For many people the word apprenticeship makes you think of plumbers or electricians. It may surprise you to learn that there are many people, myself included, who think apprenticeship and software development go hand and hand.
A quick search in any search engine will give you a list of companies, both big and small, who are looking for apprentices. Here are two examples, but there are many more: If you are in Atlanta my favorite shop for apprenticeship is Greater Sum. If you are in Los Angeles, IBM is one of 24 companies looking for apprentices who have some experience in the industry but who have not written code in 24 months or more. Now let’s talk pros and cons:
- No computer science degree needed.
- No Bootcamp needed.
- Not mainstream so less competition
- In most cases, apprenticeship is tied to a job, so there is no job search once the program is complete.
- In most cases, the apprenticeship period is either unpaid or low pay.
- It can be challenging to find a program if you are not in a big city.
- It’s a full-time job, it may not be as intense as a coding camp, but for a single parent it does present obstacles (like paying for childcare without much income)
Apprenticeship is not for everyone, but it is excellent for anyone looking to re-enter the market after a break. It is also good for anyone who is willing to put in some elbow grease to enter the market without paying for a code camp.
If Option 1 and Option 2 are not your cup of tea, there are other options. I will list some of them in my next article.