Rithm School

San Francisco

Rithm School

Avg Rating:4.99 ( 76 reviews )

Rithm School offers a full-time, 16-week, full stack web development immersion bootcamp in San Francisco, California and will be conducting cohorts remotely through the end of 2020. Their curriculum is centered around JavaScript and Python, and also covers PostgreSQL, Flask, Node, Express, React, Redux, and computer science fundamentals. Rithm School aims to help students to not only gain a deep understanding of the industry but also graduate with a portfolio of real-world projects in which they have been involved. Rithm School was founded in 2016 in San Francisco, California to provide access to a full-time accelerated learning program, with class sizes small enough to provide one-on-one instruction with instructors who have experience in both teaching and web development. 

The application process is multi-step, including an online application; a phone call with the Director of Admissions; preparation for the technical interview using a free JavaScript prep course; and a visit to the campus for the problem-solving-focused technical interview. Rithm School will notify students if they are accepted, or suggest more study and a repeat interview.

The final weeks of the Rithm School program involves job readiness preparation and real-time practice. Upon graduation, students receive mentorship from a career coach who can help with connections to companies requiring tech skills, including open opportunities with partner companies, including Slow Ventures network.

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  • Full-Time Web Development

    Front End, JavaScript, Python, React.js, SQL, GitHub
    In PersonFull Time45 Hours/week11 Weeks
    Start Date October 25, 2021
    Class size12
    LocationSan Francisco
    Rithm’s full-stack web development program is a four-month accelerated learning experience. We take independent and thoughtful students and turn them into confident and creative full-stack developers. We value an intimate learning community and therefore our class sizes are 8-16 students. Our curriculum is centered around JavaScript and Python, and also features two weeks of time to contribute meaningfully to open source.
    Available through SkillsFund
    Tuition Plans1-3 year plans offered
    ScholarshipRithm awards scholarships of up to $12,000 to support diversity and strong merit.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelN/A
    Placement TestNo
    More Start Dates
    October 25, 2021 - San Francisco Apply by October 01, 2021
  • Mack Cooper  User Photo
    Mack Cooper • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Rithm is an incredible bootcamp and I had a great experience! The material is very relevant and constantly updating to keep up with the technology trends in the industry. I always felt the work we were doing or the concepts we were learning were highly practical tools that we would need in the job, and now that I'm in the workforce, I see just how true that is.

    The work is definitely challenging, but the guidance from the instructors was excellent and the small cohort size made it very easy to ask questions and get hands on assistance with any concept, or project. Frankly, I sought out Rithm because I knew it would push me, and that's exactly what I got.

    Leaving the bootcamp, I felt fully prepared for both the interview and job search process along with whatever job would come my way. Zach (the Career Coach) did a great job of getting us ready for the job search and was always available for questions and assistance after the bootcamp ended.

    Overall, Rithm School is a great community of instructors, students, and alumni who genuinely care about getting you prepared for and educated in this industry.
  • Truly the best!
    - 5/13/2021
    Claire Casey  User Photo
    Claire Casey • Software Engineer • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
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    I thought after reading so many glowing reviews that Rithm wouldn't live up to the hype, but it really is as incredible as others say! I received an offer at my dream company, The New York Times, 3 weeks after graduating from Rithm, which I truly don't think would have happened if I hadn't attended Rithm (side note: this was really fast and I do think part of it was definitely luck, but part of it was also attending a bootcamp that gave me the skills and confidence to succeed in an interview just a few weeks after graduating). Below is a quick summary of my experience:

    Why I chose Rithm (& would chose it again!!):
    • Small class size & collaborative culture - my class was 10 people with 2 instructors and 1 TA. With pair programming, cold calls, and a great classroom atmosphere, I was able to feel really close to everyone in the program even though it was all remote. Everyone at Rithm is  talented and motivated while being caring and pushing others to grow as developers. I was amazed by how often my peers would share tips throughout the program or job openings after the program, and it really felt like everyone wanted each other to succeed as much as themselves. 
    • INCREDIBLE instructors - I studied engineering at a good university and have been taught by great professors, but somehow Elie & Joel (& Brit as the TA) exceeded my previous experiences. They were patient, funny, caring, and so talented, and I would join the program again just to be taught by them. The instructors at Rithm are deeply invested in your learning and growth and even check-up on you once the program ends. 
    • Curriculum - In addition to what you read online about the curriculum (Python & JS, company projects, etc), I thought Rithm also did a great job of stressing what it means to be a professional developer. During code reviews, the instructors would not only comment on the logic of our code but also on documentation and testing. There is also cold-calling during lectures which terrified me at first, but has improved my ability to speak on technical topics. When I was interviewing for jobs, this proved incredibly useful and has given me confidence starting my first full-time job.
    • Job support - Two weeks at Rithm are dedicated to interviewing and applying for jobs, and I never felt alone in the job search process. Zach (the career coach) is so helpful throughout the entire process, from figuring out when to start applying to reading over your negotiation email. 

    In summary, Rithm is expensive but worth it. I can't think of a negative aspect to write in this review, and I think that says something about how Rithm really has it figured out! 
  • Jon Wong  User Photo
    Jon Wong • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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     If you are looking for a coding bootcamp to attend, I would honestly just stop searching now and choose Rithm School. I was once a prospective bootcamp student and did extensive research on every bootcamp in the San Francisco Bay Area and I ended up choosing Rithm due to its small class sizes, well paced curriculum, and most importantly: its company projects. 

    As many of us know, small class sizes means that you are able to get more individualized attention from each instructor in the course. It makes it extremely easy to ask questions and get a response. Many other bootcamps have very large class sizes making it so that when you have questions or need help while you are working, it takes a ridiculous amount of time to get the help you need. If you truly want to take advantage of your instructors, then small class sizes are essential. Rithm paces their curriculum in a way that makes the material digestible instead of having to “drink water from a fire hose”. While Rithm may be longer than other bootcamps in terms of its duration, this added length really helps with truly understanding the material without having to feel like you are being rushed. The longer length also makes it so that you are able to get more support from your instructors over a longer period of time.

    The most important feature of Rithm is definitely the company projects. I want you to picture company projects kind of like mini-internships. These company projects give you real world experience working on a real live codebase. I cannot stress how much this gives you a leg up compared to all the other bootcamp graduates as you will leave Rithm with actual real world experience that you can then use in your job search.

    After the main meat of the course, Rithm also prepares you for the job search through their awesome career coach, Zach. Zach does an extremely good job of making sure that you are well equipped for the job search ahead by discussing interview best practices, job search best practices, and even self-care best practices. He will literally teach you how to hack the job search and make yourself stand out in a vast ocean of applications. 

    If you are looking for a coding bootcamp, Rithm School is definitely the way to go. However, I also want to preface this by saying that attending a coding bootcamp requires a lot of commitment and work on your end as well. Do not assume that going into any bootcamp will automatically land you a software engineering job with minimal work on your part. If you are willing to fully commit a few months of your life to learning, then Rithm School will definitely be a life changing experience for you. 
  • Will Grover  User Photo
    Will Grover • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    I really didn't imagine beforehand what a great experience I'd have at Rithm.

    What to expect (I think a lot of this applies to most Bootcamps):
    • You won't be made into an expert, or magically transform into an amazing developer in 4 months.
    • You'll be given context on a bunch of relevant web technologies, all while improving your skills as a coder. It's basically accelerated learning where you should come out with many of the tools necessary to get up to speed when you do land a job.
    • Around 40 hours per week in class (more if you want to do extra), and 6-9 hours on the weekends doing assessments (I spent more to go deeper into the topics). This is something I appreciated about Rithm - the Bootcamp is longer, but the pace is more manageable compared to some others.
    • Days start with (the numbers could be a little off) ~60-90 minutes of lecture, then 60-90 minutes of pair programming with a random classmate until lunch. 60-90 more minutes of lecture, then pair programming with the same partner until you're ready to go home.
    • When you get out, depending on where you want to apply you could find yourself behind on Data Structures and Algorithms (only spend a week on it). A lot of companies are not heavy on this stuff, but just something to keep in mind as it can take some time to get up to speed.
    • You won't be dropped once you graduate, they have office hours every week where you can go get job hunt related or technical advice, and they'll continue to follow-up with you until you get a job!

    What I loved most about Rithm:
    • Classmates! I was really impressed with their ability to find so many smart, friendly and motivated people.
    • Class size - 6:1 student-instructor ratio means you can almost always get help when you need it, and the fact that you're pair programming makes this ratio effectively 3:1 for most of the day.
    • Company projects - this is a standout feature of Rithm, and owes itself in part to the fact that the class size is small enough that they're able to find enough companies willing to let you work on their codebase. It's a one month internship where you work in 6 person agile teams and put to practice everything you learned during the Bootcamp!
    • Instructors - all awesome people who really seem to care about your success. You'll have a bi-weekly one-on-one where you can discuss your assessments, talk about how it's going, ask questions, or generally just make sure things are heading in the right direction. I'm giving them 4 stars here because, while they were most definitely a very positive part of the whole experience, there were some (infrequent) times when I felt like they couldn't help and I had to figure things out on my own. It really didn't make a difference in the end though.
    • Feedback loop - they frequently ask for feedback, and it really feels like they're rapidly evolving the course and making it better even during your time there.
    • The curriculum felt very well put together, well paced, and at a good level of depth for you to understand it without being too simplistic.
    • As you may have noticed from the other reviews, there is a large and growing community of people whose experiences were similar to my own, who would love to tell you their experiences, give you advice, or maybe even become a referral.

    Other things of note:
    • They gave us mentors! A former student now working as an engineer who you can meet regularly with to ask questions or get advice.
    • They had people come to speak with us and provide advice at the end of the bootcamp. This includes two companies, one of which gave us free interviews and hired 3 of my classmates, and another who offered to skip us past the screening process, and is the company I currently work at!
    • There's a slack channel where you can frequently find job opportunities post-graduation, including roles opening up at former grads' companies.
    • One of the underrated things about Bootcamps as opposed to self study is that you instantly get a team of people who can keep you motivated, practice interviewing, answer questions, share advice and generally make the whole job hunt process a lot more manageable.
  • Eric Jho  User Photo
    Eric Jho • Software Developer • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
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    In short, Rithm school is the best. 

    Previous reviews already point out why Rithm is a great Bootcamp. So, I would like to emphasize a couple of points that deserve more attention.

    1. Incredible instructors and a career coach
    Elie, Joel, and Tim taught my cohort. Not only they're knowledgeable, but also they're incredibly passionate about teaching and the industry. They were always approachable and they always focused on important fundamentals, tips, and tricks that you can not learn from an online course. They were huge for me to build a strong foundation to start my journey as a software engineer. I really do miss their classes because they are amazing at explaining difficult concepts in a succinct manner. Seriously, my only regret after the Bootcamp is not bugging them more. If you are going to join Rithm school, pick their brain and ask as many questions as possible because they will always have answers for you and sometimes even if they don't, they would go out of their ways to get those answers for you. 
    Also, Zach is the best career coach you can ask for. When you finish your Bootcamp, you are not done. You are just starting and the hard part begins. Job search. However, Zach is always there for you and does his best to help you. Having Zach to rely on, ask questions, and get help from was huge for me during my job search. I can not thank him enough.

    2) Students
    Through interviewing many students, Rithm school not only accepts quality students to each cohort but also Rithm always emphasizes the importance of respect and teamwork.
    Thus, during the Bootcamp, I was able to learn a lot not only from the instructors but also from the students in my cohort. They were motivated, smart, and personable. I was confident that even if after the Bootcamp, those students will do great and I was excited to grow as a developer together with this group. I was able to become great friends with them and we still reach out to each other. 
    Another thing to note was how helpful the Rithm community was. Whenever I reached out to different alumni, they were always willing to help and I can not thank them enough as well.

    So in conclusion, go to Rithm if you are willing to work and stay motivated. Rithm school is a place where the more you put in the more you get out.
  • Sarah Brooks  User Photo
    Sarah Brooks • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Before I get into everything else, I'll lead with my overall review, which is that I would highly Rithm to anyone willing to put in the upfront work it takes to prepare for the program. Once you're there, the instructors do everything they can to ensure that you are successful there.

    Before Rithm, I spent the first 2.5 years of my professional career in brand strategy consulting. I realized that my favorite part of my job was learning how the companies and products I was branding actually worked, which sparked a renewed interest in engineering and specifically programming. My exposure to coding before the boot camp was fairly minimal - I had taken two mathematical programming courses in college but had no experience with Javascript before taking their free online courses (their curriculum is open source).

    When I first started doing research into boot camps, I had narrowed it down to App Academy and Hack Reactor because those are the ones I had heard of. Then a friend told me about Rithm, and it was everything I wanted: smaller class sizes (capped at 18 so you can get to know your cohort well), instructors with industry and teaching experience (i.e., it's not somebody that just graduated the boot camp teaching you), a full-stack curriculum that covered multiple languages (Javascript and Python), a focus on work-life balance to prevent burnout (other boot camps tout their demanding curriculum requiring 80+hour weeks), real-world experience (there's a 3-week internship towards the end with a start up), and job support (the last 2 weeks of the program are dedicated to practicing behavioral and technical interviews). So I decided Rithm was my top choice, though I had read it could be pretty selective since, unlike other boot camps, they do all their filtering upfront. So instead of doing what Hack Reactor does and accepting most people and letting them drop out themselves when they can't keep up with the material, they do a good job of making sure everyone has the same fundamentals down before starting the program.

    Originally, I was planning on slowly working through some of their online courses (starting with their Javascript Fundamentals course) and then eventually applying in 6-8 months. I ended up liking their curriculum so much that I decided pretty soon that I wanted to apply much earlier. The first step in the application process is setting up a conversation with the Director of Admissions. She'll direct you to a set of ~50 practice problems and a few courses from their website you should complete before interviewing (the Fundamentals course I mentioned above plus the first three sections of Javascript Intermediate). Once you complete those, you can set up an interview, which will be a whiteboarding style interview (for COVID, this would be a screen share). From there, they'll get back to you within a few days to let you know if you got into this cohort or if there are areas you need to work on before applying again (you can interview up to two more times, but the first time you have to wait 6 weeks, the second time a few months).

    So all in all, it took me a little over 3 months to study, work through the problem set, apply, and get into Rithm (was working through this material after work). Once I got in, there were 80-120 hours of additional prep work (a few additional courses plus a few small projects and a personal website). I completed most of this in a two week period after I quit my job before I started the program). I joined their March 2020 cohort, and we had a glorious 2 weeks together in person before the shelter in place order went into effect in SF. I wish we had had more time together, but we all worked together to adapt. It was new for everyone, and the instructors quickly figured out the tech to emulate the in-class experience as much as possible.

    The three main differences between the COVID zoom classroom format vs. the in-person format were:
    1) When we were in person, there was this room we'd go to for labs in the morning and afternoon and the instructors would do walkthroughs to check in on people as they were working. Once we switched to online, it was harder for them to sense that a pair was struggling since they can't see us in the breakout rooms, but what they started doing was just popping into our zoom breakout rooms to check in and that was helpful.
    2) When you're in person, you can also see when other pairs are struggling and can often overhear that they're working through the same issue you are, so you can just join their group for some brainstorming, or at the very least you can commiserate together and know that you're not alone - it's hard material! In the breakout rooms, you can commiserate with your partner, but you're somewhat removed from that environment where you can hear other people struggling. What our cohort had to do to adapt is we had to start being more vulnerable over our slack channel during labs, like "hey, we're really struggling with X - has anybody else been struggling with that too?". And slowly we transitioned to being more communicative over slack to keep up the cohort's sense of community.
    3) In person, there were happy hours and game nights every so often where you could hang out with your cohort and other cohorts. We, unfortunately, didn't get to do this before we left, but we started organizing zoom game nights and happy hours on Friday afternoons to try to continue getting to know each other. That ended up creating a good foundation for us to continue supporting one another after graduation - our cohort continued to have a weekly stand up and happy hour where we could check in on one another during the job search.

    With all that said, I would highly recommend Rithm School. Everything that I mentioned above about why I chose them in the first place was exactly what I experienced at the boot camp - high-quality instruction from people who have a ton of experience, knowledge, and passion for teaching, getting to learn multiple languages and some of the most relevant frameworks and libraries,  internship experience, and job support from the end of the program throughout your job search. They also have technical and job support office hours weekly that you can drop in all throughout your job search (and beyond - people who already have jobs will drop in to ask questions about things that stumped them at work too). 

    During my internship, I was able to work out a lot of my insecurities and imposter syndrome so that by the time I started my new job, it didn't feel so scary, and I felt relatively comfortable within 2 weeks of starting. I started softly recruiting 2 weeks before graduation and got a job 5 weeks after graduation. I'm really happy at my new job - I'm a Full Stack Engineer at a pet health start up - and I owe much of that to Rithm for preparing me so well.
  • Emi Tsukuda  User Photo
    Emi Tsukuda • Software engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Before joining Rithm, I was a restaurant manager. I had absolutely zero technical background. Now I am a backend engineer at one of cloud native database company. Rithm school made this switch possible! There are so many bootcamp options but I will tell you why you have to choose Rithm school.

    1. Curriculum
    Rithm school teach full stack web development. They teach frontend development in Javascript and backend development in Javascript and Python. Which are pretty similar with other bootcamp. However, MAJOR DIFFERENCE is that they teach not only practical knowledge but also fundamental concepts behind the practical knowledge. This makes students to adapt new technologies and language easier and effectively. They also spend quite some time on CS fundamental and data structure which are often neglected by the other bootcamp. It is very possible that you have to do your interview or new job with unfamiliar language and technologies. The combination of practical knowledge and fundamental concepts that Rithm school teach you will definitely help to adapt them much more effectively.

    2. Class size
    Rithm school cohort is very small. My cohort was only 11 students. And we had 2 instructors and a lab instructor. Bootcamp moves very fast. We were introduced new concepts and technologies every day. This can be overwhelming and hard to catch up if you fall behind. However, thank to the RIthm small class size, we were able to get personal help from instructors and lab instructor one on one. This is very very variable advantage that Rithm school can offer you. You will never be left behind in Rithm school.

    3. Instructors
    Knowing technologies and languages and teaching them are totally different skill set. Rithm school's instructors are teachers as well as engineers. They are very passionate about teaching and helping students and trained to teach. This makes huge different how much you can learn from their lectures. They really care about students. Time during bootcamp can be stressful, but instructors at Rithm will definitely help you to get through that.

    4. Support
    Rithm school supports students many ways. They support you on technically and emotionally. Whenever you need support during bootcamp and job search, they are there to help you.

    At the end of days, you as student have to put effort and work to learn. But with Rithm school, you can learn everything you need to know in order to start new career as software engineer.

    I highly recommend Rithm school.

  • Nathan Mass  User Photo
    Nathan Mass • Product at Hulu • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    I recently completed the full-time immersive program at Rithm and strongly endorse the bootcamp. As most of the other reviews have positively note, Rithm places a critical emphasis on student learning. Small class sizes are tremendous and the low student-to-teacher ratio gave us all plenty of one-on-one time to ask directed questions and ensure understanding of the day's lecture or exercise. Additionally, instructors often stayed late with students and were easily accessible if needed.

    Choosing a bootcamp wasn't a decision I took lightly. I attended info sessions, interviewed, and researched all of the top programs in SF. Larger programs (not be named) seemed to be operating a business model of churning out students--this is especially true where students from a prior cohort (often only a couple months of finishing the program themselves) were tapped to teach the incoming class. This was a redline for me. I'm happy to report that the Rithm instructors each have years of instruction and job experience as software engineers. 

    What happened to me? I leveraged the program's curriculum and my product background to get a techical product management role at Hulu. 

    Again, I strongly recommend the Rithm program. Comprehensive curriculum with quality instructors who care about your learning.  Get in the Rithm!


  • Jacques Leupin  User Photo
    Jacques Leupin • Mobile Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    Read the reviews posted by others. Rithm school is as good (and maybe even better) than they say.

    Rithm focuses on small class sizes.  They teach the newest technologies.  As part of their curriculum, they also feature 'company projects' - this sets them apart from other bootcamps.

    I was able to land a job as a Engineer a few short months after I attended Rithm.

    If I could do it all over again, I would choose Rithm in a heartbeat.

  • Kenny Hwu  User Photo
    Kenny Hwu • Full Stack Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    If you've researched Rithm School as much as I had across Course Report, SwitchUp and Yelp, you probably had the same questions I did.  Let me put your mind at ease; no these reviews are not from bots, yes they are all posted by real graduates, and yes Rithm School is just that amazing!  I can only reiterate on all the advantages that make Rithm stand out that have been hammered in by so many reviews below:

    1. Company Projects: In terms of the post-grad job search, this matters - a lot.  Having real experience in a live production codebase that is magnitudes larger than personal apps and small projects counts for so much in the eyes of recruiters and engineering teams.  Most entry-level engineering roles involve less of creating things from scratch and more of going into an existing codebase blind, learning and navigating the code structure, and making tweaks and changes to improve the final product in a way that complements the existing methodology.  Being able to put this experience in your resume, and more importantly talk it up during interviews, puts you light-years ahead of most self-taught curriculums.

    2. Instructor Quality: While company projects help to get your foot in the door for a new job, it's really the learning and retention that keep you there and allow you to thrive in your career.  The instructors at Rithm are all top-notch in their knowledge of technical concepts, working methodology, and modern topics in the engineering industry. However, it's really their focus and experience as educators that set them apart from those at other bootcamps.  They continuously consider and tweak the material and teaching styles to ensure that each student comprehends the most relevant portions of each concept, and at the very least has an avenue to pursue further learning.  They genuinely want each person to succeed in their own personal goals, and will work alongside them to help navigate that path to success. That also means they are willing to call out areas that you may need improvement on, or if you're going down an irrelevant, tangential path. They're also hilarious.

    3. Small Class Size:  Class sizes generally range from 12-18 students, a far cry from the 30+ you'll find at other bootcamps.  The high teacher-to-student ratio allows for more dedicated time for each student to ask questions, receive more help, and pursue advanced topics if desired.  You'll also get closer to your classmates than you would expect as you struggle and bond together. The alumni network at Rithm is ever-growing, and genuinely looks out for one another.

    These are the big three stand-out features I felt really distinguishes Rithm School from other bootcamps.  Other aspects that are also high-quality are their focus on pair programming and learning collaboration, their late-stage and post-grad guidance and connections for job-searching, and a truly social and welcoming environment to build your network and friendships.

    Absolutely attend one of their many free evening meetups just to experience their teaching style, talk to the instructors, and ask a million detailed questions of every concern you might have.  Reach out to myself or the many Rithm alumni that will be happy and excited to talk to you about their experiences. And do that with any other bootcamp you're considering so you can make the best decision for yourself.  Transitioning careers is never easy, and while Rithm School will provide you with the best tools and mindset for making that change, in the end it will be up to you to push for what you want to achieve

  • Katie Gray  User Photo
    Katie Gray • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
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    This review is not short! But I wrote the novel I wish I could have read when I was gathering data on which boot camp to enroll in.


    A little of my background/coding journey: Prior to enrolling in Rithm school, I was a music teacher and band director in San Francisco for 3 years. I had no prior experience coding. I spent many hours scouring the internet looking for others with non-traditional backgrounds being successful after a coding boot camp. I failed the Hack Reactor interview twice, I failed the Rithm school interview twice, completed First Step Coding, and finally passed my third try at the Rithm school interview. However, I was the first in my class to get hired as a software engineer, just two weeks after graduation. The skills Rithm school taught me have allowed me to survive in thrive in my new role!


    PSA for any boot camp - do not expect to be spoon-fed a job offer, just as having a college degree does not guarantee you a job in your field of study. I frame this review as “for 24k, will Rithm school efficiently teach you skills that set you up for success for a career in software engineering?” tl;dr is YES.


    Rithm school is professional and transparent from end to end. It is very hip nowadays to say “everyone can learn to code,” and some bootcamps, unfortunately, have a business model based on “everyone can pay to learn to code”. A lucrative career in a job market that isn’t going anywhere is a sweet dream to sell. Some bootcamps I interviewed at were more than happy to accept me on the sole basis that I could kinda write a for loop, as long as I could foot the bill. Rithm school does NOT give off this vibe. They are clear on the educational objectives of their program as well as expectations for students. The top two things I was willing to shell out 24K for was the opportunity to add a highly marketable skill to my existing skill set and the internship to work on the codebase of a real-life company.


    I felt supported ramping up to a career pivot by Rithm school prior to even enrolling. Their material and exercises that are free to access online proved to be an excellent source for me as I began my self-study during my teaching career. They offer free in-person evening classes, which I was able to attend while working full time to get a sense of the instructors, their teaching style, and the Rithm space in FiDi. Angelina was thorough in answering my many questions about the program. The work and time that the people at Rithm put into these components were miles beyond anything that other boot camps I was considering demonstrated.


    The interview process helped me refine the objectives of my self-study. Having a set of Javascript “toy” problems to complete before the technical interview was really helpful. Additionally, the instructor Matt went out of his way to give me specific feedback to improve my skills for my next Rithm interview attempt.


    Small cohort size was a huge part of my choosing Rithm school. I had toured Hack Reactor (since acquired by Galvanize) and was immediately put off by the 80+ students per lecture. I was horrified by the Hack Reactor practice of throwing a pillow microphone to any student who wanted to ask a question during the lecture. I am not a shy person, but I know the way I learn new material best is to ask lots of good questions. My cohort had 12 students, including myself. I felt SO so comfortable raising my hand to ask a clarifying question. My instructors Matt and Micheal never shot me down and took the time to answer. My quality of learning would have suffered if I didn’t have the intimate learning environment Rithm provides.


    My instructors Matt and Michael were stellar. There was never a time where I felt the “uuuuuuuh what’s next” - I’ve seen many a teacher - myself included- fall into this, and I appreciated the professionalism that Matt and Michael showed up with every day. I feel fortunate that my personality and learning style meshed well with their personalities and teaching style. It’s always tricky when it comes to teacher preferences, as everyone responds differently to different personalities and teaching styles. Any instructor you have at Rithm will give you a quality experience, but I highly recommend dropping in a free evening class to get a feel of each instructors’ style. Matt was my assigned advisor, who I was able to meet with in a 1:1 every other week. This individualized attention, among many other things,  is what I was willing to pay half my teacher salary for. From a pedagogical standpoint, getting a teacher’s undivided attention and support is invaluable to learning. I utilized this time to go over concepts I was having trouble with, battle imposter syndrome, and get my resume and cover letter critiqued.


    The first 12 weeks of the program are what people usually think when they think “coding bootcamp”- learning many concepts in a short period of time. However, Rithm has struck the balance of lecture time and hands-on learning to accelerate your understanding. Yeah, you could sit in your house in the mornings and evenings and hack through a course on Treehouse/Udacity etc, but having experienced instructors to guide you through the nuts and bolts towards a tangible lesson objective is so powerful. If you are a band nerd/orch dork like me, it will feel like one of those multi-day high school band festivals, where you work your butt off for hours every day, but the infectious energy from your peers keeps you going. As a former teacher, I appreciate the organization and though they put into their curriculum. I had access to a google doc that detailed hour by hour what material and exercises we would be completed in the coming weeks. I had access to the lecture notes the night before, so I could read it then, take notes on it in the morning, hear it in lecture, and practice it in the lab. This focussed structure and organization allowed me to thrive and learn quickly.


    The labs were a good balance of lecture vs hands on learning time (“I do, we do, you do” teaching model). None of the labs felt like “busy work”, they lined up well with the concepts that were taught in the lecture. Written instructions for labs well written and organized - a clear goal for each one. There was a good starting code provided, clear and organized steps for the exercises. Sprints were multi-day labs working on a larger project, which could be featured in your portfolio. Having these jumping off points to build my portfolio was invaluable.


    Sidenote: I LOVED the space available to students. The office was clean, great couches and study lap things. I especially loved the whiteboard tables and walls! Writing out material in an organized way is a huge part of my learning style, I used the whiteboard tables daily in the morning to go over the lecture notes for the day. The lecture halls have excellent projectors that make it easy to follow along with the material. There are nice office chairs to sit in both the lecture halls and labs, with proper whiteboard tables. I mention this because I noticed that both Hackbright and Hack Reactor had students sit on the floor to take notes, and I couldn’t fathom being able to focus in that environment.


    Company projects were perhaps the biggest deciding factor in choosing Rithm school. I knew that coming from a nontraditional background  I was going to need something tangible to add to my resume. I know other boot camps have you build things for a portfolio, and that pales in comparison to Rithm’s offering to be able to work on a real-life company code base. For three weeks I was able to work on team of 6 of my classmates to contribute in a meaningful way to a company codebase. The experience of having morning standup (checking in with the team), learning a git workflow, writing tests, and adjusting to a large codebase were all factors that gave me a huge leg up in the job hunt.


    In terms of job hunting support, I will reiterate what I mentioned before - I went in knowing I was paying 24k for individual attention, a small cohort size, a well-organized curriculum, the office space, and company projects. I 100% received what I expected for the price. I knew that I would need to be proactive in my job search and to take what skills they taught me and run like mad. That being said, Rithm still does provide some basic job hunting support - resume work, time to work on your portfolio and website, mock interviews. It is more passive support than aggressive support. I am happy to hear that they have recently hired a career coach, who advises students to use many of the strategies that I myself used to get hired two weeks after I graduated.


    Having worked full time as a full-stack engineer for nearly two months now, I can say that Rithm truly prepared me well for my role. Although my company's stack is in Ruby/Ruby on Rails, the solid tenants of professional programming that the instructors instilled in me serve me every day. From test-driven development to pair programming to problem-solving, I feel prepared for whatever my job throws at me. This is an incredible feeling, especially thinking about how I was a k-8 music and band teacher just a year ago.


    The Rithm alumni network is an amazing resource to be able to tap into. When I was scouring for reviews about a year ago, the number of alumni was smaller, and I am thrilled to see it continue to grow. A fellow Rithm alumn who was also a teacher in a former career works just down the street from my office, and we communicate near daily our experiences in our job.


    I love talking about my experience at Rithm school as well as job hunting strategies. Please feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn if you would like to learn more about my experience at Rithm! I am happy to help the next person into this exciting career from a non-traditional background.

  • Zac Bennett  User Photo
    Zac Bennett • Software Engineer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    In short, Rithm was a truly incredible educational experience that allowed me to transition from my previous job as a high school math teacher to a full-fledged software engineer.  It’s hard to write something that hasn’t been already covered in depth below, but let me reiterate on two main points that make Rithm unique: the learning experience at Rithm, and the company projects.

    Rithm is an amazing place to learn full stack web development. The small class sizes make asking questions or getting feedback on your code a breeze. The lectures and exercises are of high quality and carefully structured to build on each other. They also constantly incorporate feedback into their lectures to make them more effective. My last note on this are the incredible teachers. I know what it looks like when a teacher is there just for a paycheck, and when a teacher is passionate about teaching and working with students. Without a doubt, the teachers at Rithm love teaching, and want to see you succeed.

    The company projects are one of the highlights of being at Rithm. Not only does it give you a feel of actually working on production level code, but it differentiates you from the other bootcamp grads out there (and there are a lot). It also gives you something concrete to talk about with recruiters and other engineers. I talked about my company project in every single interview. It showed how I could take project specs, break them down, work with others and deliver under a deadline. Which is what you do every day as an engineer.

    I was very fortunate in my job search and received two job offers in two months after graduating. I couldn’t have done it without Rithm and can’t recommend the school enough.