A Key Tool For Bringing Diversity to Tech

By Chevas Balloun

Last Updated: September 18th 2019

It’s no secret that the tech industry has lagged behind with regards to diversity. 


And these numbers are not just reflected at the professional level, but at the educational level as well. Only 27 percent of AP Computer Science exams were taken by women in 2017, according to Course Report. Only 20 percent were taken by underrepresented students.


But in recent years, coding bootcamps have created a more accessible option for people interested in learning to code, offering a localized, lower-cost and lower time commitment alternative to traditional computer science degrees. Data from Course Report shows that this is positively impacting representation in coding bootcamp enrollment, as female enrollment changed from 33 percent in 2012-2016 to 37 percent in 2018. 


Let’s look at how bootcamps have helped prioritize diversity in tech thus far.


Coding Bootcamps Let You Blend Work & Learning


As compared with traditional computer science degrees at many universities, coding bootcamps provide students the opportunity to learn code in a matter of weeks or months, and at a fraction of the cost of a CS degree. Bootcamps also focus on application, ensuring that you know how to apply your coding knowledge to real-life situations you’d encounter as a web developer. 


This short time table allows students to spend less time away from work while learning to code. In fact, community coding bootcamps such as Nucamp enable students to take a majority of their coursework online, with localized weekly in-person workshops for collaboration. This makes it possible for students who have to work to support themselves and their families a way to build their coding skills.


Fill this form to download every syllabus from Nucamp.

And learn about Nucamp's Coding Bootcamps and why aspiring developers choose us.

*By checking "I Agree", you are opting-in to receive information, including text messages from Nucamp. You also agree to the following Terms of use, SMS Terms of use & Privacy Policy. Reply STOP to stop receiving text messages.

Serving Traditionally Underserved Regions


Over 50 percent of all bootcamps in the US are based in just 10 cities. That’s incredibly limiting! Students wanted to attend these full-time bootcamps often have to move in order to make it work. This up-front cost in moving combined with a likely increase in cost of living make these opportunities hard for lower income students to actually attend. 


However, community-based coding bootcamps offer an alternative - remote learning paired with localized, weekly in-person workshops. These minimize the commute to in-person meetings, allowing you to enroll in bootcamp without moving to another place. Additionally, community bootcamps are located in smaller cities and towns, in addition to big cities, helping reach students traditionally overlooked by larger coding bootcamp alternatives.

A key tool for bringing diversity to tech.


Educational Background Doesn’t Predict Success


Don’t have any prior coding experience? No problem. Educational background is not a predictor of success in coding bootcamps. Data from Course Report shows that the average bootcamper has never worked as a programmer, and often they do not have a background in tech. Yet job retention and salary data remain high in bootcamp graduates - according to Course Report, the median salary increase for bootcamp graduates was 49 percent. The same report found that 30 percent of coding bootcamp graduates did not have four-year degrees. 


What does this mean for diversity? Jobs in tech have usually only been open to those who could attend universities and get a four-year college degree. Coding bootcamps are becoming a way for these individuals to bypass barriers traditionally standing in the way of fulfilling, high-paying careers. 


Fill this form to download every syllabus from Nucamp.

And learn about Nucamp's Coding Bootcamps and why aspiring developers choose us.

*By checking "I Agree", you are opting-in to receive information, including text messages from Nucamp. You also agree to the following Terms of use, SMS Terms of use & Privacy Policy. Reply STOP to stop receiving text messages.

Corporate Investment in Bootcamps


With an increasing demand for engineering and computing positions — 1.4 million computing and engineering positions need to be filled by 2020, according to a report by Tech.co — many companies have also realized the value of offering bootcamps and apprenticeship programs to help employment meet demand. 


Many companies that value diversity and inclusion are investing in programs to help with job recruitment and staff education. Organizations have emerged to help with this programming, such as the nonprofit Project Include, which provides resources for small and mid-stage startups to implement change.


Others have created apprenticeship programs to train aspiring coders from diverse backgrounds. For example, Twitter began a program in 2019 that will bring on full-time employees to rotate throughout the company’s technical teams for a year. Howard University also partnered with Google in 2017 to open a campus at the Googleplex, increasing recruitment of software engineers from Historically Black Colleges and Universities.


The Future of Diversity in Tech


Diversity is also likely to increase at many tech companies because of time. We are likely to begin seeing more changes in diversity at higher levels in tech companies as graduates from some of the earliest bootcamp programs are likely to move into positions of power. Not only will this help change the “face” of tech, but it will also enable leaders to further implement policy that encourages diversity at all levels in an organization.


There is undoubtedly continued room for growth in diversity and inclusion in the tech sector, but these opportunities are likely to further influence change as time goes on and the sector continues to grow.


READY TO SEE IF CODING IS RIGHT FOR YOU?

 

Come check out the nearest community coding bootcamp in your city or town. Click here to get started.

N

Chevas Balloun

Director of Marketing & Brand

Chevas has spent over 15 years inventing brands, designing interfaces, and driving engagement for companies like Microsoft. He is a practiced writer, a productivity app inventor, board game designer, and has a builder-mentality drives entrepreneurship.