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Telegraph Academy

Oakland

Telegraph Academy

Avg Rating:4.23 ( 48 reviews )

Telegraph Academy is a software engineering career accelerator based out of Oakland for people of color underrepresented in tech. It was one of the first schools to launch as a part of the White House’s Tech Hire Initiative. Telegraph Academy’s curriculum was developed in partnership with Hack Reactor; and its full-time, 12-week immersive program focuses on JavaScript and related technologies. The immersive program is split into 6 weeks of technology learning and 6 weeks of project building.

Telegraph Academy also runs Telegraph Prep+, a part-time prep class that is the first step towards getting into the full-time immersive program. Telegraph Prep+, which teaches the fundamentals of JavaScript and prepares students for Telegraph Academy’s admissions process, is delivered onsite and online via livestream.

Recent Telegraph Academy Reviews: Rating 4.23

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Hey there! As of 11/1/16 Telegraph Academy is now Hack Reactor. If you graduated from Telegraph Academy prior to October 2016, Please leave your review for Telegraph Academy. Otherwise, please leave your review for Hack Reactor.

  • life changing
    - 9/18/2016
    Liz • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    Transformative experience. An organization which is also a family.

  • Garland Riley • Graduate
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    The curriculum was poignant but pretty grueling. The instructors were amazing. They were prepared, informed and genuinely invested in our success. Once a week there was a moment where I was overwhelmed and wanted to quit but there was always someone from the support staff ready and willing to listen to my ravings and grievances. Truly he hardest but most rewarding experience of my life. I started from being incredibly uncomfortable with high level concepts to building software myself without worry. Anyone looking to take the plunge into tech I highly recommend TGA.

  • Arnoldo Munoz • Graduate
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    Today im graduating from Telegraph Academy and the last three months have been very intense a lot of long hours and hard work I have accomplish my goal of being a software engineer. My experience at TGA was great even though there were rough moments, but the staff did a great job at making sure they kept me focus so I could accomplish all my goals. The staff is genuinely wants all of its students to succeed and they really do their part to make sure that you are successfull. The most value skill I learn while at TGA was learning how to learn. I now have the confidence that I can learn anything. The community and support was the second most value thing I gained. I know I have a group of individuals that are supportive and always willing to help each other.

  • Nicolas Bauer • Graduate
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    Attending Telegraph Academy was a great overall experience.  The program was recommended to me by my current employer as an opportunity to start my career in the field of web development.

    Just to give some context, I already had experience with VBA programming going into the program, but not extensively with javascript or web applications.  After completing the program, I felt very comfortable working with the entire MEAN stack, and understanding how web applications work. 

    It is explicitly stated from the start that the program does not guarantee a job and is designed to turn their students into autonomous engineers.  Help is given sparingly from support staff to encourage self-discovery and student-to-student interaction.  So don't expect them to show you how to be an engineer, you have the fight your way through your own battles. Working through your own bugs and articulating your work to others is sometimes painful, but part of the learning experience.

    Some criticism of the program is its design to give minimal feedback, which is a method of teaching that is unconventional.  I would like to have been given more feedback/code review during my enrollment.

    Also I would point out that credit for the positive experience is largely due to the amazing colleagues that were selected to be in my cohort and the staff, which created an light-hearted yet professional atmosphere where everyone was constantly improving themselves. 

    Since graduating Telegraph Academy, I am now working as a full-stack engineer and have used every skill that was taught in the course in order to create apps that benefit those in my company.  It is truly rewarding to have the skill-set to change people's perspectives about their day-to-day work experience. Thank you TGA.

    I would recommend this course to someone who is serious about starting a web development career and is prepared to persevere through challenges, day in and day out.

  • LeChristopher Blackwell • Graduate
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    This school has provided me what can most simply be described as 'The Best Educational Experience Of My Life'. I found out about Telegraph Academy in July of 2015 and saw it as an opportunity to change my life. I had always been on computers alot, loved critical thinking and problem solving, but had absolutely no experience coding. This raving 5 star review really doesnt mean anything without reasons, luckily, TGA provides plenty. I'll address my personal experience with each of the categories reviewed.

    Curriculum - I entered Telegraph Academy by first going through the prep course. As a pre-requisite to the prep, the JavaScript CodeCademy track had to be complete. This natural filtration filled my class with motivated self-starters, an amazing environment for a budding, future engineer. The material was dense, with the intent of giving a glimpse into life in the bootcamp. I actually had to, after the first two weeks, move to the next class and repeat the first two weeks just to feel confident enough to take on the last two! I am not a guy who shys away from a challenge often or admits defeat ever, but that had to be done haha (And I like it that way!). Prep really solidified the concepts learned from CodeCademy, the foundations for TGA bootcamp, and the interview. I interviewed twice, two months apart. Why? The interview is hard. Why? Because from the moment your accepted until graduation you will be pushed to your intellectual limits. The Post-Interview acceptance Pre-Course Materials are a real gut check to see if TGA is for you. Your hand wont be held and while "Pre-course Parties" are hosted often for support, many questions about the material will deliberately not be answered. There's no more retainable method of obtaining information than to seek it out for yourself, TGA is aware of and fosters this process throughout its curriculum. From Week 1, TGA takes the momentum you had built when studying the precourse materials and provides the structure to multiply it. Weekly Assesments help you to keep tabs on subjects you can improve upon. The first 6 weeks arm you with core software engineering skills (including but not limited to; Data Structures, Database Management, Application deployment..). The last 6 weeks teaches you to apply those skills through self-directed projects, and exposes you to the dynamic of engineering with a group, with deadlines.. In addition to the required curriculum mentioned above, TGA frequently has Software industry professionals come and speak to the class.

    Instructors: The Instructors are who really made the experience for me. I had the privelege to be taught by Jamil Lawrence, and Claire Bendersky for my junior half and Marc Christophe for the senior. They each brought a unique past, skillset and perspective but shared this energy of loving to teach and a great sense of humor. Claire brought a 'You-Can-Do-This' attitude to every lesson that made the material seem far less intimidating. Jamil loves to teach, it's clear as day, and he's good at it. Many times as both a junior and senior I would be losing my mind, patience, lunch, all of it, over a problem and he would actully stop what he was doing, work THROUGH the problem with me and then drop some engineering proverb for me to chew on through my cooldown("Improve yourself 1% everyday, thats how greatness is achieved"). Marc fosters the process of becoming an autonomous engineer with thoughtful council during application development. Marc's experience provides insight into many problems engineers face in and out of TGA, also, Marc is hilarious.

    Job Assistance: I am 8 weeks into my job hunt and I am shocked at the level of support provided by TGA. To be transparent, I am making a very difficult transition. I have a very weak working history with no technichal experience and no formal education to speak of. Anyone who has been on a Job Search will tell you it takes a mental toll on you. My Outcomes (Post-Graduation) correspondent Mo Akinde is so unrestrained in the effort she brings to helping students there is only one, obvious explanation: She loves helping people succeed. I really feel like she just WONT let me fail, period. I appreciate her frequent check-ins with me, helping me to schedule my time, and continuous iterative reviews to help me create a professional resume. Even as just an ear to listen to your Job Search woes, Mo is gonna try to help. Through this difficult process she has been and actively continues to be unbelievable.

    Overall Experience - I loved It. As a graduate I often actually find myself MISSING BOOTCAMP. 11+ hours a day, 6 days a week, THEY MADE ME MISS THAT?!?! Yes it's true. When at TGA, ask anyone around you about themself and prepare to be amazed. You'll encounter everything from Ivy League grads to folks like myself, Highly motivated, self-educated, self-starters. I can promise during your time @ TGA you will have a disagreement with a classmate, its just the nature of working with people. The beautiful part about this is that while you may not agree with your classmate, their intellect is undeniable. I never felt like I was arguing with someone over a knowledge gap, only perspectives. The TGA community and the people it brings in are a welcoming bunch, enthusiastic about both tech and the mission to increase diversity in a laregly homogenous field of work. Albrey and Bianca are both extremely approachable by students and its clear they make it a point to be that way (they are easily busy enough NOT to be this way). I believe TGA is the greatest opportunity so far in my life and I'm eternally greatful to the staff and community for making the experience so fantastic.

  • Cristian E. Avalos • UX Software Engineer • Graduate
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    I am one of the first cohort graduates (my cohort ended on September 2015).

    Let me start by saying that I have a bachelors degree in Computer Engineer. At the moment I am a fulltime software engineer working at InRhythm. 

    When i got out of college, I started looking for entry level positions. It was really hard to get one even tough I graduate with high GPA. (3.63). I was able to get offers for an intership which trains me for about 3 months and then I am hired fulltime for 2 years with a salary of 38k on the first year and 42k on the second year. 

    A friend of mines recommended me to get into a bootcamp and I looked for many here in NY, and also in CA. TGA helped me on getting a loan that will pay the tuition to attend the bootcamp ( which otherwise I would never have get into one because is too expensive). 

    To compare, I completed 3 semester in college in about 2 weeks at the bootcamp (we did data structures and algorithms on our first and second week). That blow my mind! After that second week I had no doubt that I have choosen a really good bootcamp and that I will learn a lot. 

    We worked very hard every single day during our time at the bootcamp, and it was definitely worth it!. I learned a lot more than what I learned in school. Right after graduation, big companies such as Chase, Solar City, Slack,to name a few, started to contact me for an interview. It was an amazing feeling!  

    The majority of my classmates from college are all working as entry level engineers or taking interships with salaries ranging from 25-50k, I am making ~90k plus bonus and I couldn't have done it without the help of Telegraph Academy. 

    To summarize, I would NEVER regret attending TGA. It changed my life forever. It would have taken me years to get to the level where I am right now and all thanks to TGA. 

    Thank you Albrey and Bianca.

     

  • Ryan McBride • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    I was unable to get a job in software development despite majoring in CS in college, and studying all the time on the side. The best I could ever get was a QA position, because I never had the time or will to fully commit to learning. When I lost my last job to an acquisition, I finally had the opportunity to learn. TGA took my basic Javascript knowledge and turned me into a full stack engineer. I don't get intimidated by coding pro less anymore, I get excited to work on difficult things. The most important lesson I learned at TGA was how to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Being uncomfortable means you're learning, growing, and getting better. I don't ever want to stagnate at my job, and now I feel like I won't. Thanks to the additional help they gave me with interview process I managed to get a job at Capital One.
  • Anonymous • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    It didn't take long to realize that community at the TGA's core -  Co-founders and Instructors alike are deeply invested in building a tightly knit community of software engineers and problem solvers. 

    TGA practices a very iterative approach to it mission of training software engineers and community building. 

    In all, TGA and its growing community and network is at you disposal in achieving your goals and addressing you expectations in a path to becoming a competent Software Engineer. 

  • Lauren • Student
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    There are many things about my experience that was surprising to me. As an experience programmer, the prep course really helped me to up my game. It was always challenging but at the same time the curriculum was actually fun.  I was never accustomed to pair programming but over the course of time I grew to prefer having someone else to think through the code challenges with.  The overall culture is very friendly and supportive. The lectures were always engaging. They were able to demonstrate so eloquently and almost even 'melodically' the material so that we could fully grasp the concepts being taught. Sometimes I am amazed looking back how much I have learned in such a short period of time.  I also noticed that they receive and hear the feedback so they can continually improve the quality of the program.  So overall it very much exceeded my expectations.

  • Andrew Lloyd • software engineer • Graduate
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    I came into the program with extensive experience in software development (C++/.NET, Microsoft stack), wanting to learn the new Javascript stack frameworks etc., and I was initially skeptical that students with no background in software could acquire a meaningful level of skills in just a few weeks. After volunteering for two months as a teaching assistant for the program's preparatory course, and then being invited to attend the full course, I changed my mind. The course moves very fast, covering a long list of frameworks and tools and concepts related to full-stack Javascript programming, with the second half of the course devoted to exploring those technologies more in-depth on actual projects. Ours was the first cohort to receive an introduction to React as a part of the curriculum, and three out of three student teams chose React as the basis for their "senior thesis" projects (in our case, using React Native to build a mobile IOS app), so things are constantly changing and being re-evaluated and updated. A great experience, but you'll only get out of it what you put into it.

  • Jazz • Graduate
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    A person often asks themselves if a hefty investment in nontraditional learning is for them, especially when there's a large price tag attached and no guarantees that it will all pay off. That's really what taking a chance on something new and innovative, like Telegraph Academy is all about. I really felt that Telegraph Academy tried to take the worry about the unknown out of the picture as early as possible by allowing every applicant and student to ask questions and conveyed complete transparency and boundless support along the way throughout the course.

    My journey began in their prep program, I was fortunate enough to receive a scholarship to one of their prep programs with only prior HTML/CSS and SQL knowledge and it gave me the tools not only to succeed in the admissions interview to get into the school, but really opened my eyes to the vast sense of community that drives the core of what Telegraph Academy is trying to build. You are not just a student or a punched ticket meant to raise the hiring stats for the school at large as they continue to grow, but a member of their family and you feel it every day. 

    After completing prep and getting accepted, I took the plunge and invested myself into what I considered to be a replacement for a Master's degree. I put my life into TGA's hands and have never looked back since. I feel like I finally control over my place as a competitive force in the job market with a highly marketable skillset. Would I recommend them to a friend? Definitely. Would I recommend them to a family member? Asolutely. You know all that you need to know when you step through their doors. They have one mission and that's to ensure your success as a software engineer.

  • dj
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    Following one of my interviews to get into Telegraph Academy, I asked a current student her opinion of the program. She told me that TgA was more difficult than giving birth to her child. True to her word, I've found going through the Telegraph Academy curriculm to be the most difficult thing I've ever done. It's also been one of the most fun, best experiences I've ever had, and in hindsight I would do it all over again.

    Telegraph Academy is a 12 week software engineering immersive program geared towards women, people of color and people in the LGBTQI community, and the TgA mission is to promote diversity in tech. The curriculm focuses on Javascript, using it as a teaching language to cover things from core computer science concepts to popular JS frameworks amongst other things. Expect to be uncomfortable and frustrated throughout the program, and to become increasingly ok with being uncomfortable as you progress. Answers are not handed to you like in a traditional k-12 or even university setting. Instead the staff will point you in the direction of the answers, (metaphorically) hand you a map in a language you've seen but aren't fluent in and tell you they believe you can find your way. If you get lost, or stray too far from the path, the instructors are there  to help guide you back in the correct direction. Telegraph Academy will teach you to learn in a different way, and at a much faster pace than you're used to, while also teaching you patience, communication skills, and to recognize and accept your own potential and abilities.

    The curriculm is hard. I've spoken with a Boston University computer science graduate who attended TgA, and he agreed that it's hard. One of my classmates has more than 15 years of experience as a software engineer, he joined our class to learn new skills, and he says that the curriculm is hard. I spoke to a former US Marine who went through the program, and though he said the Marine Corps was more physically taxing, Telegraph Academy was more mentally challenging. I'm saying it's not an easy program to get through. But well worth it.

    Telegraph Academy was founded by two Hack Reactor graduates, and the teaching staff is made up of TgA grads. Everyone on staff is amazing, patient, kind and knowledgable. I've found their assistance through this experience to be critical to my success, and have been repeatedly amazed at the support I've received throughout the program. Special thanks to the instruction team (Albrey, Bianca, Claire, Jamil, and Mark) as well as the support staff (Alan, Alex, Amora, and Mo). Every member of the TgA team contributed to my success in too many ways for me to count here.

    There are regular opportunities to give feedback to the staff on your experience, and I've seen some of the suggestions from my class being implemented for the one that followed. The instructors give feedback on your performance, which is very helpful in such a fast paced environment where you may feel like you aren't getting concepts. If the instructors feel you are falling behind, they let you know and help develop a plan for you to get back on track. But the ball is in your court; you have to do the work, and there is no hand holding. If you put in the time, you'll succeed.

    I would't recommend that everyone attend a program such as Telegraph Academy or Hack Reactor. The pace is stressful as all get out, and being in the same room with the same class of people 11 hours a day, 6 days a week (minimum) for 12 weeks isn't for everyone. But if someone were planning on attending an immersive program for software development, then I would highly recommend TgA. Despite being frustrating and exhausting, attending Telegraph Academy has been one of the best decisions of my life, and I don't regret it.