GROWING FOOTPRINT: Expect fierce scrutiny for the coding bootcamp industry, especially now that some programs may be eligible for federal aid. Many providers make bold, seductive claims, promising “99% job placement” and big salary bumps after graduation.
Are they too good to be true? In a new study by Course Report, a directory for the boot camp industry, 89 percent of bootcamp students reported finding a new full-time job within four months of graduation, and enjoying an average salary of $64,255—an increase of $18,000, or 38 percent—over their pre-bootcamp average salary of $46,638.
That sounds promising. But a similar study by Course Report published last year found that bootcamp graduates reported earning upwards of $75,000. (To be fair, they also said they were earning $52,809 before starting the program.)
Is, perhaps, the influx of bootcamp graduates driving salaries down? Or are some bootcamps not graduating students with the right skills that employers are willing to pay premium dollars for?
This year’s data, collected from a survey of 665 graduates from 44 bootcamps, offers a glimpse into a business that is increasingly popular among young, educated adults. The typical student is 31 years old, with over 7 years of work experience and at least a Bachelor’s degree. Women make up only 36 percent of students but report a higher salary boost after graduation (an average of $25,283 increase, versus $14,839 for men).
For prospective students, the report also offers handy tips in choosing a program. Python is the most lucrative language, with graduates who learned that skill reporting an average post-graduation salary of $80,369. (But, strangely, graduates who learned PHP reported an average salary decrease of $2,228). Those who learned C# were most likely to land a developer job after graduation.