The Honest Guide for Coding Bootcamps

Alberto Carreras
3 min readMar 8, 2020


A collection of thoughts after a full-time software engineer bootcamp

Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash

If you are reading this article, the chances that you’re considering applying to a software engineer bootcamp are pretty high. I was in your position a year ago. I quit my previous job at an environmental not-for-profit in NYC, went to Flatiron School, and got a six-figure software engineer job in a high-tech company in San Francisco.

This article could end here: another success story. However, I want to share a collection of thoughts, learnings, and humble advice for each phase throughout a bootcamp.

When you land a job in tech after a bootcamp, many people reach out via LinkedIn. They want to have a conversation and learn from your bootcamp, job search, as well as posterior first-job experiences. I still remember those days when I was reaching out to people trying to build up my network. Now, from the other side, I’m always happy to schedule a video call or coffee. [2024 Note: I used to be available and excited to chat and support others. However, nowadays I always redirect people reaching out to a few articles I wrote. In rare cases people have further questions to discuss in person. I found myself not having much to add to the conversation that I didn’t already write down. Not more career tips! On top, I don’t have much bandwidth.]

Sharing our stories and experiences is important. On my journey, I realized that I didn’t have enough information when I decided to drop everything and enroll in a programming bootcamp. Most conversations around this critical decision didn’t prepare me for my new career adventure. I had some data points from friends who successfully went through the same experience -word of mouth marketing!- but that was it.

Most people who land jobs after attending a bootcamp share their success stories without providing insights on their learnings and strains. We tend to believe that becoming a millionaire happens overnight and forget that it takes decades to build wealth. Similarly, we take for granted that we will get a developer job after attending a four-month training, but we miss that it takes more than a bootcamp to succeed.

My goal is to help you make better-informed decisions if you want to attend a bootcamp. If you just finished one and are starting your job search, I hope it gives you some guidance and encourages you to share your story in the future for those who follow

Chapter I. Considering a Bootcamp

Chapter II. Bootcamp Readiness

Chapter III. Bootcamp Outcomes

Chapter VI. Job Search

Chapter V. Career Development and Growth

If you found this article useful, share it with anyone considering a bootcamp or already in the process of becoming a software engineer.

Thank you for reading this article and good luck with your future endeavors!

Note: Through the article, I made references to several books and resources that helped me. I highly recommend these reads even if you end up not taking this path. Some of these are Amazon Associate links, so I earn from qualifying purchases.