Click here to preview the new Fast Company

Want to try out the new

If you’d like to return to the previous design, click the yellow button on the lower left corner.

Code Fellows Guarantees $100K Salaries For "Top Bootcamp Applicants"

But the definition of a "top" applicant is vague, and the hack school isn't listing a set of criteria for qualified candidates.

Hack schools aren't all they're cracked up to be. While some graduates of rigorous coding bootcamps successfully land software jobs, many students get left behind, far from the six-figure salaries they had hoped for.

Over the last few years, a number of hack schools have reined in students' expectations, but Code Fellows in Seattle announced Wednesday it is guaranteeing $100,000-plus salaries for its "top bootcamp applicants" in 2014. The school already touts an $82,000 average salary, with its top-grossing grad landing $155,000. But the term "top applicants" is vague, and Will Little, cofounder and CEO, says there's no set number of guarantees for each class, though he'd "love to see whole bootcamps filled with these top applicants."

"We also have purposely not listed a set criteria, as hiring software engineers has become more of an art and less of a science," Little tells Fast Company. "Our job is to identify talent that is eight intense weeks away from being a highly talented developer in a specific area of software."

The variables make that guarantee sound a lot less like, well, an actual guarantee. A representative did note that less experienced applicants are "eligible for a $60,000-plus guarantee as a default."

[Image: Flickr user hackNY]

Add New Comment


  • Code fellows is awesome. Its not just training. It is a fellowship and a netwoking hub that connects employers and aplicants around mutual goals. They find out what their company partners want and they provide the intense training and direction for the applicant to aquire it. I am currently in the Javascript bootcamp and don't need a garantee. I know they are helping me reach greatest potential and are truly comitted to my success. However, there is no majic wand so for something like this to work a student must be fully engaged in the process. Those looking to trade a tuition fee for a high paying job without putting in maximum effort should save there money.

  • Justin Wu Review - I do not recommend the evening Rails session at all.

    I believe Codefellows runs a great program -- I've attended the RoR evening classes. However the $2500 price tag and the course itself is very questionable for the evening session.

    I felt like I've learned a lot from attending the course program however after the course was done I began looking at self teaching resources and found that sites such as One Month covered similar topics than what I found during the evening class and it was only $100.

    Now its just one level 5-day workshop and this 'evening' class workshop. The evening class doesn't guarantee you a job nor does it help you get the necessary skillsets needed to do much except launch some basic apps. Its like part time rails learning I guess. But theres no benefit especially

    If I could do it again, I just felt that I should have skipped the evening sessions out and put my $2500 into that instead of the evening class

  • slowcompany

    Why is Alice so negative about code schools? It seems like there's absolutely no numbers to support saying that "Many" get left behind while "some" get jobs.

    Couldn't we just as easily say that "MANY!" get jobs, while "some" get left behind... It seems like it's been phrased in a disparaging way without any real basis...

  • Jdawg

    Lighthouse Labs in Vancouver actually seems to guarantee paid co-ops for their students. That seems a lot more honest and reasonable in my eyes.

  • theoptips

    Guarantee is really a tough word. As Alice mentioned in a previous article, most bootcamps used to guarantee tuition reimbursement. Again, taken with a grain of salt.

  • DakotaNM57

    Tuition reimbursement is what Code Fellows offers.
    From the Code Fellows site:

    "We support you every step of the way. Our mentors offer interview coaching, connect you with employers and recruiters, help you build your own online presence, and ensure your resume is rock-solid.

    All of this, combined with the proven success of our students, allows us to guarantee bootcamp graduates a high-paying job offer or we'll refund their tuition.

    The default guarantee level is $60k+/yr, and for top applicants the guarantee level is $100k+/yr.

    "Top" applicants are, for example, experienced software developers seeking to switch stacks (e.g. a Python dev diving into iOS, a Rails dev diving into full-stack JavaScript, etc...)".