Recent MakerSquare Reviews: Rating 4.41
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Hey there! As of 11/1/16 MakerSquare is now Hack Reactor. If you graduated from MakerSquare prior to October 2016, Please leave your review for MakerSquare. Otherwise, please leave your review for Hack Reactor.
I attended cohort 24 in Austin, TX
Some advice before applying: Make sure you are serious about becoming an engineer. If you are doing this because you don't know what else to do with your career, or are expecting MKS to baby you every step of the way, this may not be the right place for you. Their methods are very much geared towards "making you a better learner". While there are lectures (Gilbert is a rockstar) and solid course material, it is up to the students to work together and solve problems without very much hand holding. The senior project feels exactly like a job, where you are responsible for the product from start to finish with no set daily schedule.
The program: It is rigorous. You WILL struggle. Do not let it get you down. There WILL be people smarter than you who will make you feel inadequate. Just remember it is not a competition! If someone is catching on faster than you, don't get discouraged... ask them for help! I always say that 95% of being a software engineer is failure. It's that 5% of aha! moments that makes it all worth it. I feel like I had a new aha! moment every single day here. It feels like you're struggling mightily, but when you get to the project phase, it's absolutely astounding how much you've learned in such a short period. Also, don't plan on having a social life during these 3 months!
Outcome: I was able to land a job 3 weeks after i graduated, working for a former boss, making 60% more than my last job with a better title (software engineer). I was able to negotiate using the awesome tactics that student outcomes taught us. I made $10k more in 20 minutes! It's amazing how few people actually negotiate their salary. MKS does a very good job teaching you these skills. I probably have a bit of an advantage over most people coming to MKS since I had 2.5 years experience, and a strong network of former co-workers here in NYC, but with the skills gained at MKS i am confident that every who graduates is strong enough for at least a Junior level job. I joined MKS knowing I would not be using their hiring network (which is mainly Austin, LA, and SF), so I can't really comment on that.
Negatives: MKS is not perfect, but they are always iterating and trying to improve. They are a startup, and it is apparent that they are experiencing typical startup growing pains. Also, your experience could be brought down if your cohort has some bad apples. Pretty much everyone I met was awesome, and I made some great friends, but the student body is very young, and some students are not mature enough to handle the kind of pressure involved with the program. MKS very rarely kicks anyone out, so it's possible that you'll have someone on your team not pulling their weight, dealing with emotional issues, being a jerk, or causing drama. (not all necessarily in my cohort, just what I've observed). MKS likes to spin it and say that you're going to have to deal with difficult people on the job, which is a great point, but not when we're spending a lot of money. Towards the end of my cohort, they hired someone will act as a student mediator to try to deal with these types of situations, which is a testament to how MKS listens to their students and strongly values their input.
My advice: DO IT! It was possibly the best 3 months of my life. I've never learned so much so fast, and the outcomes are real. Just about all of my cohort is employed. Have fun, don't take it too seriously, and Always Be Committing!
- MakerPrep Review- 3/22/2016Anonymous • Student • Campus: Austin
The reality was that classroom time was spent with the "teacher" displaying his code on the screen, half-heartedly explaining it, and then stating, "ok, now you try". We would then work on our own for an hour or longer. There was no real paired-programming or "work with other beginner developers." There was no collaborative environment--it felt like I was in Baskets Career College, receiving bad lectures and busy work--but we weren't attending a part time night class to merely pass for a certificate at the end, we were there to actually learn. There wasn't even any legitmate lecturing happening! The teacher was unorganized and never proactively helped the students, he just sat at his desk making conversation. Appropriately, half the class stopped attending by the end of it. I spent more time in class working through free online resources, which better prepared me for any tech interview, than working through the class material. I am not sure if this is a fair assumption, but I decided that the MakerPrep class is a reflection of the MakerSquare program itself, and decided not to interview for their immersive program. To anyone serious about learning the basics of programming, I'd suggest you take advantage of the numerous free online resources, all of which will do a better job of preparing you for MakerSquare or any other similar bootcamp.
I was stressed out the first 3 weeks of the program (as most people are) and felt as though I was an imposter on many many occasions. Then, we had a week break for Thanksgiving 2015 during which I put some of my skills to use and did some self study to review some of the material that I had suffered through during the previous 3 weeks. After the break, I all of the sudden had a few 'ah ha' moments! I was more confident in my ability to come up with solutions to the toy problems, and I started really understanding the material presented. Then one day, during the project phase, I woke up and thought to myself, "I am a software engineer". And it was true.
I was able to get a job after one week of completion of the program at a company in Utah. The company was so impressed with what I had learned in such a short period of time, that they made me the lead of the front end team. I couldn't believe it, and still cant until this day. Someone now pays me to play with code all day. It's un believable. I would say I wasn't even in the top third of my class (all varying backgrounds before MKS) and I have had enormous success post graduation. All thanks to MKS and their amazing system.
If you're contimplating applying, just do it. Apply. Today. You'll learn something from the interview process and your motivation to become a software engineer will skyrocket. Know that, you will be discouraged, frustrated, and feel like you don't belong throughout the process. But after you get in and start learning, you'll understand quickly that you had just made the best decision of your life!
- Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Austin
This review is for the Part-Time Front-End Web Development Course at MakerSquare.
I started the PT Front-End course this past March (2014) and spent 10 weeks, every Monday and Wednesday evening from 6:30 to 9:30, learning all about Front-End Web Development. I was a little hesitant when I first started the course because I was coming in with what I thought was relatively solid knowledge of HTML and CSS. I was worried the whole course would be one giant review of stuff I already knew and was tired of going over. I was 100% wrong!!
While we did review some things I already knew there was never, ever a moment when I didn't learn something new and valuable - even about something I thought I had already mastered. Whether it was a just a trick or a quick tip I hadn't ever learned, I left each evening feeling so excited about all I had learned and wanting to put it into action immediately. Despite feeling like I knew CSS and HTML already, going through this program at MakerSquare made me feel 100% more confident in my knowledge and skills and reassured me that I had learned from the best.
You can never know everything about front-end programming, or programming in general, because it's constantly evolving. One of the things I valued the most about this program and about MakerSquare in general is that I finally had a group that was involved in the web tech world in Austin (and all over the US). Most of my friends aren't involved in the tech community so MakerSquare was finally a major resource I could turn to in order to keep up with the ever changing tech world. I not only learned from the instructors, I also learned from my fellow classmates.
MakerSquare gave me an incredible confidence boost as well as knowledge I legitimately use everyday. I wouldn't have the skills and abilities I have today if it were not for the PT front-end program at MakerSquare. The decision to take this program has been the best decision I've ever made!!
- It was fun, educational, left me with a feeling of accomplishment, and I got to meet really cool people :)- 3/18/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
This review is for the June 2015 MakerPrep course.
For learning to program:
However, if you're not paying attention in class, and not actively participating to the fullest extent (this isn't college where you merely cram for the grade and doze off all the other time), then this class will be worthless to you. This class isn't for getting a certificate or diploma as there is nothing of the sort. They're not there to tell you to what to do. You're there to build your own skill and knowledge through actively working and it WILL give you a solid foundation before applying to HackReactor/MakerSquare.
They are EXTREMELY helpful and many a time they would stay behind class/weekends to help answer any questions that we had - class related or not. They are constantly iterating feedback from students and modifying the course accordingly. Any inputs you have are heard and taken seriously.
They're also patient. I did ask a lot of dumb questions and I rewarded their fantastic replies like a true politician being grilled on foreign affairs on national television - "Yes!!" with a look that would make a deer in the headlights blush. But as I mulled over their insightful replies (my same question asked in different ways), the understanding would slowly seep into the crevices of my mind along with an ancient ritual chant intended to improve the common man - "Getting strong now...Won't be long now... Gonna fly now". With each obstacle and difficulty, I slowly emerged from my shell with a desire to run on a cold Philadelphia morning, double fist pump on top of a flight of stairs, and go the distance with Apollo Creed. Being a reasonable man, I opted for the fist pump only.
Parking can be a little bit of a pain, but the metered parking outside only lasts until 6, so you won't have to pay after that! I have been told that there's also free parking a couple blocks away if you're willing to walk instead. Also, the food nearby tends to be expensive given that it's in Santa Monica. It's 15$ across the street for a single burger (organic/grassfed/etc.) I juggled a full-time job and this program AND commuted from the Pasadena area. So it is possible to do this program with a full-time job in case you're not ready to make a full-time commitment to programming. Also, if you like beer, there's also free beer for students.
Even if you don't go on to MakerSquare/HR - the value for the tuition is immense because it was fun, educational, left me with a feeling of accomplishment, and I got to meet really cool people :) and I recommend it wholeheartedly - especially if you're still on the border for deciding whether programming is right for you or you need a little push in your journey to becoming a programmer.
As for the results, I did do well on my interviews for MS/HR. Cheers!
- You will get ALOT out of this course.- 3/18/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
- If you are planning on attending a coding bootcamp, but aren't sure where to start, this class is the answer.- 3/18/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
I was a part of the August 2015 MakerPrep cohort and I cannot recommend the class enough. If you are planning on applying to MakerSquare (or any of the Hack Reactor schools) but are having trouble getting through the admissions challenge or technical interview, then this class is invaluable. I went in with almost no coding experience (other than intro HTML and CSS) and came out of the class ready to pass my technical interview with MakerSquare. The class is very quickly paced and some of the concepts may be tough for beginners to grasp, but the instructors are do a great job of making sure everyone is moving and learning at the right speed. If you are planning on attending a coding bootcamp, but aren't sure where to start, this class is the answer.
- Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
- Is it worth money and the time? HELL YES.- 3/18/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
Review for June 2015 MakerPrep course
Who this class is NOT for
If you are looking for an easy breezy class that spoon feeds you material step by step without any ambiguity, this class is NOT for you. If you get frustrated easily by new, challenging material and tend to want quick answers instead of earning the answers yourself, this class is NOT for you.
Who this class IS FOR
The lectures and exercises that you will be tasked with will push your limits of problem solving and patience. There will be others in the class who get through the exercises easily - don't let this discourage you. Take your time making sure you understand the concepts behind the exercise and nuances of the code structure. Don't worry about making your mini-projects spectacular - learn the concepts, learn how to execute them, ask questions, then move on to the next one. The pace will be fast. Try to finish at least 60 - 80% of most of the exercises. You can always go back to finish them on Saturdays and Sundays or after the class is over.
Is it worth money and the time?
In short, HELL YES. Just suck it up for 4 weeks and do the class. Tell your friends and family that you will be busy for the next month. When you have a bad coding day (none of your code works, you feel like the stupidest person in class, you feel like you're falling behind) just SHOW UP the next day and the day after that. Just do your best and remember that you are there to learn what you don't know. You will be amazed at how far you've gone in such a short amount of time. Remember that there is a scholarship geared towards women and minorities. Apply! I got 2/3 of my tuition covered. Thanks, MakerSquare! If you have to pay full price, it's still worth it.
The instructors and staff are fantastic. They are 100% invested in your success. Everyone is friendly, approachable and knowledgeable so ASK questions. Most likely you will bond with a lot of your classmates. Get to know as many of them as you can and follow the rule of reciprocity -offer help when you see someone struggling and be willing to accept their help as well. Sometimes you just need someone else to walk through your code with in order to find some minor mistake like a missing bracket. Keep in touch and form study groups.
During the week, there is free street parking after 6:00. I never had a problem finding a spot just a block away. On Saturdays, parking is a bit trickier - get there early and park for free near 11th and California (north of Wilshire Blvd). Consider the walk your exercise for the day.
- I feel much more confident diving into projects- 3/18/2016Evan G • Graduate • Campus: Los Angeles
- I can say that I became part of the MS family- 3/18/2016Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Austin
- Anonymous • Graduate • Campus: Austin
I took the Part Time Front End course at MakerSquare and absolutely loved it! The instructors are fantastic, knowledgeable and supportive! As a complete beginner I was really encouraged and empowered to learn more about the varied topics handled in the course! Not to mention that all my classmates were incredibly motivated and overall great friends!
Having a solid understanding of the different aspects of the world of Front End web development, do I have the confidence on working on and creating my own projects! There's still much to learn, but Maker Square provides us with a solid base of knowledge paired with great instructors and a great environment to be in! Highly recommend MKS to any wanting to learn!