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University of Wisconsin Adds Tech Bootcamp as Continuing Ed

closeup of coding on laptop

A Wisconsin university has signed on with an online bootcamp to provide crash courses in in-demand tech skills to address the state's job training needs. The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's (UWM) School of Continuing Education is working with coding school Thinkful on the initiative.

The Thinkful program delivered through the university promises to convert beginners to "job-ready" in six months. Topics will cover web development fundamentals, web apps, server-side programming with Node.js, React development, and data structures and algorithms. It costs $10,500.

The average yearly salary increase for students who complete the program is just over $19,000, according to the company. Thinkful said 84 percent of its students get hired within six months. It offers a job guarantee: Those who aren't offered a qualifying position within six months of graduation are eligible for a 100 percent tuition refund. The service also includes six months of career coaching.

A unique aspect of the bootcamp's approach is the use of mentoring. Each week, students meet via Slack or e-mail with an "industry veteran" for "pair programming," where they write and review their software code and talk about course topics and projects in progress.

"This partnership is well suited with the school's goal of meeting regional workforce needs," said Nancy Nelson, provost's deputy for continuing education at UWM, in a statement. "This course provides participants with the skills necessary for high-growth careers in web development while also meeting the rapidly changing technology needs of industry."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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