I was previously involved in data science projects & worked with Python and SQL and had close to 2 years of coding experience in Python. I also mostly completed an Udemy web development bootcamp prior.
As of June 2021, I graduated from Rocket Academy's 6-month full-time bootcamp, which was fruitful & enjoyable. Thereafter, I was a teaching assistant for their 6-weeks Basics course from July to August while applying for jobs.
And as of August 2021, I managed to receive a handful offers and settled down in a software engineer role at Gotrade, a YC Fintech company.
Researching SWE bootcamps
My research for a choice bootcamp was primarily in the US, namely: Lambda School, Fullstack Academy, & Hack Reactor. Reason being, I have had acquaintances who did so and doing well in engineering roles. I also reached out to alumni on Reddit & most of them had good to say for the 3 mentioned above. In short I did not choose them because of time difference & cost.
How did I find out about Rocket Academy in 2020? Very interestingly it was through a sponsorship logo they had on a Shopee Code league. Then, I remembered googling them up, and it resurfaced later down the road.
Prior to contacting Rocket Academy, I reached out to a Rocket alumni who graciously shared on his own bootcamp research, and he himself was certain Rocket would be a good place for growth.
What really helped me solidify my decision was the open curriculum they had which signalled a proactive learning style - focused on the student's desire to learn (where I really believe true growth comes from). I contacted Kai soon after and the rest was history.
General Perception of My Instructors
From the start, Kai has been meticulous in selection of incoming students yet does it in down-to-earth in manner which just by observing one can learn so much. His teaching of complex topics was always clear and I really like that he cares about the quality of projects & pushes students to be accountable on their progress. Kai was pivotal in me getting good interviews as well & keeping on the journey.
My main instructor throughout both Basics & Bootcamp, Akira has a knack for being able to sift out the real question behind my questions. Akira is highly gifted in educating. Through his teaching, he has taught me how to learn & even teach myself better. He demonstrated great passion & patience in ensuring students pick up the material well, & has genuine interest for them to grasp the material.
Rocket Academy (1-month Basics)
Total of 4 hours a week in-class, where it would be further divided up into 30 minutes of lessons, 60 minutes of pair programming and recaps. It was a solid foundation for us to build on moving into the 6-month full-time bootcamp.
This was also a good time to see if the learning style suited me, and whether I wanted commit.
Rocket Academy (6-month Bootcamp)
A total of 5-6 projects were done. Ready to show case to potential employers and enough to be proud of accomplishing. There was also a group project that helped made us very familiar with Git & Github. Amazingly helpful when on the job.
Support as usual was great. Both from the instructors and community. All this while also having check-ins on our data structures & algorithm familiarity.
Rocket Academy (2-month Post-Bootcamp)
I was surprised at the level of support I received from both Kai & Akira. They are genuinely interested in the welfare of their students. Not just for me, I saw this displayed in their approach to each student under their care.
I have been to other bootcamps before and although post-bootcamp support was sincere it was only a one-time affair. However, at Rocket Academy there were constant check-ins, referrals, advice and encouragement.
On top of that, both of them gave me lots of their personal takes on interviews, work and general life. So it was really more than a 6-month thing. And they were prepared to go all the way.
I was fortunate to be in Batch 2, because Batch 1 had all found jobs. An alumni Jit Corn, whom I reached out to was extremely helpful as well. And it makes a world of difference to have someone already gone through that journey and giving good advice on hindsight.
With the current support of our Singapore government to become more tech savvy, it is a great time for non-CS or non-engineering degree people having strong interest in building a career in tech to join bootcamps.
I highly commend what Rocket Academy is offering - strong curriculum, dedicated & personal instructors, like-minded & friendly community, and strong post-bootcamp job-search support.