Written by Jocelyn Caster on 12th October 2016, 6:18 PM
Lots of coding bootcamps all around the country make grand claims when it comes to job placements, promising their graduates jobs in 90 days or less, touting 99% job placement rates, or assuring readers of astronomical salaries for a first job out of their program.
With such outlandish claims, you would think there would be detailed descriptions as to the steps they’re taking to get students there. Or proof of their high placement rates.
Alas, I have found nothing of the sort.
Here at Wyncode, we take our placement services very, very seriously. Not only did we just get our placement outcomes independently verified (no funny business allowed), but we additionally just added a new, full-time team member, Miguel Cruz, to take our hiring partnerships to the next level.
Although being Director of Hiring Partnerships means that he is constantly busy networking on our students’ behalf or planning next week’s Wynwork (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10am), I managed to snag him away for a quick interview to find out the state of our placement services, and what he plans to do in the new role.
J: What is your background? What made you interested in this line of work?
M: I have an engineering background in aerospace and have also worked with nonprofits. I’ve always had a huge interest in technology and how it can improve our day-to-day lives, which got me interested in aerospace and engineering. At the same time, my nonprofit background attests to my deep desire to help people. This role allows me to help people in the technology sector. Applying and taking the job once offered was a no-brainer!
J: The team is thrilled to have you aboard. How has your introduction to Wyncode been?
M: The Wyncode staff has welcomed me with open arms. I’ve been able to hit the ground running thanks to everyone’s support. It has been especially awesome to get to know Wyncoders from past cohorts and hear their success stories.
J: What has been your main focus during your first few weeks on the job, and what do you look forward to accomplishing in the future?
M: I’ve been focusing first and foremost on getting to know Wyncoders. We’re big believers in constantly iterating in order to improve our services. There is no way to do that without listening to what Wyncoders have to say. Their feedback means the world to us. My second focus has been figuring out how to take our data-driven decision-making processes, from a hiring perspective to the next level. It is important that we make our decisions based on facts and not feelings, and so I’m reviewing what our hiring partners are looking for and working with our tech team to make sure our curriculum covers certain topics. It’s our responsibility to ensure Wyncoders are put in a position where they are able to succeed once they start searching for new roles.
J: What has it been like working with Shaun, our current hiring coordinator? What have you guys done together?
M: Shaun and I have been working very closely together, and he’s really shown me the ropes getting started. We have been strategically working on the technical side of trying to better understand what companies need, and how Wyncoders can add value to those with those deficits in mind. Like all industries, in the technology industry certain skills and aptitudes are favored and then go out of style, and companies start asking for new and different skills every day. Our job is to meet these companies where they’re at, and prepare our students for the job market of today and tomorrow, not load them with useless information nobody is hiring for.
J: What do you like about the tech scene in south Florida? Why do you recommend it as a place to start your career in software development?
M: To me, Miami is somewhere I like to call a “little big town.” We are a global community, however, everyone seems to know everyone. The ability to connect with people is easier here than in many other places around the country.
During the last few years especially, South Florida has seen a much more blossoming tech scene. You see on one end lots of new tech startups coming around, making it the perfect place to start your company or find enthused partners, as several Wyncoders have. On the other end, you see larger companies moving down here with the goal of being more innovative in how they approach technology. For example take Watsco, who launched their more cutting-edge Watsco Ventures to spearhead more innovative projects. Bigger companies are looking more at current trends in technology and are looking to innovate internally by using agile techniques. South Florida is the perfect intersection of all these budding technology trends.
J: How important is networking when choosing a coding bootcamp? What do you think is special about Wyncode’s network?
M: While Wyncode’s curriculum is cutting-edge & top-notch, going to a bootcamp with a strong network is extremely important if you are looking for employment after you graduate.
One of our biggest strengths as a bootcamp is our hiring partner network. Not only have we been successful in the past at getting students hired, but we really tap our students into the local tech ecosystem. We introduce them to community leaders, get them on important organizations and companies’ radar, and suggest all the right events for students to attend in order to build and strengthen their personal networks.
J: Finishing up, if there was only one piece of advice you would give to Wyncoders (or anyone seeking a job), what would that be?
M: Don’t stop the hustle. When it comes to the career side, Wyncode provides the information and tools to help you succeed. We are here to be a support system and make introductions, but you have to be the one to take it a step further and close the deal.