactor students a variety of tuition assistance options including full-tuition scholarships, Income Share Agreements, and working with lending partners like Ascent Funding and Climb Credit.
    Tuition PlansPlease see the Financing section above.
    ScholarshipYes, we’re proud to offer scholarships for Hack Reactor Software engineering Immersive students. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/scholarships
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelAll applicants must pass a coding challenge and Technical Admissions Assessment (TAA), which tests for intermediate coding competency. Our Prep programs will help you get there: https://www.hackreactor.com/prep-programs
    Prep WorkOnce accepted and prior to your start date, incoming students should plan to spend about 90-120 hours on our Precourse curriculum. When done, you'll have a strong foundation in JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and more, and you'll be ready for Day 1.
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • 19-Week Software Engineering Immersive with JavaScript & Python

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    SQL, React.js, Python, Node.js, MySQL, HTML, Front End, Express.js, CSS, AngularJS
    OnlineFull Time45 Hours/week19 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$17,980
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    Through this 19-week online coding bootcamp, you’ll be able to start thriving in a new career -- even if you have no coding experience. Students commit 45 hours per week for 19 weeks, and can expect: 1) In-demand technology and computer science. Our curriculum includes algorithms, data structures, networking, and databases. You’ll also learn Python and JavaScript, the two most in-demand programming languages, plus state-of-the-art practices such as microservices, CI/CD, and network security. 2) Expert instruction using a mastery learning model. We crafted a modern curriculum using the mastery learning model to ensure you grasp, internalize, and master every learning module. This includes the ability to retake modules as needed, and each module culminates in a project so you can build an impressive portfolio to show future employers. 3) Training for long-term career health. We cover skills that lead to career sustainability, including how to establish and maintain healthy and supportive work relationships, use stress management to reduce fatigue and frustration, and have confidence in your decisions. 4) Career services. We don’t wait until the end of the program to talk about jobs. Throughout your 19 weeks, our experienced Career Services team will help you land the job and career you want. Get 1:1 coaching tailored to your skills and needs, go through mock interviews, build your professional resume, and more. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/learn-python-learn-javascript
    Financing
    DepositAfter acceptance, a non-refundable $100 deposit is required in order to secure your spot.
    Financing
    Galvanize is proud to offer Hack Reactor students a variety of tuition assistance options including full-tuition scholarships, Income Share Agreements, and working with lending partners like Ascent Funding and Climb Credit.
    Tuition PlansPlease see the Financing section above.
    ScholarshipYes, we’re proud to offer scholarships for Hack Reactor Software engineering Immersive students. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/scholarships
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelNone. No coding experience is needed.
    Prep WorkApplicants are required to pass a typing test and non-technical cognitive assessment. Once accepted, students are given Course Primers (not required but highly encouraged), which help everyone refresh on computer literacy and high school math.
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • 36-Week Software Engineering Online Immersive

    Apply
    JavaScript, HTML, CSS, AngularJS, Express.js, Front End, jQuery, MySQL, Node.js, React.js
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$17,980
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    The carefully designed pace of our part-time online coding bootcamp allows for work-life balance as you train for a new career. Become a software engineer in 36 weeks; learn to code nights and weekends. Afterward, you'll be what you want to be: a software engineer, fully capable of tackling unique and unfamiliar problems and building complex applications on the job. During the program, you can expect: Real engineering work, right away: You'll work through hundreds of hours of problems designed to prepare you for success in technical interviews and in the workplace. Real tools and practices to build job-ready skills: You'll gain the skills to plan, scope, build, and manage applications. You'll learn cutting-edge tech like React and ES6, along with Full Stack JavaScript and computer science fundamentals. Real-world expectations to help launch your career: We'll challenge you to meet deadlines and requirements, build autonomy, communicate with precision, and collaborate effectively. Then we'll help you land the job you've worked so hard to prepare for. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/part-time-coding-bootcamp
    Financing
    DepositAfter acceptance, a non-refundable $100 deposit is required in order to secure your spot.
    Financing
    Galvanize is proud to offer Hack Reactor students a variety of tuition assistance options including full-tuition scholarships, Income Share Agreements, and working with lending partners like Ascent Funding and Climb Credit.
    Tuition PlansApplicants 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.
    ScholarshipYes, we’re proud to offer scholarships for Hack Reactor Software engineering Immersive students. Learn more: https://www.hackreactor.com/scholarships
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelAll applicants must pass a coding challenge and Technical Admissions Assessment (TAA), which tests for intermediate coding competency. Our Prep programs will help you get there: https://www.hackreactor.com/prep-programs
    Prep WorkOnce accepted and prior to your start date, incoming students should plan to spend about 90-120 hours on our Precourse curriculum. When done, you'll have a strong foundation in JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and more, and you'll be ready for Day 1.
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • Daniel Chang  User Photo
    Daniel Chang • Software Developer Verified via LinkedIn
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    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.

    Background

    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.

    Also Javascript

    Finally, it’s Javascript. There are many other studies out there, but when I was doing my research Javascript clearly was the language to learn. On top of that, once you get into asynchronous calls and such, it just seems natural to be using Javascript.

    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.

    The Bad

    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  User Photo
    Emily Jones • Frontend Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    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.

    TL;DR:


    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.

  • Alexander Leo  User Photo
    Alexander Leo • Full Stack Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    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.

    Even in a remote environment the staff finds ways to bring the class together for an unrvialed sense of comradery and collaboration. All of the staff and students I encountered during my time in the course were, without exagerration, the nicest and most intelligent group of people I have ever met. I didn't have a single negative interaction. Prior to Hack Reactor, I didn't have any professional programming experience. All of the material covered in the curriculum is accurate and relevant, containing all of the most in demand skills in the Javascript ecosystem and delivered in an effective (but really rapid) manner. After graduating Hack Reactor in December of 2016, I got a job offer in January of 2017 for a Full Stack Software Engineer role that has gone above and beyond my expecations.

    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.

  • Michelle Carter  User Photo
    Michelle Carter • Software Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    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!

    I started out doing some market research and figured out javascript was a great place to start learning to code. So I worked on Codecademy and FreeCodeCamp. I met with a couple devs I knew and got their advice, dug all through the reviews here on on CourseReport. The best program close to me in Utah is DevMountain. Great group of people there. I started working toward admission there, but in the meantime, I heard about the Grace Hopper program in NYC that was for women only. For my circumstances it made a lot of sense to look at programs away from home so I could really focus my attention on the learning. So I headed out to NYC for the FullStack Bootcamp Prep program in September 2016. I had of course heard of Hack Reactor but just dismissed that I would be able to get in since I felt I was too much of a beginner.

    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  User Photo
    Richard Boothe • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    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. 
    • Third, I felt that while the price is indeed high and certainly unarguable, it was worth the personal investment that is my time and future when compared to the other programs and what they had to offer.  I didn’t want to spend my time learning HTML and CSS because I already knew those mark-up languages from my previous studying, the majority of the competition in bootcamps invests a lot of the students' time (some of them spend as much as a month!) teaching HTML/CSS which are concepts that can be acquired and understood independently quickly. I was on a budget and was focused on learning JavaScript concepts that I found difficult to grasp on my own, Hack Reactor focused on those specific concepts. 
    • 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.

    Without the core concepts of basic javascript, it is unrealistic to assume that the advanced topics can be taught, which is primarily a reason ES5 is focused on prior to teaching ES6. Why teach arrow functions, spread operators, destructuring, classes, constructors, map, set, block scoping etc… if you don’t have a proficient understanding of functions, arrays, basic iteration (for, for-in, for-of, while loops), scope,  objects, the ‘this’ keyword, the paradigms of Object Oriented Programming versus functional programming versus using OLOO tactics, when and how to use coercion etc…? That being said, as of now ES6 is being taught in at least the New York campus under the great direction of instructors Joseph Martin and John Michelin. 

    My experience as a student was excellent in the fact that it primarily focused on JavaScript, with some time spent learning SQL (not nearly at the level I did with JavaScript but enough to be dangerous). I don’t think that I could have spent the roughly 3 months learning more than one language proficiently as I did during my time at Hack Reactor. In fact, in regard to my job I only use JavaScript. This is due to my use of Node on the Server/backend and React/React Native on the Client/frontend. So I think it’s a little odd to read some reviews by anonymous individuals who attended Hack Reactor that make the claim that they felt regret over learning only one language. Especially since SQL is in the curriculum. 


    I will admit there were absolute moments of stress and frustration, with my own lack of understanding at times, or the lack of understanding from a Hacker in Residence, or from a partner who was less than helpful. However in hindsight, this was an extremely accurate representation of the employment I currently engage in daily. There are times now at my current employment where I have a problem that needs a solution that is not immediately available or obvious, a colleague who isn’t particularly helpful, or a more senior figure who is less than willing to help find a solution. The environment I experienced as a student provided me with a vast toolkit that was primarily based on problem solving, that just happened to be in the realm of coding in JavaScript. If I were to land a job that focused in a Ruby or Python environment, I would not have any trouble acquiring the knowledge to code in those languages. This is solely due to the fact that I learned how to learn how to code at Hack Reactor. If you can think logically and algorithmically in one language, you can learn the syntax and code in any language. So once again, this is an optimization of time and investment, with all the above mentioned fundamentals that need to be acquired to succeed at Hack Reactor, learning multiple languages and their respective syntax would be a waste of time to you as a student. 

    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 ;)

  • Brenton Hershner • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    Tl;dr if you have a similar background as me and love to code, enroll in Hack Reactor. You won’t regret it.

    I have a bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering. I worked as a ME for 8 years then earned an MBA and worked as a Product Manager for 2 years. I always had an interest and passion for software and tried to integrate it into my job and side projects as much as possible but felt if I was going to make a switch to be a professional Software Engineer, I needed a few things: A structured curriculum to learn specific things to make me employable, a mechanism to learn best practices which would set me apart from people who just figured it out on their own, and a network of fellow graduates and career coaches to help me find a full time position. Hack Reactor absolutely provided those things and I fully believe I wouldn’t be working at a FAANG company today without that support and education.

    I picked Hack Reactor because it seemed like the most challenging, was consistently ranked high, and the network of alumni is broad and well-rooted in the industry (because it has been around for a long time). I was not wrong and they exceeded my expectations. Hack Reactor is brutal. Say goodbye to your current social life. Your new friends are fellow students. Just don’t get too attached because many will not be able to make it. 

    Lectures are great but don’t expect a deep dive into CS theory. They just teach enough fundamentals so you can sound knowledgeable in an interview and a lot of applicable knowledge so you can actually build things.

    The first half of the program is a lot of pair programming. They generally pair the strongest students with the weakest. Weaker students face the challenge of the stronger person moving faster than they can keep up and the stronger student faces the challenge of being held back by the weaker student. Fortunately if you don’t like your pair, they are rotated every two days. I STRONGLY believe they should separate students into a higher performing group and lower performing group so that the unique needs of each group can be more accurately addressed. The second half of the program is longer, group projects, but individuals typically work on their own features, somewhat alleviating the challenges of the first half of the program.

    Two staff individuals I would particularly like to highlight were Josh Elder and Liz Martinez. Josh was the Technical Mentor for the Seattle campus. His technical knowledge far surpassed anyone else in the staff. Josh was the goto person for any bug anyone experienced. I personally saw issues go through three other staff members before being escalated to him and he was able to solve the issue within 5 minutes. He also taught many of the lectures where he was energetic and engaging. It’s very obvious that Josh loves to teach and his passion for it shows. I’ve talked to many students who said that they chose to attend the Seattle campus specifically because of Josh’s reputation.

    It was REALLY scary to quit my full time job and join a boot camp. I really didn’t know if it would work out or not, but it definitely did. I get to write code and learn every single day, which is great, but I also doubled my total compensation. I couldn’t be happier. I can’t recommend Hack Reactor for everyone, but if you have a similar background and similar passion for software, I couldn’t recommend Hack Reactor enough. 
  • Software Engineer
    - 8/12/2021
    Chris McClelland • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    I started with their Premium Prep Course ($250 tuition, goes toward full course tuition if accepted). Before this, I had no experience with JavaScript or web development. The prep course was easy to follow and the support offered from the Premium option was very helpful. I highly recommend this route because it's essentially free as long as you pass the entrance exam and the staff really was incredible. Coach Kathy gave some solid pep talks every morning and the tech mentors were great when helping with any issues. 

    After you pass the technical admission assessment (TAA) you get enrolled in the Precourse. This is about 3-4 weeks of work to get you prepped for the real course. Again there is lots of support from the staff and helpdesk. I received help several times from the helpdesk staff and they were always very helpful in guiding me to find the answer rather than simply answering. 

    Now for the main bit. I was enrolled in the Remote Eastern cohort (though everything was remote at the time). The course is split into two phases, the junior and the senior. During the junior phase, there are one or two lectures every day. These were "blended learning" lectures meaning that there were multiple cohorts in the zoom call. The lecturers were all great. They explained relatively complex topics in about an hour, setting us up to use put that info to work in the current sprint. The sprints were two-day projects that you work on with a partner. These are projects to learn the principles of the current topic. You switch partners every time so you'll get to know many of your classmates, which is difficult in the beginning due to the remote environment. All of these lessons lead up to the Technical Assessment which is a gating midpoint exam. You'll have to pass this to go on to the senior phase. As long as you are putting in the work and asking for help when you need it, the TA shouldn't be an issue. 

    The senior phase is all about combining all the junior lessons to start building real applications. There are four projects, three in groups and one solo. This was the part where I started feeling like I might actually be a software engineer. 

    The staff was incredible in every aspect. The lecturers did a great job remotely (as a former teacher I was always impressed). The cohort lead always brought her inspiring attitude for the morning announcements and was always available for any support you might need. The tech mentors were great as well. They had regular office hours to go over any tech topics you might be struggling with. Most of my interaction with staff was with the helpdesk or the SEIR (software engineering immersive resident. All the helpdesk staff and SEIRs are recent Hack Reactor grads so they have experience with whatever issue you might be having. The helpdesk helped my various partners and me get through many struggles in the junior phase sprints. My cohort was lucky to have the best SEIR. He was super helpful and highly skilled at explaining difficult concepts as if to a child but without being condescending. 

    The final week of the course is spent with the Career Services team. They help with your resume, cover letters, salary negotiation, and much more. This is crucial because obviously, the goal is to get a job. After graduating you're assigned a Career Services Manager. This is the person that will help you individually with any job search questions or concerns. Also there optional is the Job Search Program which provides some structure and guidance for your job search. 

    I had a great experience at Hack Reactor and definitely recommend it. I want to emphasize though that it isn't for everyone. It's a lot of work. Expect to put in a minimum of 60 hours a week for three months. They provide what you need to be successful, but ultimately it's up to you to do the work. 
  • Ricky Marasigan • Software Engineer I • Graduate
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    I think it's safe to say that Hack Reactor was the most challenging, yet rewarding experience of my life. Based on conversations I've had with graduates from other bootcamps, it seems that when compared to other bootcamps, Hack Reactor is considered to be one of the most challenging and intense programs in terms of technical curriculum. However, despite how intense of a program it is, I always felt supported by the staff at all times and that made the experience much easier. I've recently accepted my first offer as a Software Engineer I at a well established company and it feels amazing to know I've come this far in such a short amount of time. I will always wear my Hack Reactor hoodie with pride as I progress in my new career.
  • Graduate
    - 5/21/2021
    Daniel L • Graduate
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    Program was great. You learn a lot in just a few weeks. The staff is really supportive and helpful whenever you need help or have questions. Special shout outs to Julian and Hilary for always being such great program leads.
  • Sarah Baek • Graduate
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    I self-studied front-end software engineering for almost a year but eventually realized self-studying wouldn't be enough to land me a decent job so I decided to join a bootcamp. I've heard that Hack Reactor is the best bootcamp from my software engineering friends and decided to give it a try. That was the best decision I've ever made! The HR software engineering immersive is VERY engaging and forces you to be AUTONOMOUS (a word you'll hear every single day) which is important in your growth and prepares you for the real world. It's definitely not easy and you'll be slammed for 3 months (12 hours a day, 6 days a week), hence the name "bootcamp", but you come out of it learning the same material as a 4-year degree. Another huge benefit of this program is the friends and connections you'll meet. My cohort of 14 have become extremely close and will probably stay in touch for years to come. After the immersive is over, HR has a job search program that helps all students build their resumes, portfolios, cover letters, outreach info, basically everything you would need to land a job. This program really wants everyone to do and be their best and succeed afterwards, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND!
  • Helen • Software Engineering Intrn • Graduate
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    I came into the program with an IT background and a degree in applied math. I'd been wanting to get into software engineering for a long time, but after many failed attempts it became clear that I lacked the hard skills to really make an impact. Hack Reactor taught me tricks and tools that I either would have never learned at all on my own, or not to the level of comfort I now have.
  • Great value
    - 4/23/2021
    Jake • Graduate
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    Heard about Hack Reactor from my older brother and was very impressed. Learned more in 13 weeks than in the full year I spent trying to self-teach programming. Highly recommend it to anyone interested in software engineering, no matter what their experience level is coming into it.

Thanks!