Le Wagon is a 9-week Ruby on Rails focused bootcamp based out of Paris and other various locations. With a community of students with various backgrounds (engineers, journalists, architects, designers, etc.), applicants will join an exciting tech community. All the students of Le Wagon share the same technical background and apply industry best practices. This mix between diversity & technical expertise makes the community unique.
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Recent Le Wagon Reviews: Rating 5.0
- Payment Plan
- Payment in three installments
- Minimum Skill Level
- Prep Work
- Ruby track on CodeCademy
In PersonFull Time
In PersonFull Time
9-week coding bootcamp
- Scholarship for Portuguese residents
- Minimum Skill Level
- Placement Test
- Prep Work
- Ruby track on CodeCademy
In PersonFull Time50Hours/week40 Seats
In PersonFull Time40Hours/week
Rio de Janeiro
Le Wagon Reviews
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Having just completed 9 weeks at Le Wagon I would like to describe my experience before and after Le Wagon.
I started coding at six years old on an Atari 1200 and hobby coded ever since. Since leaving school I completed my mechanical and electrical degree training with Volvo UK. When I finished that course I moved onto pilot training. I completed it in 2008 including flight instructor training of which I am one of the very few qualified aerobatic instructors in the UK. I work various jobs in aviation for 14 years including test flying, airline and air ambulance flights. Life in flying is amazing but I really wanted to do something more secure without the added uncertainty. Given I loved coding and had programmed some visual basic programs for aerospace companies, as well as flying, I decided tech was the way forward. I am a person that tends to plan everything methodically so I started to investigate my options in London. Having been a flight instructor for the last 14 years it was important for me to find somewhere that had a well defined syllabus, study platform and teaching techniques. For me Le Wagon had all of this in place as well as a proven track record across the world.
During the course I have to say my expectations were more than met. We pair program from the very start, which is considered very important in the tech industry. The syllabus was relevant, the platform was very user friendly, the teaching techniques reminded me very much of the teaching in aviation, which has taken over 50 years to perfect, but also the system of being able to ask for help and receiving assistance very quickly. This in itself is part of the learning process. The course is tough going but then it is not called a bootcamp for nothing! In the last two weeks of the course we worked in teams to design and create an MVP. In a team of 3 we created a system to help with social housing and it was completed and live by the time of demo day, an amazing feat.
Since the course I feel a much more able coder and now have the knowledge and ability to complete my own projects of which I have completed one on my own in 14 days which is also in production. I have also left with a new sense of confidence which allows me to conduct professional developer telephone interviews. Le Wagon really give you a cutting edge and teaches you to work hard and really want to succeed in whatever you do.
Fresh out of engineering school, I felt the need to dive into web development before I went to do anything else. After discovering the program through articles on Techcrunch during my studies and amazing reviews on Quora, I decided to apply for their first batch in London.
The program has really surpassed all my expectations. I entered with very basic web design notions and left with strong knowledge of many technologies and languages (HTML, CSS, JS, Ruby, Rails, SQL, jQuery, Git, Heroku, React). You get to apply what you learn though developing in groups two web services: an AirBnb clone as well as your own project towards the end of the course.
The best part of Le Wagon is you meet a lot of new people from various background, all being very motivated and envious to dive deep into Web development. But even better than that, you will always be part of Le Wagon's family and network.
I was part of batch 36 in London and can testify to the technical competency of the teachers as well as the hospitality of the supporting staff. I strongly recommend this program to anyone even slightly interested in web development, after a careers change or at the start of your career.
First of all, for the past few years, I have discovered a real passion for web development. I wanted to start a business in the app industry and I had an idea of web application. So I decided to visit a friend who worked at Le Wagon at this time. I pitched him the global idea of the app. He liked it. So he took his computer and started to program. Just like that. I was impressed.
However, things didn't go as planned because we didn't « speak the same language ». He didn't understand my wishes. For instance, I asked him to change a button's color but for him it was not the main focus. He spoke about API, back-end but I didn't get a word.
After few weeks of disputes, we stopped and I started learning HTML and CSS online during almost 6 months. That was cool but not enough at all. No back-end, no business logic.
It was hard, very hard. It's a choice you make if you plan to join Le Wagon: during 9 weeks, you think hard but that's the only way to learn "no pain, no gain". And after that, if you are really committed, you become powerful. You can start a business on your own. That's the magic.
Since the end of the bootcamp, I code everyday. It's like a drug, I code some apps where I implement all stuff I learnt (that's huge).
Coding alone in his bedroom is fun for a time. Now, I really want to improve even more my developer's skills so I started applying to some jobs in startups. I have an answer every single day.
That's the second Le Wagon's magic.
Brice Tessier Huort - Batch 30 - Paris
Higher project => http://www.higher.business/
I finished LeWagon's 9-week bootcamp in Sao Paulo two weeks ago and finally had a little bit of time to reflect on the experience. What follows is a brief account of my time there, what I think I got out of it and why I think people interested in programming, web/mobile development and entrepreneurship should do it.
What I have gone through during my 2 months @ Le Wagon is priceless. There's no place for bullshit, it's just code ! I have learnt (and you will too) the best practices of the industry to build whatever you wish the best/fastest way possible, with the best technologies available (mostly for free) to you.
Le Wagon is the most demanding training I have ever done but also the most rewarding and fulfilling in terms of stuff learnt and people met. You learn something new everyday, if not every hour of the training, and the start-up mindset of the batch is greatly motivating. The lead teacher has 10+ years experience in coding and he knows everything about nearly everything.
Get in touch with them for more info, they are very responsive, helpful and friendly. If you're ready to change your life of course !
I read a cool article a while back, about how coding schools are the new MBAs. Just to be clear, I've never liked the idea of an MBA, especially in Brazil where I thing they're really shallow in their coverage of key topics, instead aiming to attend all types of backgrounds, and in so doing attending none of them fully.
So, I thought long and hard on that, and wanted to really learn something, make my brain work in a way that it wasn't used to. So I stalked the author of that article, Mat Le Roux, who had quite a CV on him, and seemed like he knew what he was talking about, and seemed to be saying the same thing that I was thinking.
Looking at his profile, I saw that Le Wagon was launching in Brazil and that coding really would be something new for my brain, unlike seeing discounted cash flows for the nth time.
After a quick talk with Mat at Le Wagon, São Paulo, I decided to take the plunge, and try go from zero to coder in nine
months weeks. The catch line was brave on their part, I didn't believe it really, I even thought they'd paid people to write these reviews, it's impossible that everybody only says good great things about Le Wagon. So I paid to see. And am glad that I did.
Classes start at 09:00 everyday, and involve two hours of learning the key concepts of web development. From ruby (and programming in general) basics like loops, to APIs and ReactJS. These classes are followed by brain breaking tasks during the rest of the day with your buddy based on those principles, luckily the teachers, and teaching assistants are there when you need a hand.
I'm not going to write everything down here, you can check out the program here if you want a deeper view.
All-in-all, I'm extremely satisfied with the outcome, the last four weeks, me and my buddies put up two great projects, Doacare and NuMooh, the latter of which we're building out as our own little startup.
So, I highly recommend Le Wagon, or any course where you can find a team as dedicated as theirs to getting you to this level with confidence.
A little heads up on my background, I am a trained engineer and spent 5 years in one of the biggest construction company with a very comfortable position, the kind of position that gets you sleepy up until you retire. No stimulation, no meaning, no adventure.
So I decided to stop the brainwashing routine of Subway / Job / Sleep and leave for another life where retirement is not the Holy Grail, the kind of life Gary Vaynerchuck describes in “Crush it”. YOU ARE the only captain on board, no one should decide how to run your life but you!
It was not an easy decision, you always know what you lose, and never what you’ll get for sure. But if, like myself, you’ve always been passionate about innovation, discovery, creating stuff, travelling, with a geeky side and a knack for new challenges, look no further, Le Wagon Brasil is just for you! Of course you’ll need a little money on the side, the program is not free, but far from expensive if compared with the value you’ll get, trust me.
Le Wagon is an awesome bootcamp as other reviews will tell you, but why make it in Brazil? First, you need to know how amazing Brazil is as a country and a culture. Awesome weather, beaches accessible every weekend from São Paulo, and an extremely welcoming culture of people willing to make you fall in love with a lifestyle full of music, churrasco and optimism. Yes the country can be dangerous, but no, you are not going to be attacked on every street corner.
I could not tell you why you should join Le Wagon in Europe, but I can tell you why do it in Brazil. The team is really awesome, the teachers are passionate, with true pedagogical skills and the overall atmosphere is the right combination of motivation and fun. That’s how the magic works. I had no previous coding experience and in the last 2 weeks, I could create this (http://www.calendr.io). Even if I didn’t speak Portuguese, I had online videos accessible during the morning masterclasses and as everyone speaks English in the team, I could ask anything anytime I needed it. And since 80% of your time is devoted to building stuff, I ended up asking a lot of questions about what I could do…
What’s next? I’ll be sticking around in Brazil to improve my Portuguese for sure. But thanks to Le Wagon’s network I heard about an opportunity to work as a developer in Jusbrasil, a startup of Salvador in the promising legal space. The company just received a massive investment from Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund and as I flew there on a weekend for an interview, they gave me a chance to join their team based on my bootcamp curriculum. I still have a lot to learn for sure but one thing I know for sure is that I won’t have many conversations about retirement there :)
Coming from a business background, I founded a crowdfunding startup during my final year in business school. At that time, I was spending lots of time writing specs and user stories for the developer company we were working with. Our relationships with their developers were great but each product iteration was way too long. For this reason, I decided to get more involved in product development by joining Le Wagon. The skills I acquired enabled me to challenge developers and introduce a lot of good practices into our workflow and development process.
The program has two key strengths:
- A very demanding curriculum that teaches in-depth programming basics and software architecture
- A very hands-on approach focusing on product development's methodology and workflow (heroku, git, etc.)
I feel like the coding bootcamp industry in Europe is getting crowded. Le Wagon main strength lies in its solid program that teaches both essential technical skills and a strong product mindset.
I completed my studies in one of the tops french business school in Paris (ESCP). After five years of business school I decided to start my own company but I figured out quickly that I was massively lacking technical skills. I didn’t know how to work with a developer and had literally no idea on where to get started to build my product. So I just bought a few books and put myself at work.
While I was starting my coding journey I attended a few workshops from Le Wagon which helped me a lot to grasp basic but essential concepts. I found the team very talented at explaining technical things and the program really appealing so I decided to apply too the nine weeks bootcamp.
The curriculum had very high standards and everyone (students and teachers alike) were really involved into it. I met a lot of great people during the class and 2 years after graduating from the bootcamp I’m still in touch with most of them.
After nine weeks of learning there was no way for me to go back into a business school oriented job, I wanted to code, and nothing else. Thanks to le Wagon CTO I found a I started a job the week after the end of the bootcamp. That’s how my professional coding journey got started. Since then I’ve worked for two other companies.
Le Wagon gave me the skills I needed to get legit as a junior developper, create values for the companies I’ve worked for and keep on improving my skills at breakneck speed. In addition to pure technical skills, le Wagon also provides strong guidelines and best practice that helped (and still helps) me getting integrated in development teams. The emphasis on code quality and team workflow is really strong, and it turned out to be really really helpful in real life coding experiences (jobs, hackatons, side projects…)
Thanks le Wagon and its team I’m currently a happy developer, alway keen on learning new stuff, and who will probably keep on coding for a few decades at least!
In a previous life, I have been a consultant in management and organisation. After almost 6 years in this job, I decided to quit because I wasn’t entirely happy : I was looking for something more concret, and that would make more sens for me. Since I can remember, I’ve alway though I would become an entrepreneur.
At the same time I quit my job, my brother opened a restaurant in Paris. As he did not have a strong management culture, I decided to help him and I took part in the adventure. I built for him a few tools that unable him to have an accurate vision of the restaurant activity. While I was working on these tools and fighting with Excel VBA, I discovered that I liked coding very much.
It’s at that time that I heard about Le Wagon. I though it could be a good idea to learn how to make web apps, and see if web development was as exiting as I expected it to be. It would eventually allow me to develop ‘real’ tools for restaurant managers, based on my experience with my brother. And finally, I was really exited about joining a new environment with many entrepreneurs.
As soon as the program started, I knew I had made the right choice ! And that impression has never changed.
1. the place is great !!
2. My fellow student ? they are very different : some are young, some are older, some are still at school, others have children, there are lawyers, journalists, consultants, entrepreneurs, advertisers, accountants, etc. There are even girls !! During the 9 weeks of the bootcamp, thanks to the organisation of the program (every day you have a different buddy and there are many events where we can learn to know each other), we have created very strong relations. 4 months after the end of the program, we still see each other a lot.
3. the rhythm is great. Even if a day at Le Wagon lasts 10 hours, it’s build in such a way that it passes really well ! They have found the right balance between theory and practice, and between working alone and in group.
4. the teachers are good, they know where to start and where to stop in order to make us progress step by step. Everybody is really pleasant and patient.
5. The pedagogic materials are really great. Courses are very well made : the slides are really clear and accurate, and you can access at any time to the video of the morning lecture. The exercices that we work on from 10h30 to 17h30 are challenging et fun.
6. The events organized by Le Wagon are really inspiring : great entrepreneurs come and share their experience with us.
To summarize, I’d say that when you enter in Le Wagon, you enter in a community. Then, during the 9 weeks, you address many different subjects and the program is really rich. But everything is made to give you the keys to understand all these new concepts and to be able to go further on your own if you want. Finally : it really works, I can testify that after attending the whole cursus, you really are able to create complexe web apps !
After Le Wagon and for the last 5 months, I’ve been working on Vendome Society : it’s a new market place where professional jewelers can sell their second hand jewels. I’ve developed the whole platform by myself. I will be launched in September in France. After that, I’ll work as a freelance with a few of my ancient buddies from batch18. Working together enables us to benefit from each other’s network, to help each other and have fun which is very important in every job. At the same time, I’ll work on my own project : building a web service for restaurant managers.
My time at Le Wagon Brussels has been a truly transformational experience!
Honestly put, I did not expect to harvest so much learnings from these 9 weeks.
I came in with the aim of developing a web platform for a non profit I launched with some friends, as the cost-benefit of taking some weeks off to learn and develop the platform myself outweighted the option to have it developed by an agency/developer. During the bootcamp, I succeeded in going live earlier than expected, having already a fully operational platform by the time of the final demo day (see www.fovento.be).
But besides learning the coding skills, what has proven very valuable for me is the entrepreneurial spirit all along the way! I actually quit my job right after the bootcamp, feeling empowered by all this good vibe and the newly acquired skills. Now I'm launching a SaaS company, building heavily on knowledge and capabilities gathered during the bootcamp. This great atmosphere is only made better by the great team running the camp in Brussels. These have been very fun days, like a reminiscence of past erasmus stays abroad :) I strongly recommend Le Wagon Brussels to anyone still hesitating about it - just apply and see for yourself!
## How I joined Le Wagon
I first heard about Le Wagon discussing with my friends about new startup ideas and essentially the frustration of not being able to prototype those ideas myself. One of them told me that I should have a look to Le Wagon. Fortunately all the requirements / availability were fulfilled and I joined the fullstack program from April to June 2016.
## The FullStack program
What a time I had! 9 weeks of intensive training with a learning curve that I have never experienced before, even coming from one of the best French engineering schools. The methodology and the staff around make this new world of code and web development very pleasant to get into.The curriculum is smart and progressive, and you've got access to a great pedagogical platform with courses' videos and slides. Very convenient to rehearse during evening and weekend, or to watch some courses again after the 9 weeks. The feeling of improvement is continuous along the program. I really feel learning all these skills would have taken me years on my own.
Now that I have finished the program, I feel skilled enough to build a first version of any of my ideas (well, let's say 99% of my ideas, because I can have some crazy ideas sometimes!). Whenever I am facing an obstacle there is always the alumni community to help, which is also the great strength of Le Wagon in my opinion.
Altogether this makes Le Wagon one of the best and the most valuable experiences in my education.
Before Le Wagon
As a product manager in a web startup I was working with developers and had always been dreaming about becoming one. So I was helping them coding a bit of HTML and CSS, sometimes some PHP, but couldn't really get further. As many aspiring developers, I spent quite some time on various coding MOOCs, but after a few months, kept feeling dissatisfied with my level as I was unable to code anything significant and was lacking a real teaching structure. At that point, I was about to give up my coding aspiration. That's when I heard about "Le Wagon" from a friend of mine.
Learning @ Le Wagon
I've just finished batch #24 of Le Wagon two weeks ago. To put it mildly, it's been a life changing experience.
When I joined Le Wagon, I had the feeling that I knew a few things about web development, but had no idea how to put them in practice and was feeling totally lost when confronted to the amount of things I had to learn. Therefore, on a given "learning day", I would spend a great deal of time just trying to decide what to learn.
Two weeks before the end of the program, just when everything comes together, you start building "real life" projects. You reuse everything you've learnt up until now and still catch up with new things along the way. At this point, I think the results speak for themselves, so I let you have a look at the "demo day" of these projects : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRUVEoYr6bA (mine was "Yfebo", second last in the video).
I was one of the students of the 24th batch of Le Wagon in Paris. After many weeks of search and questions to people having “graduated” from Le Wagon and other bootcamps, I finally took the decision to enrol.
It’s probably one of the best professional decision I’ve taken so far. It enabled me to learn so many things within such a short period of time. I never believed it was possible to learn so much in just 2 months! Their curriculum is extremely fine tuned and we can feel that there has been a lot of iterations to reach such a level. You’re extremely challenged without feeling drowned under too much information.
I did Le Wagon not to become a developper, but to add more tools to my Marketer toolbox and to have fun developing small side projects. I strongly believe that this bootcamp is suited for many different profiles: the marketer who wants to be able to communicate with the engineering team, the wannabe entrepreneur who wants to build a MVP to attract technical profiles, the engineer who wants to have a strong web culture, or just someone who wants to build strong foundation to become a junior developper. I’ve probably forgot many other profiles but you get my point.
One of the big pluses of Le Wagon is also the people you’ll meet there. So many different backgrounds! This creates a wonderful effervescence.
I’d strongly recommend Le Wagon to anyone serious about learning great foundations of web development.
I have just graduated from Le Wagon this month (Batch #24) and what I can say is this: everything you have heard about it is true, and much more!
I was a consultant for three years and always had this idea at the back of my mind to become a developer. Too bad for me I thought, it takes years and years of laborious studies to become one, right? Well, wrong.
Become an autonomous developer in 9 weeks
The program is very well calibrated and allows anyone with any level or prior knowledge to understand the basic concepts at first, and then put it all together during the final weeks and working on projects.
You will learn a lot, but don’t be afraid, there is ample time to practice during the day through the exercise platform, which is absolutely fantastic. You will also be paired with a random student which will provide you the opportunity to either learn more from him / her, or learn more helping him / her. And if you get stuck, teachers and teaching assistants are always at your service to help and give you insights.
After all this time, you will have benefited from all the best experience you can get, and look back with great pride at what you’ve achieved in 9 weeks.
Learn from a truly great staff
Everyone at Le Wagon is 100% committed to your success with a level of expertise of the highest standard.
The great thing about le Wagon is the entrepreneurial spirit they have been able to create, always ready to talk to you if you have any question regarding Le Wagon, your project or anything else whatsoever.
Don’t forget the “apero-talks” with successful entrepreneurs from the real world and a seemingly unlimited amount of beers in the fridge
Meet your amazing fellow students
The best part of Le Wagon is the overall community of students: everybody here is motivated, curious and willing to do something out of the ordinary. I have never met so many people from so many different backgrounds.
Overall, this was definitely one of the most enriching experiences of my life.
If you want to see for yourself, you can check out the project I have coded @Le Wagon during the last two weeks with my team (Arthur Vinson and Guillaume Degermann) : http://www.yfebo.com
I'm Marina. I've been an advertising copywriter for 8 years (a typically literary profile, zero tech experience).
And then I did Le Wagon, and now it's been a year and a half since I've been a fullstack web developer in a nice french startup who has recently raised several million euros (www.brandandcelebrities.com, come check it out - and we're hiring developers!). Here are some questions I wish someone had answered me before I joined Le Wagon - it would have spared me lots of useless stress.
## Can a non technical person become a coder?
The answer is “Sure!” - if he or she wants to. Coding is actually not harder than learning a new language (even easier, if you ask me). When starting Le Wagon, I was a bit worried that coding required some special mathematical talents that I did not possess. Well, the good news is that it doesn't.
At least at the beginning, common logic, good googling skills, attention to detail will be enough to create a nice-looking website with basic features. And the second piece of good news is that people with communication, marketing or business background usually are pretty good at all those things.
If your ambition is to recode Google - that's slightly different. But there's more good news: if after Le Wagon you still feel like doing so, you'll have a nice base for further self-teaching.
## Do girls actually code?
Oh come on, some of the best Le Wagon's teachers are women, why wouldn't they! There's nothing particularly “male” about coding, and the fact that we currently see more guys doing this job only means that the niche of women coders is huge. Honestly, every programming team would be happy to have a girl or several!
## Why Le Wagon and not another bootcamp?
To have some credibility, a coding school must have a decent looking web site. And let's be honest, all other Paris web development courses have the ugliest web pages on the Internet (No thanks, that's not exactly what I’d like to learn!).
Le Wagon has a foolproof programme that helps to cover the essentials of web development in a record short time.
And thanks to the continuous exercises, you actually learn everything they are teaching. It's hard, it's intense but it's really working.
Since my graduation from the course, I've seen many developers who come from engineer schools. They are great for classic software dev with C++ or Java.
BUT how many startups use C++ or Java? So, after 2 months Le Wagon alumni are more operational in Ruby on Rails than most young engineers without real web development experience. Our code looks cleaner and we use more Rails specifics than highbrow CS majors.
## Are all the alumni secret geeks? Will I be surrounded by nerds during the two months?
Come to think of it, we do discuss new frameworks and deployment problematics at lunch breaks, is that what nerds do? But the thing is we actually enjoy it, and if by any chance you don't, there're lots of Game of Thrones discussions going on too, and beer outings, and pizza parties… Wait, this does sound geek after all!
But I still think pretty much everyone will meet likeminded people at Le Wagon, maybe future colleagues or cofounders and most certainly good friends.
## Is there anything wrong about Le Wagon?
That's the question the staff ask all the students at the end of the course. And of course, Le Wagon isn't perfect, cause everyone has something to say.
I was part of Le Wagon Batch 24, during April-May 2016.
My main motivation was to learn to code to launch my own startup. As a business school student, I have always had some business ideas that couldn’t go through due to a lack of coding skills. I had in mind that learning to code would:
- Enable me to launch a MVP of a company I would create.
- Make me able to understand what developers were doing and work with them / manage them much more efficiently and smoothly.
Le Wagon completely met my expectations. The 9 week training is intense with a tight schedule implying to learn most skills required to be a full stack developer. The format is well thought:
- During the first 6 weeks, you start with a 1.5 hours course to learn more about a programming language or concept. Then you spend most of the day working on challenges to practice the theoretical learnings of the morning, with the help of teachers and teaching assistants. The whole team is amazing, full of energy. You could see that the team has gathered lots of experience which helped them to significantly fine-tune the program batch after batch.
- During the last 3 weeks, the students are divided into teams of 3 to 4 people. Each team has to perform a project that is finally presented during the “demo day”, last day of the training. This enables students to learn coding in teams, and work on an MVP that can then lead to a company creation. For myself, I was able to build a MVP of Easyglasses, a website to get glasses prescription online without visiting an ophtalmologist.
- Aside from classes and coding skills, Le Wagon includes a lot of events (workshops, networking, entrepreneur talks, etc.). This enhances your entrepreneur mindset and adds a very positive dimension to the training. Students don’t just learn how to code but how to create a successful company.
I would strongly recommend Le Wagon! Learning to code is essential today and you can’t find a better way to do it than Le Wagon!
Le Wagon has been one of the greatest educative experiences of my life! Why? Because Le Wagon is like a startup product you’ll never want to live without, not like a old-fashion school experience where the target is to get your diploma and get out.
Here are 3 reasons why Le Wagon experience is so great.
1. A great value proposition : learn to be a true (junior) fullstack developer in 9 weeks!
2. An amazing anticipation of students’ needs
Such a good value proposition is only possible if your teachers perfectly understand what you expect to learn and where you are starting from. That’s exactly what Boris, Seb and Romain, Le Wagon’s founders, understood. And that’s why they developed an educative platform that takes you by the hand and leads you from pure newbie to open-minded junior dev. No time is wasted. Every piece of code you learn is useful and understandable.
And guess what? This amazing educative platform is made available for life to Le Wagon’s alumni.
3. An unforgettable user experience
Last but not least, Le Wagon’s in situ bootcamp (as opposed to online courses) is designed in way that students really know each other and spend time helping each other. This mindset allows best practices to rapidly spread amongst Le Wagon’s students and alumni.
Once the 9 weeks of Le Wagon are over, you end up with a resourceful network of friends and alumni, you’re always in touch with them and… you never really leave Le Wagon.
## From movie industry to coding
Before joining Le Wagon, I was working in the movie industry in Paris. I was technical supervisor for a distribution company, processing the films to prepare their french theatrical release (dubbing, subtitles, poster printing, trailer and teaser...). Even though it was a 'technical' job, I always felt I was missing something. I wasn't able to create what I wanted. I was using other people's tools, sometimes outdated. More importantly, I had the feeling that the movie industry was on the edge of changing, for good. That viewers, customers, were asking for something new. I knew that the entertainment industry will be entirely “digitalized". And to be part of it, I had to know how to build softwares and apps and learn coding. Otherwise, I would be left by the roadside. When I was a kid, my dream was to work with computers. For some reasons, when I was a teenager I chose movies (at that time, teenagers thought hollywood was cooler than computers!). But finally, I came back to my first wish.
## How I lived these 9 weeks of code
It was just great. I knew in advance that I would like it. But actually, it was even better than expected. The first few weeks were very intense. But I knew, even though I was struggling on some exercices, that I was learning a lot. And at the end, we all made it. Nobody was left behind. Nobody. And that says a lot! The resources available for students are great, and very well structured to tackle precisely what you need to learn. I'm still coming back to Le Wagon platforms and resources (slides, videos, links, articles) nowadays, when a topic gets a bit foggy in my mind. It's very valuable. I enjoyed their 'buddies' system. Working with a new partner every day, being able to ask for help, or being available to help other students. It's great in both situations: you don't get stuck cause you've always got someone there to help you. At the same time, you're learning A LOT when you try to help someone figure out how to write his/her program. It forces you to really understand in-depth the concepts you're explaining.
The exercises can be quite challenging sometimes. But nothing impossible. And even though you can end your day feeling down, and thinking you'll not make it, the next day, you're back on the track trying to solve problems. And you know that everything will be fine, thanks to Le Wagon's methodology.
## The people
I met wonderful people. I know it sounds a bit cliché. But that's how I feel. My classmates had very different backgrounds: engineers, lawyers, an actor, a bartender,... Only 5 girls though (out of nearly 30 guys). Which is a pity. There is that false idea that coding is for boys. It's completely false. And all the girls in my batch where doing great at coding. Le Wagon's team is amazing. The teachers, Boris, Seb and Romain, all the teaching assistants... I had the feeling that it was the best people to be surrounded with to learn how to code. Most of the teaching team are former alumni (that did Le Wagon 2 years ago). They have been through the same doubts and struggle. Therefore, they really know how to talk to you and guide you to find the solution by yourself, so that you can understand it perfectly.
## What I learned
- I learned to learn anything about web technologies and computer stuff.
- I learned how to read the FUCKING MANUAL.
- I learned to work in teams, to priotirize my tasks, to read other people's code, to talk about it with them.
- I learned to dig deeper inside the code philosophy and mindset.
- I learned to be passionate about problem solving.
- I learned a lot about myself, what I'm capable of, how hard I can work, how long I can stay focus on one problem.
And finally, I learned to code, and to enjoy it.
If you ever wanted to know how to code to build things and create new stuff, just go for it. I think it was the best investment (time and money) I've made for my professional career.
## The community
And that's the icing on the cake: you learn how to code, and you join a new community. Le Wagon's community is just a big advantage. You're always connected to it through Slack. You can ask question when you're stuck on a problem, or just asking for advices on your product. Some people post job opportunities. We ask each other questions. A lot of projects starts here. And it's great.
You're still part of Le Wagon months, even years, after finishing the bootcamp.
## What it takes
Before le wagon, I was reading a lot about computers, coding, framework and other stuff. I was on hacker news all day long, reading articles about the last trendy developer library. And of course, I tried to learn by my self. Several times. I spent hours on Codecademy, OpenClassroom, and EdX. After all, everybody, on Quora or Hacker news, says coding is **easy**. Don't fool yourself. It's not. At least, not at the beginning. And that's exactly where Le Wagon is the most valuable thing for you if you really want to learn. Cause when you learn to program, you first learn the basics. But you don't know how it can be useful for creating a web app. You can easily loose your motivation just because you don't see the point. "When will I be able to make my own web application?”. At Le Wagon, you've got people surronding you, teasing you about what you'll be able to achieve few weeks later, and why it's important to understand this specific concept. And you just can't loose your motiviation. You don't even think about it. You just code, every day, from 9am to 7pm. And by the end of the bootcamp, you realize that, f**ck yeah, you can code, now.
Believe me, you'll be proud of yourself.
I found something I really love to do. And I'm part of this community where other people also love to code, and share their passion with the other alumni. It was just the best way to enter this world of coding.
One regret: I should have done it earlier. :-)
Why a coding bootcamp?
Before joining Le Wagon, I worked in several industries: investment banking (Macquarie), sports retail (Decathlon) and e-commerce (Rocket Internet). I’ve always had plenty of ideas and I knew one day I would need to make at least one of them real. When I finally decided to quit my last job, it was to start a very personal project : Take Away Trips, a web app to help people create and share personal travel guides. However, I found myself in a very common position: I had the idea, but how could I make it real? There were three possible options:
- Find a rocket science CTO to partner with me.
- Ask some digital agency to do it for me.
- Do it by myself.
The first option is the magic dream that never happens. The person I was looking for was actually the target of thousands of people like me. How can you be competitive with just an idea, to someone who receives thousand of « join me in the next unicorn company I want to create » propositions. After two months of active research attending meetups and asking my network, there was no doubt it was not the best option.
The second choice, eluding the fact that my pockets were not big enough to finance this option, had a big downside: speaking of a web startup, you are basically giving the ownership of your core product to someone else. On top of that, you can’t be fast and lean if the person who develops your app is not in the same room (even less if based in another country).
Finally, after considering 2) and 3) I told myself the best option was to learn how to build a dynamic website by myself. But indeed, how?
Why Le Wagon?
It is easy to get an idea of the learning curve at Le Wagon: there are dozens of hours of video records of Le Wagon’s alumni pitching live demo. Watching at them I told myself it really looked like what I was seeking: fast learning and best practices to be able to make, with real Ruby code, any idea for real in a minimum of time. The 2 month fullstack program at Le Wagon is clearly designed for entrepreneurs and I was very confident it was no bullshit. Simply because Boris, Romain and Seb, the three founders of Le Wagon are also entrepreneurs and they know how painful it could be to waste your time when you want to quickly ship a product.
The FullStack program
I applied to join #Batch 24 in Paris. First days of the program are clearly setting the scene: it’s going to be hectic but fun.
- Every day a new topic on which you can keep working from home thanks to a super well-made SaaS platform.
- Every day you get paired up with a different “buddy” to solve new challenges.
- Every day the same motivation because students at le Wagon really want to learn hence there is a very positive and uplifting atmosphere within the batch.
- And every day, teachers and teaching assistants are all available to give you best tips when you are stuck in your code.
During the two last weeks of the program, small groups of students work on their own startup projects. Then, the very last day of the program is the demo day where each team present the project they were working on. It is the ending point of 9 weeks of learning and it is such a great feeling to look back and tell yourself : I’ve learnt so many things in 2 months!
And now ?
We presented the project I had before joining the full stack program, [Take Away Trips](http://www.takeawaytrips.com/), during the demo day. Thanks to Le Wagon, I can now apply a lean approach to launch Take Away Trips for real. It looks clearly feasible to update the current version of the website and adapt features based on feedback of my first users. I expect to iterate this way for 2 months in order to get quickly a useable product. Hopefully, based on the upcoming new versions of my app, I will be able to raise funds to develop the activity and eventually be more legitimate to partner with a future CTO.
I strongly recommend Le Wagon to anyone who wants to start any web related project: this is the best way to really own your product and get on the right track in no time.
I started Le Wagon in January 2015 (Batch #6). Before that I had been a corporate finance consultant at one of the « Big Four » for 4 years (right after graduating from HEC a French Business School). I had no engineering background at all.
Le Wagon is in my opinion the best European coding bootcamp and I'd advise anyone to take up the challenge. They have a unique way of teaching the technical skills you need to work in a tech startup. It's also a great option if you are considering to launch your own startup. After Le Wagon, though I had no computing background before joining the program, I was able to code from scratch and launch a web application and an iOS app. I got selected to demo the app at the 2015 edition of Challenge.rs (http://challenge.rs/) in Barcelona. Le Wagon's teaching gave me the possibility to code the POC that I had in mind.
Now after Le Wagon
Now I'm a product specialist at Algolia, a startup that developed an extremely fast and relevant search engine for websites and mobile applications.
I just graduated from le Wagon 2 weeks ago (batch #24) and I can only encourage every aspiring entrepreneur to attend this awesome bootcamp. Here is a quick overview of my experience there.
Before joining Le Wagon, I worked almost 10 years in the cinema industry. I enjoyed it, had wonderful experiences, traveled a lot but something was missing. Besides my love for art, I was also a tech lover and my curiosity for the entrepreneur world was growing every day. I wanted to join the people who build the future and try to bring something better to this world. It quickly became obvious that learning to code was the next step. I wanted to be able to prototype a product, talk with other developers, understand how the products that I love are made but even with strong motivation, learning from any online courses was discouraging me:
- What do I have to learn first ?
- Why this language and not another ?
- Why am I able to validate a course and still don't see how to even start building anything ?
I was stuck in the Jungle. After reading some reviews of Le Wagon and checking their Youtube channel, I decided to join the course. What I have done in 9 weeks is beyond what I expected from the bootcamp. I don't think I could have done it alone even with a full year working on it.
Don't fool yourself, learning to code is hard. The first weeks were very rich of information, and sometimes frustration, but I was completely loving it! The secret of Le Wagon is somewhere here. Passionate teachers, exercises smartly spread to bring you step by step to the next keypoint. I took those 9 weeks like a journey and embraced the flow. More than skills what you will learn is an approach and a way of thinking like an experienced developer. You will be able to work in team and unchain yourself from the traps where many beginners stay forever. Being supported by teaching assistants that know what you are experiencing because they all went through the program is also very clever.
The community, the future
Spending 9 weeks with people who share the same mindset and coming from many different industries is also a strong reason for attending Le Wagon. Your network will grow fast and open your future to many new routes. All the students share a culture that is empowered by tools like Slack and Le Wagon's platforms. I also learned a lot about myself and now feel able to keep improving my coding skills. I can start from scratch any project and add new bricks to the solid base I have built during Le Wagon.
I started Le Wagon in April 2016 and I loved it!
Work hard and challenge yourself
I was working in a digital marketing consulting firm for 3 years when I started feeling the need to learn something new, something fresh. My job wasn’t fulfilling anymore, I felt I was missing something and I wanted a change. That’s when I thought “Why not coding?” So, I decided to join Le Wagon to work in a booming and challenging environment, to acquire technical skills and to develop an entrepreneurial mindset.
The whole experience lasts 9 weeks but time flies when you love what you’re doing! Le Wagon has a top-notch approach that enables any student - no matter what his background is - to quickly learn the basics of front and back web development. The program is very well conceived; you spend enough time learning the core concepts of web development, you switch between back-end and front-end languages, you learn how to use frameworks, you work on a copy-cat of Airbnb’s website and you get to code your own web app during the last two weeks. The tools and resources we use are extremely efficient and built in-house by Le Wagon’s team which makes the learning experience even more interesting. But overall, I guess that people are Le Wagon’s best asset; the teachers are super smart, inspiring and dedicated to our success and the students are ambitious with a great positive mindset. You will never be alone at Le Wagon; the community is tightly-welded and enthusiastic; there is always someone for you when you need help – a student, a teacher or an alumnus.
Learn more about yourself
When I first started the program I had no idea that I would end up prototyping my own product, Matchee, a C2C web app to buy and sell clothes nearby. Honestly, my first two days at Le Wagon were kind of harsh, I wondered if I would be able to make it till the end. Again, the program is intensive, you should be ready to dedicate yourself to coding during 2 months but the challenge is worth the time and the effort spent!
The 3 last weeks of the program (copycatting Airbnb’s website + prototyping a product) were my favorites. Working in a team with other developer students is super challenging and rewarding. You learn a lot about yourself and you start imagining your future as a coder. I, for example, developed my MVP with 2 amazing guys who became real friends. We’ve managed to implement technical features in our web app that we’d never thought we’d be able to code before (tinder-like swipe/match, messaging functionalities…). I know that I would have never done so much in so little time without taking the course – big up to Le Wagon talented staff for that!
And now, what's next?
Joining a web native startup as a Product Owner working hand-in-hand with developers (they don’t impress me anymore <3) + improve the concept of my MVP to work on it as a side project. Le Wagon is definitely a life-changing experience!
Hi all! I am a ‘Le Wagon’ alumni from Batch 11 (summer 2015). Le Wagon has been tremendously helpful in my personal and professional development and I wanted to share my experience with you.
I came from an aerospace engineering and corporate finance background. I had worked 1 year in several early stage startups and 2 years in strategy consulting. I was looking for a change but was not very clear on which direction to take.
I would strongly recommend Le Wagon to those who are looking: to aspiring developers, to aspiring Product Managers, to aspiring CEOS, to all those who would like to land on positions that are closer to a (tech) product.
Learning a skill in the best conditions
Teachers and teaching assistants at Le Wagon are 100% committed to your success and adapt their methodology to the students’ level, which is especially relevant at the start (when all students do not have the same programming background) and at the end of the bootcamp when students are carrying out their own project and need expertise on very specific topics (e.g., some students would use React for their project).
Of course, if your goal is to become a ‘fullstack’ developer, there is a long way to go after Le Wagon, but those who are motivated and stick to it become very successfull.
Understanding a whole ecosystem
When I joined le Wagon, I knew what agile development meant, but I did not know who was doing what. If you are interested in tech but the roles within a tech team are not clear to you, I would highly recommend that course. After 2.5 months, you are able to have an educated discussion with a UX designer, an UI designer, a front-end, a back-end developer, and a Product Manager.
Learning to code - if need be :)
Le Wagon program embeds courses on the lean methodology during which students build a product from scratch, without a single line of code - only by connecting existing services. A must for future bootstrappers !
Above all - learning to learn
Learning to learn is the one skill that should be in everyone’s survival kit these days! Our generation has to learn one, if not several skills per year and we have to be equipped with the right mindset to absorb that knowledge.
Learning to learn is by far the most valuable skill that I have learnt at Le Wagon. Why and how? Because coding is harsh - Your program does not work - But it did yesterday at 11pm! - Now it is all bugged - You have to fix it - You have no clue what the problem is!
The only thing you DO KNOW is that you won’t give up until it is fixed and that you have plenty of resources and people to help you out.
Our latest on Le Wagon
Over 1000 coding bootcamp graduates entered our sweepstakes competition to win a $500 Amazon Giftcard just by leaving a review for their school on Course Report. This time, our lucky winner was Thomas from French coding bootcamp Le Wagon! We caught up with him to find out a bit about his coding bootcamp experience and why he decided to attend Le Wagon.Continue Reading →