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Lambda School

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Lambda School

Avg Rating:4.78 ( 79 reviews )

Lambda School offers a full-time, 6-month online full stack coding school. This immersive online school is dedicated to teaching the most cutting-edge and in-demand technologies focused around JavaScript. Students will learn front end, back end, mobile, and neural network technologies. Their online classroom experience is the same as any physical classroom, live students, live instructors, full interaction, pair programming, and frequent code reviews. Their online, immersive format allows you to be connected to instructors at all times, chat with other students, or have someone instantly jump in to see your code.

Before starting a full-time course, applicants must complete a 2-week free intro course to learn the basics. After passing some test assignments, applicants are invited for an interview with a school representative.

Lambda School is committed to helping students find employment by providing interview preparation, portfolio review, effective resume writing tips, and salary negotiation practice. Lambda School offers an Income Sharing Agreement where students start paying for the program after they find a job. 

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  • Computer Science & Software Engineering

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    MongoDB, HTML, Git, JavaScript, CSS, React.js, Data Structures, Algorithms, Node.js, SQL
    In PersonFull Time45 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$0
    Class size40
    LocationOnline
    A nine-month full-time or one-year part-time online computer science course that’s free until you get a job making at least $50,000/year. During nine months at the Lambda Academy of Computer Science, you will spend nearly as much time studying computing fundamentals and writing code as you would in most four-year programs. You'll not only be an excellent web development practitioner, but will have a deeper grounding in the fundamentals of computer science, including algorithms, data structures, operating systems, and more. In short, you'll learn the practical skills and modern languages required to become a software engineer, but also how to think abstractly and solve problems from first principles. We're so convinced you'll get a job after finishing our course that you can enroll and take the entire course for free. Once you get a job making at least $50,000/year, you’ll pay a percentage of your salary for two years. Check out our website for the details.
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition Plans17% income for 2 yrs
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic JavaScript
    Prep WorkPre-course work is sent after acceptance to the program
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • Data Science

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    Data Science, Machine Learning
    In PersonFull Time45 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$0
    Class size30
    LocationOnline
    A nine-month full-time online data science course that’s free until you get a job making at least $50,000/year. During nine months at the Lambda School, you will spend nearly as much time studying computing fundamentals and writing code as you would in most four-year programs. You'll not only be an excellent data science practitioner, but will have a deeper grounding in the fundamentals of computer science, including algorithms, data structures, operating systems, and more. In short, you'll learn the practical skills and modern languages required to become a data scientist, but also how to think abstractly and solve problems from first principles. We're so convinced you'll get a job after finishing our course that you can enroll and take the entire course for free. Once you get a job making at least $50,000/year, you’ll pay a percentage of your salary for two years. Check out our website for the details. Our curriculum covers the following topics and more: - Statistics - Linear Algebra - Regression - Data Visualization - Principal Components Analysis - Neural Networks - Deep Learning - Computer Vision - Clustering & Search - Natural Language Processing - Data Collection - Data Science - TensorFlow - Amazon AI Services
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition Plans17% of salary for 2 yrs
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic Python and algebra
    Prep WorkPre-course work will be sent after acceptance to the program
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • iOS Development

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    Xcode, Objective-C, iOS, Swift
    In PersonFull Time40 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$0
    Class size40
    LocationOnline
    Swift, Objective C, and computer science
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition Plans17% of income for 2 yrs after getting a job
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelN/A
    Prep WorkWe provide pre-course work lessons free of charge.
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • UX Design

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    HTML, JavaScript, Design, User Experience Design, CSS
    In PersonFull Time40 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$0
    Class size40
    LocationOnline
    A comprehensive, 36 week course that will teach you to be a UX developer.
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition Plans17% of income for 2 yrs after getting a job
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelN/A
    Prep WorkWe provide pre-course work lessons free of charge.
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes

Shared Review

  • Jiovan Melendez • Graduate
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    Lambda has its perks: 

    • $0 to start
    • Take classes from anywhere
    • Learn from elite instructors

    For me, the last point was most important. I wanted to learn the equivalent of the four semesters in a quality computer science undergrad program in just two semesters. Lambda provided that for me and has opened many doors for me in my career.

    5 stars!

  • Mountain Scott  User Photo
    Mountain Scott • Lifelong Student • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Before you continue reading I must state that one should be suspicious of the predominantly positive ratings about Lambda School on this platform because it is biased towards individuals asked to complete reviews after finding employment.  People who have bad experiences may not even bother finding review sites like these and posting on them.  Also, I can assure you that the signals of the internal level of satisfaction with Lambda from students (based on comments by students within the platform on Slack suggest a significantly lower true approval rating).

    About a year ago a Lambda graduate wrote a reddit post that criticized Lambda School (henceforth "Lambda") for:
    • cohort size
    • inflating positive PR by encouraging students to say good things about LS on social media platforms
    • not having a proven track record (due to the Lambda's relative youth compared to, e.g., App Academy)
    This post was followed by a comment that said the real problem was:
    • Negative students stirring up trouble
    • Over-reliance on a "teaching you how to learn" Motto
    This is by no means the only reddit post that says less than pleasant things about Lambda, but it's likely the top one if one Googles something like "should I join lambda school?". I won't agree or disagree with any of the statements in that linked post, but I think it forms a useful backdrop for my critique of the Lambda School Data Science program.
    The purpose of my post is to offer a review of Lambda School that is 1) specific to the Data Science program and 2) not constricted within the heavily-curated official Lambda subreddit. When I wanted to join the Lambda DS program, there were very few useful reviews (most were web-dev-centric), so I hope I can help others who are researching the program.
    ----------------------------
     Last year around this time Udacity did a major overhaul to its pricing structure that made it no longer an affordable option for me to use to pursue a career in data science (DS). I went on a google search to find cheaper alternatives and I found a reddit post about the Udacity price hike in which one of the commenters said something to the effect that Udacity's new pricing would make schools like Lambda more popular for career training. I Googled "Lambda School" and was sold on the length of the program, the topics covered, and the income share agreement (ISA) that would allow me to defer tuition costs until after I found a job paying $50,000 or more in a relevant tech field.
    I considered the length of the program (7-9 months) good because I personally would be more convinced about someone saying they obtained a certain skill set from a 7-9 month program than from a 3-month program (which is a common time period for many bootcamps). I liked that the program would spend a lot of time on statistics (4 weeks) instead of only introducing it as part of the EDA on an otherwise Machine-learning focused curriculum. I don't have any links to post you may see a lot of complaining online about DS education not being stats-focused. I appreciated the attempt at spending more time on the subject. Lastly, the ISA meant I went from allocating a budget for a lower-cost version of Udacity to a free-for-now (deferred cost) program, which allowed me to use that money to pay off my apartment lease for one year. This was advantageous since fulltime Lambda programs are time intensive (11 to 7 EST, in theory, but 11-9pm EST in reality)--so not not much time to earn an income (few jobs would be down for working around a schedule like that anyway, FME).Good things about the Lambda Data Science Program:
    1. The Slack-based Learning Platform: Lambda school has a student dashboard webpage that may have been made to be the source of knowledge/information, but everything really goes down in the Slack app. While the instructor is teaching via Zoom, you can ask questions on Slack that can be answered by the instructor (more on this later) or answered by other students. Questions and comments are then visible and can be pinned to the Slack Channel for future reference. For anyone who has experienced the asynchronous "discussion board" layout of many online learning institutions (I have), knows the value of a synchronous learning environment. A good instructor will make excellent use of the to ability communicate with students while teaching by asking and answering questions, creating polls (including anonymous ones), and interacting positively by liking/adding emojis to certain comments. The emoji thing may seem trivial but the more interaction the better and an approval signals to others what is the "best answer".
    2. The chance to interact with people who are in different stages oflearningandemployment. A Lambda Student will be assigned to a group with is led by a team lead (TL) who is former Lambda student who is still on the job hunt. They are not DS experts yet, but they have the potential to provide useful perspectives and even learn more themselves (as a lot can be learned by teaching). As a lambda DS student, you will also have access to Slack channels where students in other cohorts (ahead of and behind your own cohort) discuss various DS-related topics. Students who secure employment can remain active in communal Slack channels after securing employment.
    Also, you can actually talk to real Data Scientist during weekly "Brown Bag" Lunch presentations from guest experts. I personally never had time to attend a "Brown bag" session (and I don't see how a serious student could have such time, but the brown bags do exist).
    I suppose all of 2) still ties into the fact that Slack is used as the main hub for Lambda school and so one can avail of all the features Slack offers.
    3. The openness of administration to conversations about improvements to Lambda. There is a particular Slack Channel called "announcements" in which a new change/service is announced, and students can respond to it in a related channel called "announcement threads". An outsider would be shocked at the kinds of conversations that happen here in which students to varying levels of zeal, express how they feel about an actual or potential change. Administrators are exposed to a level of criticism that one can't help sympathize with but a lot is learned in the process. Also students (including grad) can and will offer criticism about specifically the DS curriculum in relevant slack channels. They are often a fun read after getting through a day of hard work.
    So far so good, right? Ready to enroll? Not so fast...
    Bad things about the Lambda Data Science Program:
    One might note that the benefits of Slack are more or less independent of Lambda School's educational quality. Meaning, putting a bad driver in a Lamborghini doesn't make them a good driver, but they will have more options and might be more motivated to learn to become a good driver (why let such a good vehicle go to waste?)
    1. Admissions: It becomes apparent very quickly that not all students completed or understood the assignments that are supposed to be completed prior to being accepted into a cohort. I won't delve too heavily into this subject because such criticism about Lambda are echoed elsewhere. I do want to clarify, however, that my issue with whether or not a student was "smart" enough to be a part of the program. Instead, my issue is with, how at the very beginning, they did not demonstrate level of effort needed to be part of an intensive educational program. I don't care if they have to complete the precourse work five times, make them do it until they pass, and it can be certain that someone who constantly failed the precourse work, but stuck through it
    2. Poorly evaluating students who in the program: Once students are in the program, they still are susceptible to being passed through even if their understanding is low or work is mediocre. The problems with this is the same as those mentioned in 1)
    3. Confusing "Expert" with "Teacher"
    The Lambda DS program, at the time of this post, has an energetic, interactive teacher, Ryan A., who teaches Unit 1. He makes full use of the synchronous learning environment that slack provides. Ryan stays on topic (or keeps his tangents short), constantly asks questions to check for understanding, creates comprehensive end-of-week exams that are sufficiently more difficult than the daily assignments (so you're not just copying and pasting and editing), and consistently makes himself available to video conference Q&A sessions during the time allotted for completing the daily assignment. It's true that he's a data scientist, but through either talent or effort has confirmed that he is a teacher as well.
    I won't bother calling out any names about the teachers that proceed Ryan A., but I can promise you that the learning experience after Ryan is a downhill tumble stemming mostly from the fact that there doesn't seem to be any standardized protocols or metrics for judging how well a teacher has performed except for feedback forms on which, one a week, ask you to rate your instructor and leave a comment if you wish.
    You will see a lot talk about how the CS section of Lambda school kills off a lot of students...many students attribute the problem to the curriculum. I can't speak for the other programs but the CS section the DS program (unit 3) doesn't have a curriculum problem, it has a teacher problem. I have no doubt the teacher in question has a CV that qualifies him for the role of "data scientist", but his level of interaction with students, ability to seek out gaps in understanding, ability to organize his allotted instructional time, eagerness to interact with students after class, ability to multitask (by looking at both slack and text editor, ability to live code instead of editing pre-coded material, ability to explain his steps as he does, ability handle criticism, are all LOW. This is the simple truth.
    The main point, even if it is against common belief, is that it is better to have a person with mediocre domain expertise who is a good teacher than an "expert" who is a poor teacher if the chief goal of an institution is to provide others with an education (think about a manager who "knows everything" but is despised...how effective could she/he be?) . Otherwise, you might find leaning too heavily upon pedagogical philosophies of "learning how to learn" when signs point to a lack of understanding among the students/customers who are banking their future incomes on the quality of your education.
    ----------------------

    Today, I quit the DS program even though I had passed all previous assignments and could easily be in the 85% percentile of my cohort in terms of understanding the material. I personally have no patience for a consistently poor learning experience and unfortunately Lambda has its DS program setup such that the same instructors teach the same units. So, at the moment, students will continue to enter the program with a false sense of how their learning experience will continue due to either a coincidental or clever decision to make the best teacher the teacher for unit 1. I say "clever" because if you don't withdraw from Lambda within 4 weeks, you will still owe part of your future income to the company (and each unit is 4 weeks long).
    I think the potential for Lambda's DS program to garner a reputation that catches the eyes of employers is high. I speak, nevertheless, only of potential because at the moment there are some serious pedagogical concerns that need to be addressed. I might suggest something like peer training (where different teachers show how they would teach the same lesson, for example). Ideally, there would be 360 feedback (teacher to student, student to teacher, and teacher to teacher) but any attempt to be more vigilant of instructional quality would make the program not worth dropping out of. Until then, there current platform is easily replicable by those who want to also get into the DS Bootcamp industry (or those who are already in it). Recipe: Slack, Zoom, small group of instructors, and a team of administrators, and some venture capitalists. Emphasis on the Slack and Zoom.
    I hope others find this helpful and I trust Lambda will eventually improve its DS program. I like the CEO and the leader of the DS program (Aaron). They seem to have their hearts in the right place, but education first, guys.
  • Benjamin Wilson  User Photo
    Benjamin Wilson • Software Engineer • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
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    I was highly skeptical with the program in the ads. It seemed too good to be true. After enough nagging from my friend who is a designer, I started to look deeper into it, and eventually applied.

    I started classes in March of last year. I had just lost my house in my divorce. I was living with my grandma, sharing a room with my son. I started my classes on an old laptop I got from a pawn shop in my bed.

    I was a single dad who woke up at 4am every day. I'd take my son to his early entry daycare so I could start work in the warehouse at 6. After we got home I had just enough time to cook dinner and put him to bed before class started, where I'd then sit for another 3 hours and take in something entirely new.

    In November of the same year, I accepted a role as a software engineer for a university, doubling my wages. I bought my son and I another house. We got a new car. I can afford to put him in preschool instead of daycare. He has never been happier, and it really is all for him.

    Everyone will tell you, it's hard. At no point is it ever not hard. Every other day you have to learn something new and apply it, in addition to every single thing you learned before. It nearly infinitely builds upon itself. But the Lambda staff is there for you every step of the way. Your peers want you to succeed as much as they want to succeed themselves. Lambda is not for the faint hearted or the weak. Lambda is for the strong, the gritty, the determined. Lambda is for the people who not only want to do better but those who need it. The unique tuition arrangement allows people to come in at their lowest, and completely turn their life around. I am forever grateful.
  • Clint Kunz  User Photo
    Clint Kunz • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Lambda School was by far the best educational experience I've had to date. It's remote, but it doesn't feel like it because you are constantly live chatting with instructors, team leads, and other classmates. I was not familiar with programming going into Lambda School, and I came out with enough knowledge and project experience to have a signed offer before I completed the program--the caveat there, is that I worked as a team lead for Lambda for almost four months during the middle of my program. Working as a team lead solidified the concepts for me and was the best choice I made. I've been working in a salaried position for about 8 months now, and I am able to consistently contribute to my company's progress. If you succeed monetarily in a career after Lambda, the bill is not cheap, but it's great that it will be paid off after two years of employment. The instructors and classmates were incredibly helpful and impressive. My opinion is that if you know you want to be a developer and you want to get there relatively quick but at the same time take no shortcuts, there is no better option than Lambda School. The pedagogy is unmatched. And one last thing, when I left Lambda it was a different school than when I started, so be okay with rapid change because Lambda is very motivated to improve.
  • Moses Robinson  User Photo
    Moses Robinson • iOS Engineer, Automation • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    I accepted an offer! I have officially increased my salary over 3x! It still doesn’t feel real.

    I used to make 30k a year and now I’ll be making over 100k! I have to say THANK YOU LAMBDA SCHOOL. THANK YOU from the deepest part of my heart. Without your vision, this wouldn’t have been possible. You’ve made a dream of mine a possibility. I was a first generation university graduate with a communications degree, and guess what? Never used it. Could be partly my fault, I wanted to make sure to “go to college,” right?
     
    But it wasn’t until a few years later that I discovered programming and fell in love and wanted to pursue it. But after my experience with loans and not being guaranteed a job afterwords put fear in my mind. What if I couldn’t do this thing I loved? What if I invested all this money on something that wasn’t going to pay back?
     
    Lambda School allowed me to pursue this dream without fear of losing my investment. It’s like they decided to take the bullet in me potentially failing. But that’s it, they did not give up on me. There was definitely a point where I was going to give up, but Lambda School's Student Success was there. They consulted and calmed me down as if I were speaking to dear old friends.

    Be aware though, when they say it's a full time commitment from 8-5, it's no joke. But there is a reason for it all! Literally everything they taught us, from the programming language to what happens in the work environment, Lambda puts you through. It's funny have Sprints, retros, stand ups, code reviews, and an agile work environement that lambda just intergrates to the program. It was honestly the best decision of my life. 

    P.S. If you feel like you're going to give up, do not. You can do. Literally not giving up is all you have to do. Trust!
  • Carlos Lantigua  User Photo
    Carlos Lantigua • Software Developer • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Like many others, I've researched a lot of code schools for cost and remote options. I've looked over hundreds of reviews, youtube videos, articles and it was really difficult to choose. I actually was accepted into General Assembly and two others before I even thought about Lambda. I had a friend who graduated from there tell me that it was the best option to get me where I wanted to be so I declined the other schools and applied for Lambda. I'm going to split this in this sections in case there are parts of it that people are interested in hearing about specifically.

    The Instructors and team leads.
    I can't say enough great things about the instructors. These are not just professionals in their fields, they're also caring people that love seeing their students succeed and enjoy talking about tech outside of just the lectures. They had some of the best instructors I've ever had and were able to break down extremely difficult concepts to an understandable, easy to follow format. The TL's are half and half I think in this category. I've had some that inspired me and really went out of their way to help every student without giving away too much and I've had some that would just disappear and only wanted to collect a paycheck. I'd love it if Lambda could tighten down on their selections of TL's or replace the ones that don't want to do the work. (I'm a TL myself in the evenings).

    The Material.
    Lambda has put together what they call the "training kit" for students to review before a lecture. A lot of it is a walk through with some small project that you can follow to get yourself ahead of the material that is about to be covered for the day. This includes articles that are linked for people that want to learn more in order to understand how something truly works and videos that you can watch in case you can't read long written material. This also serves as a reference to go back to throughout the day as you're going over your project for the day or during the end of the week sprint challenges.

    The Lectures.
    The lectures start as you would expect with a "Zoom" link dropped in the cohort channel and the instructor kicking it off. Depending on the subject I've seen anything from an instructor breaking out a white board to help visualize difficult concepts in an interactive manner to opening up code pen and even getting history lessons. A lot of the times you'll have a questions thread that the instructor will keep an eye on as they go through the lectures and they'll let you know if they want you to follow along, wait until they finish coding to write things down, or just wait until the end of the lecture to see what they've done. The lectures are recorded and posted later on after they've been processed so that you can come back to them in case you missed something or needed to revisit something the instructor said.

    The Projects.
    When I first started Lambda, they only had "Project week" which was a generic project that everyone all did that was only for the sake of making sure you could do the things you were taught for that module. This has since been changed for "build week" which is a team based full stack project where you'll be responsible for doing work based on the sections that you just studied. The projects are unique from each other and extremely interesting. This teaches you about git in a team environment, communication and how to establish a proper team agile work flow. You'll generally do about 5 of these build week projects in your time at Lambda so you'll be leaving with 5 projects plus a labs project. Labs is much bigger scaled version of build week where you'll be taught about staging and test environments as well as project management skills and dive deeper into AGILE. So that is 6 full stack applications by the time you leave Lambda.

    The Job assistance.
    This has evolved many times through my time at Lambda and all for the better. Lambda provides students that complete labs a career coach that will look over your linkedin, github, resume and portfolio. Once a career coach has cleared you as ready, you gain access to their list of hiring partners. They'll also try to put you in front of those hiring partners based on your preferences as well and are always looking for new programs to put grads into that will better their chances to get hired. I got my job through a pilot program that they put me in that got me in contact directly with companies that showed an interest in me so I didn't have to hunt them down and beat out other candidates just to get an interview. 

    Pros
    Knowledgable experts teaching the courses, evolving and improving curric, lots of unique fullstack projects done in a team to buff up your experience and portfolio, huge community of people that love to help each other, really caring staff. 


    Cons
    Through the nature of changing needs of hiring partners and technologies, a lot of things will change from the time you start to the time you finish the curric. This isn't really a con to say but being a part of the "first" to go through these changes can be a bit bumpy most times. CS portion feels extremely rushed and is a lot of information to fly through on a weekly basis, I gained more of a general exposure and overview of topics than an actual hard understanding through repetition of important algorithmic strategies. 

  • Tommy  User Photo
    Tommy • Frontend Engineer • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Attending Lambda School is the best decision I have ever made in my life. Their cirriculum is well organized and relevant to the skills companies are looking for today. Their careers team is the best in the business. They find students a lot of companies to interview for. I've got friends who have gone through other bootcamps and they don't have any career help at all.

    Going through Lambda School helped me land a job at Amazon making way more than I thought I'd make for my first software engineering job. 

  • Mckay Wrigley  User Photo
    Mckay Wrigley • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Lambda School changed my life. 

    Before Lambda, I was a disgruntled college student that was really struggling with finding something that I loved doing that could also be a viable career option. I decided to learn to code, did some research on code schools, and finally made the decision to go ahead with Lambda.

    I can't tell you how glad I am that I made that choice.

    I've landed my dream job a month before I even completed the program. I literally couldn't draw it up better. Lambda School is a world-class organization filled with amazing people who will do everything they can to help you hit your goals and your dreams.

    The staff is wonderful. Great admin, leadership is on-point, teachers are amazing, and the career/outcomes teams are incredible. I can't speak highly enough of the people of Lambda. They've done so much for me including referring me to companies, giving me feedback, helping me negotiate offers, helping curate a pathway to success, and helping me solve problems.

    If you want a full-stack code school that will take you from zero to your dream job, this is the spot and these are the people. I'll look back on my life and see Lambda as a major inflection point and as one of the best decisions of my entire life. I literally can't think of anything bad to say about the school. Everything from curriculum to career support to culture is an A+.

    If you're thinking about doing Lambda, you should do it. I couldn't give it a higher recommendation.

  • Thomas   User Photo
    Thomas • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    I can't even begin to explain how amazing my time at Lambda School has been. I came in to Lambda with 0 relevant CS work experience. I had been working as a welder for a hand full of years and I always knew that I wanted to find something that I actually LOVED. The curriculum is A+, the ISA is awesome, all of that is true, but the best part about Lambda is the COMMUNITY!! Theres ALWAYS someone on to help. Theres always a hand to pull you up. There are THOUSANDS of Lambda Students eager to do everything that they can to succeed, and being surrounded by that Is AMAZING.

     

    Lambda isn't selling a dream. It's not unrealistic. But It takes SO MUCH HARD WORK. I've  dedicated every single day of the last 8-9 months to this program. And it worked. Two days before graduation, I received an offer for a Software Engineering position making multiple times more than I've ever made before. It just takes the hours.

     

    Lambda dosn't just teach you. They don't just show you the skills/how to write a resume/how to set up your portfolio. They hustle WITH you. They teach you how to SELL YOURSELF.  As soon as you're "endorsed" (meaning lambda thinks you're ready to interview for jobs/you've met the criteria), you'll be given a FULL TEAM to help you get a job. They'll help set up interviews FOR you. They'll practice WITH you. All that is asked of you is that you bust your butt.

     

    I'm 24, I had 0 relevant experience, 0 degree, and a million other reasons to say "no one will want to hire me". I would have been wrong to say that. Not only do I have a great job now, but Lambda set me up so well that I'M being reached out to for interviews. Employers want your skill set and your abilities. If you can work hard, you'll make it. They'll make sure of it.

  • Justin Kaseman  User Photo
    Justin Kaseman • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Within 6 months of graduating from college and moving to the San Fransisco Bay Area, the place I was born and raised, I came to the dreaded realization that I wouldn't be able to support myself financially. I was working 50+ hour weeks in a career path that I was quickly losing interest in.                                   

    *queue quarter life crisis*

    Coming into my career change I had barely any programming experience. The most I knew about computers was that there was a thing called the "command line" where you could execute commands to the Operating System. I began self-studying after work for 6 months before realizing I was ready to take the plunge... but I needed help. I had just started learning React and it was destroying my mind. I needed the accountability to push through the hard parts (I'm looking at you CS curriculum).

    I knew from college that I do well with remote/online classes. Plus the time saved from commuting to San Fransisco I got to spend working part-time. It was the instructors and administration staff that really sold me. They had excellent communication and answered all of my concerns right away. So I pulled the trigger on Lambda School, a new startup that had only 2 reviews here.

    I won't speak too much about the curriculum, structure, or job assistance because the thing about Lambda School is that they are always improving. Honestly, some of my experience was a little rough around the edges, but as I went through the program and became a Project Manager for later cohorts Lambda iterated on itself and improved. Everyone there is committed to your success (the beauty of an ISA). There are multiple disciplines to study now, insanely strong career support, and multiple opportunities to make real-world projects with a team (just as you do on the job).

    At the end of the day, Lambda School is not a miracle. It will be hard work, not only through the schooling itself, but in the many extra hours you will need to spend studying off of school time. Then there is the interview process, which is a whole beast in itself. And then a lifetime of learning to be had on the job. But if you are ready to dive in head first - to fast track yourself - Lambda School is the best and most painless way to do it. 

  • Jun Kim  User Photo
    Jun Kim • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    I decided that I wanted to pursue software engineering during my second semester of senior year in college (studying biomedical engineering), so I was learning web development during my free time while finishing up my degree. I was making good progress, but I wanted something more structured, as I found myself "getting lost in the rabbit hole" too many times. However, as a student with accumulated debt from the most expensive university in the nation and a family overseas, there weren't a lot of opportunities for me to consider. I had already turned down my return offer from the previous summer, as it just wasn't something that I wanted to do or saw myself happy with.

    That's when I coincidentally learned about Lambda School, while browsing /r/learnprogramming. Like a normal person, it sounded way too good to be true... What was an ISA? How could Lambda afford to teach people before taking money? I was too familiar with the current education system, where students are overwhelmed, but forced to take out loans, so obviously Lambda's system sounded too good to be true. However, I saw that there was a free intro course, so I decided to take it to see what Lambda was all about. 

    Long story short, I was accepted to Lambda School and was convinced with the curriculum after taking the introductory "bootcamp." I told my parents that I was joining this program, and they were heavily against it, thinking along the same lines that I did (that it was too good to be true, that it had to be a scam). However, once they realized the amount of work that I was putting into Lambda and also outside of Lambda, they slowly began to realize that maybe Lambda's system could work. Lambda taught me to become a software engineer, not just someone who knows how to use a particular technology, but someone who can take those concepts and apply it to any other technologies. Lambda taught me a lot of various topics, but most importantly, Lambda taught me to be a lifetime learner.

    Lambda works, but to my own credit, I put in a lot of personal time outside of Lambda to be where I am today. I came to Lambda super hungry and I leave super hungry. I was fortunate enough to receive an offer before graduation, thanks to the help of my wonderful career coaches, so I'm not too familiar with how Lambda Next works, but I know that it's a great program with great instructors to help you on the interview journey.

    All in all, I wanted to conclude that I am very grateful for the opportunity be a student at Lambda School, and look forward to the growth of Lambda in the upcoming years! Lambda truly changed my life, as I went from a recent graduate from college to a software engineer in 6 months.

  • Andrew K  User Photo
    Andrew K • Developer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    Living in one of the world's most exspensive cities while making a minimum wage is not any easy thing to do, but that was the position I found myself in for the majority of my twenties. From fast food to grocery stores to Uber/Lyft, I found myself in a cycle of poverty that seemed impossible to break out of. After a series of unfortunate events towards the end of 2017, I found myself without a car, and out of a job. Fortunetly, this is when I started to notice ads for various coding bootcamps on my social media. Lambda School stood out to me because they said you didn't need a background in development or engineering, you just need a dedication to work hard. I believed them, and began to put in the work by Googling the basics of programming. A month later, I found myself accepted into the program, and two months after that I was starting my first day in class. 

    Lambda's daily structure begins with a code challenge. These are designed to warm up your brain for the day and get you thinking the way a developer should. At the beginning of the course, these are relatively simple challenges, but the difficulty level is raised progressively as they course continues on. Next comes the lecture, two hours of  highly interactive learning, with instructors having amazingly productive discussions with students. If something doesn't make sense, just ask. After an hour break for lunch(during which there are typically brownbag presentations), students begin work on a project related to the day's lecture. The instructors make themselves as available as possible during this time to lend a helping hand or answer any questions you may have. At the end of the day, you and a group of 6-8 other student have a standup meeting with a PM to talk about what went well, or any concepts you might be having trouble with. 

    As a student in the Full-Stack Web Development class, the curriculum began with the basics of HTML and CSS, then moved onto the fundamentals of JavaScript. All of this was already covered in a pre-course mini-bootcamp provided for free via Youtube that needed to be completed before the actual class began. This bootcamp has since evolved, and works differently than from when I went through it, so I cannot speak to how it currently works. After a month of these fundamentals, the course moves onto more practical frameworks that Lambda has chosen based on what they think will get you hired. My class learned about Node, React, Redux, Express, and MongoDB, among other things. During the time we were learning about these frameworks, we had two project weeks, the first one a front-end React project, the second one building an Express/MongoDB backend for the first project. After completing the full-stack portion, we moved on to Data Science, and switched gears by being introduced to Python. During this portion of the course, we learned about various data structures like trees and graphs, as well as algorithms such as stacks, queues, and multiple sorting algorithms. After a couple weeks, we switched gears again, and began learning C. During this time we learned about process scheduling and system architecture. We even built a web server from scratch. The culmination of the course was Lambda Labs, where students were assigned to a 4-5 person team, led by a Project Manager. We were provided a concept for an app, with wireframes and weekly milestones. Labs was meant to emulate the real-world environment of working at a tech company, and I believe it is successful, like everything else at Lambda.

    Lambda does not end when a student completes their course. A newer addition to the school is Next, a program designed to keep graduates engaged while searching  for their new job. There is a Career Developement team that makes themselves readily available to any student who wishes to utilize the team's resources and help. The guidance provided during Next is just as important as learning the code. I am beyond grateful for everyone at Lambda who played a part in my success story. At the time of writing this, I have recently accepted a job offer, and will soon begin a trek across the country to start a new chapter in my life, all thanks to the opportunities Lambda School provided for me.

  • Keiran  User Photo
    Keiran • Jr. Software Dev • Student Verified via LinkedIn
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    I started out as a FT Full Stack Web student and picked up a side job as a teaching assistant for a PT cohort a few months into the course so I've seen Lambda from two sides and the view is refreshing. I recently picked up a FT development job and will be completing the course as a PT student.

    The first half of the curriculum is full stack web development split into front and backend. With only about 5 weeks for each, it's a firehose of information. In class and for projects, you work primarily with React / Redux / Node / Express + SQLITE3 for a database. You're also exposed to basic algorithmic challenges through code challenges and pair programming through peer reviews. By the end of the full stack curriculum, you should have built a full end-to-end complete application.

    They've recently changed the curriculum so that students will immediately go into Lambda Labs after the FSW portion of the curriculum. This is a 5 week group project with weekly deadlines, check-ins, and presentations. The projects are fully spec'd out by staff members and I believe will soon be fully integrated with at least one other type of student like iOS/Android or Data Science. My labs experience was a bit rocky due to group dynamics, but overall positive.

    Finally, the last part of the curriculum is computer science. I can't give much insight here as I have yet to take it, but you learn a bit of Python, a bit of C, and a smorgasbord of theoretical topics like data structures and algorithms, operating systems, computer architecture, etc. I'm really looking forward to getting into it.

    On a personal note, I went through some hard times during Lambda. A few months in, I was in a serious car accident. With a concussion and several injuries to my spine, I was left in both a medical and financial bind and without a vehicle. I live in a very remote area, so I needed a car to get to a location with good enough internet to participate in Lambda each day, so I thought I would have to drop out. After a short discussion with one the staff members, the VP of Finance reached out to me to see what Lambda could do to help. I have never been driven to tears by someone's kindness before, but this was seriously so above and beyond anything that I would have imagined possible from just a school. Lambda is so much more than that and I will be forever grateful.

    Lambda has not only taught me how to be an engineer, but has also refreshed my faith in human decency. I fully recommend Lambda to anyone that wants to learn to code and needs that extra push of an incredible community surrounding you. I will be thrilled to pay back my Lambda Income Share Agreement and plan to donate further once I'm rid of my other financial obligations. Austen and the team are changing the world and I'd love to be a part of that in any way I can.

  • Jean S Ariza  User Photo
    Jean S Ariza • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    The best academic experience of my life.

    I dropped out two careers before Lambda School, an Engineering and an Economics degree. Those are beautiful studies, I learned a lot in all those years of study and I owe them a lot of what I am now.

    I treated programming and coding as a tool to perform better in my life and career, but then I realized that It wasn't a tool but my passion. Immediately I dropped out the current career, studies and job I had at that time, 2014, with the aim to be a software engineer in a mid-term.

    Whilst working full time, I started building and improving my Developer skills with self-passed courses, that really helped me. But then I realize that in order to accelerate my learning path It worth to attend a school, a proper and good school. A school whit a Computer Science curriculum was my objective.

    I'm not young and not old, I'm at the time I write this review 37 years old. I would love to attend a university and do Computer Science studies, but that was not an option, it required me to many years of studies, with my current age and family responsibilities that path was not realistic, the goal was to start working as a software engineer in a short-term. What to do? Look for a "boot camp"-like school with a strong focus on Computer Science wich teach modern market-technologies.

    In my research, Lambda was the sole school that meet my requirements: Computer Science curriculum, modern technologies and a modern school in contact and exposed to the top digital communities. It looked so great that I thought It was not real and unreachable.

    In order to be able to attend Lambda School, taking the best of the curriculum doing nothing but just studying, I had to take a big-huge loan to allow me to cover all my family and living expenses in all the 6-months of the curriculum and a couple of job-search-months.

    It was a scary and big life-bet I took. I had to be able to have a better job after Lambda or I would have serious problems paying the loan.

    IT WORTHED! I landed a new universe of job possibilities and career growth, much better than the one I imagined before Lambda.

    Here I'm graduated from Lambda, starting my new dreamed career working in what is my passion.

    Lambda is hard, is not easy, it requires a big dedication and a big effort --> don't be deterred: it worth the effort and time!

  • Jonathan G  User Photo
    Jonathan G • Front End Developer I • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    I attended LambdaSchool Full Time online my I got my back locked up twice during the time here and the teachers were very helpful in getting me to get back on track and push through challenges. My laptop also died once and I had to miss class for about a week and again was motivated and pushed to get back in the program. At the time i was freaking out about missing those things but at the end of the program before labs I was put in a special class to go back over those things i missed or did not pass in the program. They really do make sure you know what your doing. It was easily the hardest thing i have ever done. My biggest issue is that I misunderstood what was the position of a program manager. Essentially I seen this as someone who should be better than me and push me to complete the course work and more. I was treating these individuals as Teachers and honestly they are just students that have passed the program and and have not gone to labs yet. That being said they can help you with the program but given how well lambda teaches you they don't know that much more than you do. If you accept this and take it just as  a friend to bounce ideas off of it will be a much better experience 100% reccomend but only if your really interested in hard work.

  • Jonathan Reeves  User Photo
    Jonathan Reeves • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Lambda School was by far the best experience I have ever had with just about anything. Every instructor was super nice and always available for questions. The lectures themselves were tailored to the material of the week and helped cement new concepts while simultaneously building on existing skills already learned. The curriculum starts you off by teaching you the basics of HTML and CSS so that you build a site with them and then you progress to adding interactions with JavaScript. Then after you have a pretty solid foundation of JavaScript you learn React and how to really make sites pop by not only having them look good but reactive as well. From there you learn Node.js and create an awesome backend to compliment your React frontend. Then you will take a brief detour from Web technologies and enter the realm of C by creating a basic and small emulator. Circle back around with Python and Django to complete one of the best courses for learning to program that I have ever had the privilege of being a part of. 

    My time with Lambda was some of the best times that I have ever had. I was able to meet a lot of good friends and work with most of them by either pair programming, being a Teacher's Assistant or the final test of skills in Lambda Labs. Lambda Labs is a team based project that aims to simulate a real life project. You will meet your team. Colloaborate with them on the project such as what tech stack to use and also use Trello to set up tasks that you can then grab and work on and keep track of the progress on each task. Similar to the sticky note way that the guys on the HBO show Silicon Valley did with sticky notes and a whiteboard. 

  • Liz  User Photo
    Liz • Software Engineer • Student Verified via GitHub
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    Lambda School is perfect for a specific kind of person:

    • you cannot afford to pay a bootcamp up front but..

    • you can afford to not work for 6-7 months plus job search time (or at least work outside of lambda’s 40 hours a week))

    • you can’t reasonably teach yourself

    On the topic of the Income Share Agreement...

    If it weren’t for Lambda’s ISA, there’s no way I could have sold myself on this career change. I was already in debt from my bachelors and I couldn’t imagine taking out a private loan to pursue something that I may not have been able to do. That being said, 17-30k coming out of your salary over two years is a lot of money. Albeit this only occurs if you completely succeed and become employed in the field.

    I completely understand feeling like this is too much to pay, and for some it’s not worth it. There is nothing lambda teaches that you can’t find elsewhere for free, but for me it came down to three things:

    1. It would have taken so much more time to teach myself this stuff. I knew absolutely nothing about coding, it would have taken me so much time to organize myself, to learn, to figure out what to learn. Easily twice as long as Lambda, more likely 3x.

    2. I simply don’t have the discipline to self teach. I need some organization, I need deadlines, I need to know someone will care/waggle their finger if I don’t get it done.

    3. I already went 30k into debt for a degree that I expected to start making me around 40-50k if I got a job in the field, so why would I shrink back from paying that for something that can make me double (and later more). Because it's only 6 months instead of 4 years? That's not a reason to pay less, really, but it is a reason to be excited.

    This is such a huge salary jump for me that missing some of my paycheck for two years is a small price to pay for a career I can stick with for the next few decades. And it’s not a loan that will climb in interest every minute you’re not employed. It starts and stops with your employment and it doesn’t change. Is this more than other bootcamps? For sure, but at least I only pay because it all worked out. That safety net is kind of priceless.

    On the topic of structure...

    My cohort in Lambda was around 60 people. We were separated into groups of around 8-10 with our own group TA. The schedule was something like this:

    • Every morning we would either do a code challenge and then meet with our group, or a peer review for about an hour
    • 2 hour lecture with small breaks thrown in to keep us all from overheating
    • Lunch
    • 4 hour block to work on the day's project. These were either a stand alone project for the day, or sometimes a 2-4 day project that built upon itself each day
    • Meet with our groups again, talk about the day, and call it good

    This went by very quickly, it was very engaging, and surprisingly very social. I had only ever taken online courses in college and they were completely terrible. But lambda has really cracked the code on how to make remote learning engaging and social and fun. I have made closer friends in this program than I ever made in my four years of college. But of course this is a choice, you'll get out as much social engagement as you put in. But I think it's really worth it.

    On the topic of curriculum...

    Does Lambda teach enough to get you hired even if you know nothing beforehand? 

    Yes. But you will absolutely have to put in your own time to make this happen. Hopefully you’ll want to because the puzzles of programming will entertain you. Lambda gave me an incredible base and with it I was able to determine what I needed to hone and work on in order to land a job. And they stay with you through that as well. When you finish the curriculum they'll keep helping you find areas to strengthen.

    I found nearly every project to be worth it and a huge source of learning. A few things here and there felt unnecessary to me, but that's going to be true of any program on earth. Can't perfectly please everyone.

    On the topic of instructors...

    For the full stack web portion the first instructor I had (Josh) is an actual gem and I can only hope that Lambda keeps him for as long as possible. He made the introduction to this world so smooth for me, and exciting. I feel like he truly understands important, fundamental, pedagogical concepts and he carries everyone through with ease.

    My subsequent instructors were just okay. 4/5 kind of rating. Maybe 3/5 for 1 or 2 of them. Did I still learn from them? Absolutely. Will they only get better? Definitely. And while certain lectures may not have been ideal for me and my learning style, the projects were still great, the documentation on the topics was great, and I could of course do specific research and self teach in a highly organized way. This was totally acceptable to me and I don't feel like it's a weakness for the program.

    Bootcamp teachers are notoriously so/so, a great programmer does not always make a great instructor. BUT, I think Lambda is doing great despite that common issue.

    On the topic of getting a job...

    I got wildly lucky and secured a job before graduation. It was kind of a right time/right place sort of deal. I definitely put forth what the company wanted, but I also think I got very lucky. I don't think this is the usual outcome, and I was expecting a much longer application process. I can't speak to the career readiness/job assistance process at Lambda because of this, but from what I've heard they are willing to work really hard with you if you put in effort. They have a lot (everything really) riding on you finding employment, so you can bet they'll be helping you with it.

    The most important takeaway in my opinion:

    Coding is not for everyone. I do think everyone can learn to do it, but I don't think everyone will enjoy it enough to make it through the learning curve. That requires a lot of effort and its easy to lose motivation if you aren't stimulated by this sort of thing. I think it's really important to keep that in mind and to be very honest with yourself about if it's at all enjoyable to you as you learn it. That's really more important than which bootcamp you choose. 

  • I got hired.
    - 12/21/2018
    Axhon Ruiz  User Photo
    Axhon Ruiz • Developer • Student Verified via GitHub
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    I tried college, all I have to show for it is debt. College does not prepare you for working in the real world to solve real problems.

     

    Lambda did prepare me for those problems. More than that, they've helped me every step of the way with searching for jobs. They provide interview training, resume building, they even go to speak on behalf of students to companies to champion for us. 

    Lambda's model can be simplified to: If the student succeeds, then the school can succeed. 

     

    Most importantly, I got hired as a developer. Don't make my same mistake if you want to get into the Web Dev field, skip the student loans.

  • Ronnie  User Photo
    Ronnie • Web Engineer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    I joined in January of 2018 with some light experience with programming, very basic familiarity with a few concepts. The following months were a unique immersive experience that I found very rewarding. From the interesting projects to the incredible speed at which feedback was considered it always felt like the students were the top priority.  Lambda seems to pride itself on having created a special culture and I would agree, they've succeeded.

    The Income Share Agreement system they employ is great for several reasons. It gives opportunities to people who don't (in my case didn't) have the money to pay for school upfront and aligns the interests of the school and students perfectly. The quality of their education directly affects the bottom line and it shows in everything they do.  It's life-changing and empowering, truly a wonderful thing.

    The curriculum is quite varied and designed to provide you experience with a few technologies and the tools to learn others as needed. Everything is strategically designed to help you become a real software engineer, not just a "React Developer".  Every topic they cover is done rather quickly, and it feels brutal at times.  In the end, it's very worth it and works very well, and most of the things I would have listed as negatives have already been fixed in the most recent iteration.

    Job support is now fantastic as well, their Lambda Next program really provides a good balance between guidance, independence, and a solid support network. Everyone wants to help in any way they can and genuinely want to see you succeed.

    They move fast, there can be some hiccups but ultimately I think that's their biggest strength. If you thrive semi-independent in a fast-paced environment I would strongly suggest looking into Lambda.

  • Awesome experience
    - 12/11/2018
    Dani Tacheny  User Photo
    Dani Tacheny • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    I started Lambda in January 2018. I would 100% recommend Lambda School. It’s very clear to me that they care about their students and they absolutely want you to succeed, hence the income share agreement: they only get paid when you’re successful.

    My last job was washing dogs at a corporate grooming salon for $10.50/hr. Yesterday I received an offer for a Web Developer position making six figures, with no qualifications other than Lambda School. I cannot stress this enough: I could not have done this without Lambda and the staff there. I learned so much in my time in the program, and not just programming, I learned how to solve problems, how to talk to people, how to work on a team and how to learn. It’s an intense program, but if you put in the work and actually ask for help when you’re struggling, it’s so worth it.

    The curriculum when I went through the program was great, despite being a little disjointed. However, I had the privilege of experiencing the web development curriculum again as a teaching assistant, and it has improved drastically since I went through it, especially the front-end portions. They are always accepting feedback and make improvements based on that feedback.

    My personal experience with Lambda staff has only been positive. There are so many people there who have personally contributed to my success and personal growth. They really do want you to get a job, and they will do everything they can to make it happen as long as you’re willing to put in some effort as well.

    If I would have stayed in school, I would still be multiple years away from getting a job, tens of thousands of dollars further in debt and I almost certainly wouldn’t have learned a lot of the practical skills I’ve learned through this program.

  • The Program Works!
    - 12/11/2018
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    Christopher Beards • Front-End Engineer (Clover) • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    In December of last year I applied to Lambda School, upon being accepted I began studies towards becoming a Software Engineer with no prior programming experience. This did not come easily for me, I put in overtime effort, and sometimes it was really difficult, but all of that hard work eventually paid off.

    The staff was incredibly helpful during the entire process and several of them will surely be lifelong friends now. I was able to gain valuable experience as a Teachers Assitant after I finished the program, but before I entered Lambda Labs (the in-house internship), which helped me to solidify my understanding on some things, and gain more in other areas. 

    After completing the Labs portion, the staff was hard at work sourcing job opportunities and helping me to find a suitable position. This experience has changed my life. Prior to Lambda my income placed me well below the poverty line, and after Lambda, well, I can for the first time in my life say that finances aren't a problem. 

  • Tramane Hall  User Photo
    Tramane Hall • Software Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    After 3 weeks on the job as a software engineer, I can say that my Lambda School experience has given me a rocket boost into a better life and career. My Lambda education prepared me to ship code my first week on the job with next to zero coding skills prior to my time in Lambda. 

    Curriculum: A+
    The Lambda Curriculum is an exhaustive, but carefully curated, list of languages, frameworks, and concepts that equips an aspiring developer with the skills necessary to be a competent full-stack engineer. When I was accepted and looked at the syllabus, I felt a bit overwhelmed by the number of topics the course would cover and I worried that we would only delve into each subject area on a very superficial level. Boy was I wrong!!! Each topic was covered thoroughly and I felt prepared for our weekly sprint challenges. The instructors and student success team were also incredibly receptive to student suggestions about ways to improve the curriculum. Lambda takes great care to keep the curriculum relevant to the skills its graduates will need to be successful in the job search and I can say that I was comfortable working with an unfamiliar codebase and shipping code on my current project thanks to the curriculum at Lambda.

    Job Support: A++++
    Everything Lambda does is focused on making sure that you get hired as a developer once you graduate.  From ensuring have a substantive portfolio to show to potential employers, to having an assigned career coach who works tirelessly to help you land a job, Lambda is hellbent on making sure that their graduates land good jobs. If you are willing to trust the process and put in the work, Lambda will stop at nothing to make sure you are hired within six months of graduating from the program. On top of that, you don't pay anything back to the school until you land a job making at least $50k per year, so the school only succeeds if you do. 

    Overall: A
    There were times that I grew frustrated with the pace of the curriculum and felt like there is no way I could ever become a competent engineer. But the Lambda staff made sure I had all the help I needed to succeed and finish the program. This program is NOT for people who want to just coast by and think they'll land a high paying tech job. If you aren't willing to make learning your full-time job for the duration of the program, then you WILL NOT succeed in the program. Thankfully there is always someone available to help students who feel overwhelmed or fall behind in the curriculum. Everyone at Lambda School wants to see you win, I can personally attest to this because I would have never finished the program had it been for the support of my fellow students, the instructors, and the Lambda staff. 

    Because of Lambda, I am a software engineer and I am so excited for what my future holds. 

  • It really works
    - 11/6/2018
    Justin Rigler  User Photo
    Justin Rigler • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Hi prospective programmer,

    I imagine right now that you're in a similar position that I was in about a year ago. You have a passion for programming and have heard about the industry breaking down walls of entry. So you gave it a honest shot, but quickly realized it's still pretty difficult to break in. They want you to know technologies you've never heard of, to have experience doing things (pair programming, agile, etc.) you couldn't possibly have without being on a team already, and even if you know these things, lots of times they'll tell you even though you know your stuff, you just don't have the experience. It's still tough and feels almost impossible without the right tools and knowledge on how to overcome these objections and prove your value.

    I  tried the self taught route but struggled. Maybe instead you're confident with your programming abilities but want the opportunity to network and get some job assistance to boot. For me personally, I had zero experience and knowledge and went into the Lambda School program with a lot of fear and second guessing. The whole first month was me considering dropping out. There were times where I felt I would never get this stuff, more than I would like to admit truthfully. The project manager's, my classmates and the instructors helped me overcome those moments of self weakness though.

    That was part of the value of the program. I was forced to be accountable to other people who relied on me to do well. Over time, things that I struggled with became habitual and tedious. As the program extends into the final month before Labs, you start to wonder where the time went. For me, I saw the end and grew anxious. How was I going to find a job? Was I sure I had the skills and knowledge necessary? That struggle was almost negated by my career counselor, Courtney. She taught me how to look up companies, competing salaries in different geographies, how to fix my resume, how to talk to recruiters, interview tips, elevator pitches, briefcase pitch, and once I got my job offers, she taught me how to negotiate a better rate. 

    There was not a single point where I felt like a nuisance or neglected. Everyone at the school is invested in you, and just the other day I was struggling with some new software I had to learn at my new job and I mentioned it to one of the instructors and we ended up going onto a Zoom (webcam) session and he shared his screen and showed me how to navigate the program and use it for what I need to at work. That's the real value of this program: it doesn't just end, you're always a Lambda School alumni and the staff are legitimately invested in your success. It's their whole business model!

    I now have a job making over the $50k minimum and have begun paying back Lambda School. The cost is well worth it, for the first time in my life I feel fulfilled and a lot less fearful about my future and my family. Lambda School didn't just change my life, they gave me the tools to change the lives of others too. Once I am rich I plan to pay it forward by donating to the Lambda Success Fund and giving other people like me the opportunity to do something that has the potential to change their life.

    So let's break this down:

    Curriculum: 4/5

    The curriculum is excellent, you're learning cutting edge technologies from people who are well versed in how they align with enterprise application as well. However, due to this, the curriculum may pivot in the middle of it due to the way Lambda School works which can be frustrating, but it is for the best. Trust the system, they're doing this because they want to give you the best information possible.

    Instructors: 4/5

    The instructors are for the most part excellent. They have Beej Jorgensen who is one of the smartest people I have ever met. Josh Knell, Sean Chen, Ryan Hamblin and Luis Hernandez are all excellent as well and each while being very intelligent are still approachable and have all spent time assisting me outside of lecture time and even outside of class time. It's just the kind of people they are.

    Job Assistance: 5/5

    The job assistance is probably the best in the industry and is truly what makes Lambda shine. It has a dedicated team of career counselors and other business people related to getting Lambda hiring partners and exposing the program and its students to the professional world. They understand the importance of networking and encourage students, alumni and staff to engage with each other and keep each other apprised of their job progress. This adds another level of that accountability which makes the process even better.

    Social Environment: 4/5

    Lambda School, just like any other organization that has hundreds of students and staff all working together everyday for at least 8 hours a day, experiences periodic drama. It's unavoidable in my experience but the way it is always handled is impressive. The staff are very open minded and do their best not to punish people but to understand. This is a hard program and causes it to be a high stress environment at times, but thankfully the structure of the program allows students to capitalize on their teammate's, their project mangager's, instructors, and counselors to support themselves during those hard times. When it comes down to it, this is a professional environment and most of the drama occurs when people seem to forget that. 

    General Advice:

    Practice good communication, don't be afraid to speak up and voice your concerns, but do it professionally. Don't worry about how others are doing unless you're done and want to help. Your time in Lambda is rapid and you will want to utilize every minute of your day to dedicate to your project and growth as a developer. If you focus on yourself, your team, and then the rest of your cohort third, ask for help when you need it and participate in your class time, you will be successful. It's a good program, but you only get from life what you put into it. I believe in you!

    Overall: 5/5

    Lambda School changed my life. I currently work as a software engineer and love my job and all of my new Lambda friends. For me, it was the best thing that's ever happened. Hopefully I did my best to remain objective during this review and that maybe if you had any questions or concerns, they might be answered in this. If they weren't or you would just like to chat about Lambda, me, or anything software development, tweet at me @justinmrigler

  • Clara Andrew-Wani  User Photo
    Clara Andrew-Wani • Associate Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    Like most people that end up at Lambda I stumbled on to coding and found myself really liking it. So I learned as much as I could using free tools before I decided to find a structured program. I know for a lot of programs the financial requirements have changed since Lambda’s popularity but when I was looking Lambda was one of the few programs that didn’t ask for anything upfront. Nada. So I said what the heck, worst case scenario I drop out and waste a couple of months and best case scenario they live up to the hype and I end up a software engineer.

     

    The short version? Lambda worked for me! I ended up with a really great job as a software engineer.

     

    Now for the somewhat long version. To start Lambda is a startup that is constantly changing. That means if there is some part of the curriculum that isn’t working they’ll take the feedback and push an updated version pretty fast! And students and graduates will always have access to the new and older versions. The other side of that coin is that you’ll have to deal with the bumps along the way and if you want to see these changes made you’ll have to participate in the feedback loop, publically or anonymously.

     

    The instructors and project managers, in my opinion, make the Lambda learning experience special! Instead of someone just lecturing and giving you an assignment that’s due by a certain day, don’t get me wrong the course material and lectures are fantastic, you get a more personal education. You get split into smaller groups where your project manager knows who you are and will hold you accountable. You get to work with your cohort-mates, ask as many questions as you have, and get continuous feedback on how to improve.

     

    After the main course material, there is Lambda Labs an opportunity to work with a team to build applications for other. This portion of the program is grueling by design but its honestly led by some of the most passionate people at Lambda. They work really hard to get you over the finish line and prepared for interviews. And even after finishing, they keep working with you to find the right job.

     
  • Graduate
    - 8/29/2018
    Anne Courtney  User Photo
    Anne Courtney • Web Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    I started Lambda with very little development knowledge (some html and css) and got a job 2 weeks before even completing the program. The course was very challenging for me but an overall success because it got me to where I wanted to be.. hired! The remote setting can be difficult if you are easily distracted, but is great for those who feel most comfortable learning from their homes. The diverse coursework was a selling point for me as well as the option to do the ISA agreement. 

  • Lambda Works!
    - 8/21/2018
    Joshua Hall  User Photo
    Joshua Hall • Full Stack Software Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Lambda was first introduced to me via an add on Facebook. It was advertised as a Software Engineering program that requires no payment if you don't find a job in the field paying an annual salary of fifty thousand dollars or more. With a strong background in troubleshooting electronics and a deep desire to learn how to code, I couldn't pass up the opportunity. Being a skeptic, I dug up as much information about the program as I could to see if any scam reports were made or any concerns of legitimacy had arisen. To my surprise, I dug up blog after blog written by students participating or graduated from the program that expressed nothing but gratitude and gratefulness that they had the opportunity to attend. I thought, how could this be? Not a single negative review? It scratched the part of my brain that doesn't let good exist without condition, so I decided to apply so I could do my own reviewing.

    Living in a small, the only opportunities to establish a lifelong career are provided by factories and retail stores. I've worked in various retail and factory positions and let me tell you, I was miserable. With strong research and troubleshooting abilities, I was able to gain feelings of accomplishment and joy by volunteering to help an online gaming community in my spare time. I quickly became their "goto guy" when a new game server needed setup or if there was a serious problem with one of their existing servers. They quickly gave me a title as their "scripter". I really thought I had a solid grasp of coding concepts until I began attending Lambda School. I quickly learned that I had no clue! The more I learned at Lambda the more addicted I became to learning. Absorbing so much knowledge in such a short amount of time is the most invigorating thing I have experienced and I am not afraid to admit that I am addicted! Being a Software Engineer/Developer is just that, a career of learning. Of course, the salary is great but it's more than money for me. Lambda opened doors in my mind that I couldn't have opened myself.

    I have been liberated!

    On graduation day I was winding down from the most intense learning experience I had ever endured when I began reflecting on the program. It came to me, the conditions required for something this great to exist. I had to be willing to put in the time and effort to persevere through an extremely steep and difficult learning curve. I had to stretch and bend my mind to reshape the way I learn and think. Those are the conditions required to be successful at Lambda and for me, they were worth every drop of blood, sweat, and tears! 

Thanks!