In more than 20 years in technology, I’ve met plenty of great women developers. And yet, men outnumber women in Tech by a large margin. Major tech companies are being challenged to increase diversity and inclusiveness. Learning to code can create big opportunities for people from all backgrounds—especially women. With the help of a female friend, I’ve compiled a list of some enticing opportunities for women eager to learn to code.
In-Person Coding Bootcamp Scholarships
Coding bootcamps are very popular these days. Chances are, there’s one near you. The idea of joining a group can be intimidating, but bootcamps are a great way to get started in the field. Here are a few that were created to help bring women into the fold.
Codeup is a startup I supported when I lived in San Antonio and worked out of Geekdom. They focus in bringing women into tech. They offer scholarships for women to take their 4-month, full stack development course in San Antonio.
Ada Developers Academy
In the Seattle area, the Ada Developers Academy local program was specifically developed for women. Ada Lovelace, whom the school is named after, is considered by many to be the first programmer, having written instructions for what’s believed to be the first computer program developed in the 1800s. Not only is the tuition free, but the school also offers paid internships.
Online bootcamps can be less intimidating and more approachable for those just getting started. Many allow you to work at your own pace and offer a flexible schedule.
Skillcrush has a female founder and first lead instructor, and an empowering message. You can try them out with a 10-day bootcamp, and then choose from a number of paid options if you’d like to continue on.
The Odin Project and Viking Code School
The Odin Project is an entirely free, online developer bootcamp which gets rave reviews in developer forums. Along with its paid counterpart, Viking Code School, the comprehensive set of courses cover Ruby and more.
FreeCodeCamp is another entirely free, online developer bootcamp. Their full stack developer certificate is 2,080 hours! (When you finish 1,200 hours, you can do a project for a non-profit.) It’s received multiple positive reviews in online forums from programmers going through or having finished one of their courses.
There are so many great resources available to learn coding. Here are just a few more resources that can help you get started:
- I personally love CodeAcademy‘s free, interactive tutorials. You can see how your code changes the results in real time, which really helps make the lessons stick.
- Code.org is famous for Hour of Code, aimed at elementary and high school students. Check out Beyond an Hour of Code for links to lots of great learning resources for learners of all ages, with many of them free—including Harvard University’s CS50x, an Ivy League, college-level course.
- TouchDevelop.com is a new favorite of mine from Microsoft Research, which I found on code.org. With free lessons (including video tutorials), they teach an interactive development environment designed for touch. Perfect for learning on your iPad on the couch!
- KhanAcademy’s free Computer Programming courses in the Computer Science section are also worth checking out.
- Lynda.com, part of LinkedIn, recently acquired by Microsoft, has Developer Training and Tutorials. Fees normally start at $20/month, but a free subscription is offered to King County Library card holders. It’s worth finding out if your library offers it, too.
- Code School is offered by Pluralsight, which is a paid service I’ve learned a lot from. A free account registration gives you access to 16 of their 60 courses.
- Udacity offers some free development classes and paid options, with mentoring for “Nanodegrees.”
- CourseReport has ratings by students (and this list of Full-Stack Web Development Bootcamps).
- Women in SharePoint organizes events within events, like conference lunches. The group has grown into a Women in Technology community on ITUnity.
- FrontEnd Focus offers a newsletter with new articles and tutorial links every week! (Check out the latest issue for an idea of what you’ll get.)
- … And for one last resource, TNW offers a great article written in May 2015 titled “10 best coding bootcamps for those on a budget, both online and in-person.”
Have fun on your coding journey!