Just getting started…

Originally posted by futureCoders on 2 February 2021. Source

During the last few months of 2020, we delivered two runs of our 5 week, 3 days per week, Be More Digital course (Introducing programming in Python), funded by the wonderful Talent Match programme. This course followed our established learning journey:

All programmes we deliver include an ideation event at the start, with a real app as the focus. This, more often than not, is a fast-paced hackathon, which introduces learners to Scrum and gives them a focus for their learning (the app). At the end they work together on a prototype app or feature, using the learning in the context of the app and experiencing the thrill of actually making something. Learning is highly collaborative and online.

H joined us for the first run and then returned to continue learning on the next run of the course. He was new to programming and just wanted to give it a go. After the second run he continued to learn and sometimes visited our Code Canteen

Yesterday, I received this email message from him:

“Just wanted to thank you both, as I’ve managed to get picked for a kick start that I start with on Monday! It’s literally perfect, 99% working from home, other 1% working in town. It’s to do with IT, partly coding and part cyber security, and honestly I’m just eternally grateful for both of you for helping me learn coding and teaching me how to be confident in IT. I can’t even lie, before the 2 courses last September, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I was offered a place on the Future Coders course and I’ll be honest, I considered quitting after the first day because the social aspect really bothered me. But, you both really helped me with that, and I even managed to make a good friend …. So, what I’m trying to say is thank you, before I started with any of this I was just drifting, hoping something would just happen for me, and you both have been very kind, generous with your time and sharing your knowledge to a point where I’ve literally just been hired for a role. I’m sorry for rambling on, but I’m just so, so grateful and you’ve both done more for me then you could ever imagine. I know this is just the beginning for me, but I won’t ever forget it was the 2 of you, and Lila too, opening these doors for me and guiding me to this. Thank you both very much”

Building skills and confidence is central to our mission. Seeing how a young person can moved from a position of not knowing that coding could be part of a career and not know what it is to create something with code, to a position of actively, and confidently seeking work that will help him to start using these skills.

Thank you to Andrew, who heads a youth team and presented a great app idea for us to work with, to Stacey and Maggy developers at @DigitalNotion and Deeson who inspired our learners through their talks about their career journeys, and to Dee and Lila who instructed and mentored and who helped learners to pair program and pair learn.

futureCoders runs courses in Python programming for beginners and improvers, Data Analysis in Python, HTML/CSS/Javascript.

We also develop software for charities and community groups, offering places on our teams for young people who want to learn more about working in software teams and who want to gain experience of working in the software industry. We may take longer to get to production but we don’t compromise on quality and the outcome is more than just a software product, some of our young people will be developing software long into the future or will make great employees with an understanding of coding and data and of what it is to be an effective member of a team.

If you would like to find out more please email karen@futurecoders.org.uk

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