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Not Sure College Is Right For You? A Tech Bootcamp Might Be.

General Assembly
July 8, 2024

Think you need a college degree to succeed in tech? Think again.

Imagine learning the hottest tech skills and being career-ready in just a few months, without the years and cost of a traditional college degree. Pretty cool, right?

This guide will show you why pursuing a tech career is worth it, what tech bootcamps are all about, and why they’re the best path into the industry. 

We’ll also highlight why General Assembly’s tech bootcamps, highlighted on networks like CollegeVine, stand out as a top choice for launching your tech career. 

Why Explore Careers in Tech?

Hungry for work that’s fast-paced, rewarding, and full of opportunity? 

You’ll find it in tech — not only the classic “Big Five Tech” like Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Meta — but across every industry from retail and finance to entertainment and manufacturing. Truth is, every business is a tech business. And every business needs software engineers, UX designers, data analysts, and data scientists to innovate, problem-solve, and serve their customers better. 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:

  • Employment in computer and IT occupations is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations from 2022 to 2032.
  • Annually, 377,500 job openings are projected to accommodate growth and retirements.
  • The median annual wage for tech careers is $104,420 — more than double the median annual wage for all occupations ($48,060).

How To Break Into Tech

Eager to get started right away, without loads of debt?

If you’re a high school junior or senior — or a parent or caregiver looking out for your child’s future — it’s time to think beyond the traditional college route. Tech bootcamps are transforming how we prepare for careers, offering a fresh, dynamic college alternative program that can get you into the tech world quickly and for a small fraction of the cost of traditional college tuition.

In 2024, the average cost of in-state tuition at a public college reached $9,750 per year. If you’re living on campus, you can expect to spend $27,146 for one academic year. When you factor in student loan interest and loss of income, a bachelor’s degree in computer science could easily end up costing you $500,000. Private tuition would likely cost you double.

Without scholarships, grants, and family assistance, the traditional college path becomes unfeasible for many students. These young adults, eager to transition to independence and enter the workforce, face the challenge of needing to save for essential expenses like housing, food, transportation, and healthcare for the first time.

Cost is one of many reasons tech bootcamps have sprouted up as a path to get more students into tech. Tech bootcamps cost roughly as much as one semester of college tuition — and that’s it. And hundreds of bootcamp graduates have gone for a free ride through employer-sponsored cohorts, scholarships, grants, and GI bills, too. 

What Are Tech Bootcamps? 

Tech bootcamps are breaking down barriers and filling talent shortage gaps.

Online tech bootcamps have been around since 2011, but they’ve picked up steam over the last five years as more and more major employers drop degree requirements in search of the best and brightest talent. In short, employers are after skills, not degrees. 

A tech bootcamp is an intensive, short-term training program designed to equip individuals with practical skills and knowledge needed for specific roles in the technology industry. These programs typically focus on hands-on, project-based learning, taught by instructors currently working in the field. 

A tech bootcamp can serve as: 

  • A college alternative program for a recent high school graduate
  • A platform for an entry or mid-level tech employee to upskill or refresh their abilities
  • The ideal starting point for a career changer first venturing into the tech industry

With a fast-paced, accelerated learning schedule, participants swiftly gain proficiency in the sought-after tech skills that will allow them to make an impact on day one in a new tech role.

What’s the Best Tech Bootcamp?

General Assembly Tech Bootcamps Offer a Proven College Alternative Program

Founded in 2011, General Assembly is one of the first tech bootcamps out there, with award-winning tech bootcamps in four different disciplines:  

  • Software Engineering: Learn to build the applications of tomorrow through coding languages like Python and JavaScript, agile and scrum project management methodologies, testing and debugging techniques, version control systems, and cloud computing platforms. These skills pave the way for exciting career paths as a Full-Stack Developer, Front-End Developer, Solutions Engineer, UX/UI Developer, Implementation Engineer, or JavaScript Developer.
  • Data Analytics: Gain skills that turn data into stories, from harnessing the power of data analysis and statistical modeling to deploying cutting-edge machine learning algorithms and crafting compelling data visualizations. With expertise in decision trees, natural language processing, neural networks, and Python programming, you’ll be primed for roles such as Cyber Security Analyst, Business Development Analyst, Risk & Compliance Analyst, Procurement Analyst, Fraud Data Analyst, Performance Marketer, or Quantitative Analyst.
  • UX Design: Change how the world engages with digital. Acquire the essential skills of UX design, from crafting intuitive wireframes and prototypes to conducting insightful user research and usability testing. With expertise in visual design, user interface design, and UX writing, you’ll be well-prepared for a range of rewarding roles, including Product Manager, UX/UI Designer, Product Designer, Associate Designer, UX Architect, Interactive Designer, or UX Writer.
  • Data Science: Though not a beginner-level course, graduates of the Data Analysis program or mid-level professionals can enroll in the Data Science Bootcamp to elevate their careers with the essential skills of data science, from conducting in-depth data analysis and crafting sophisticated statistical models to leveraging powerful machine learning algorithms and creating impactful data visualizations. By building upon expertise in decision trees, natural language processing, neural networks, and Python, you’ll be equipped for diverse roles such as Data Scientist, Machine Learning Scientist, Business Analyst, Data Mining Engineer, Data Modeler, Database Specialist, Business Technology Analyst, Data Analyst, or Data Engineer.

On top of leading tech bootcamps, GA also offers a variety of short courses, as well as workshops, free tech skill classes, and other career development events

And here’s why GA continues to lead the market as a top-voted, award-winning bootcamp 15 years later:

  • Expert-Led Instruction: Learn from live online sessions with industry experts who bring real-world experience and cutting-edge knowledge to the classroom, ensuring that you receive top-tier education that is relevant and up-to-date.
  • Comprehensive Curriculum: Dive deep into a comprehensive curriculum that covers the latest tech trends and in-demand skills, equipping you with the tools and knowledge needed to excel in the tech industry. 
  • Networking: Connect with a diverse community of peers, instructors, and industry professionals through General Assembly’s robust network of 100,000+ grads and a diverse network of employers, opening doors to valuable connections, mentors, and job opportunities.
  • Career Prep: Receive exclusive mentoring and personalized career support, including resume reviews, mock interviews, and job placement assistance, so you’re well-prepared to launch your tech career within the first 180 days of graduation.
  • Results: Over 90% of GA grads land a role in tech within six months of finishing a bootcamp, solidifying General Assembly’s reputation as a launchpad for tech careers. The reviews say it all — check out what our grads have to say about their transformative experiences at General Assembly on Course Report.

Curious To Learn More?

Tech bootcamps aren’t for everyone. Try our step-by-step approach to gauge your interest and enthusiasm for online tech education:

  • STEP 1: Begin your journey by dipping your toes in with a free tech skill class or info session, where you can explore fundamental concepts and program offerings at no cost. 
  • STEP 2: Expand your knowledge further by trying a workshop, where hands-on learning experiences await. 
  • STEP 3: Next, deepen your skills with a short course tailored to your interests and goals. 
  • STEP 4: Finally, when you’re ready to fully immerse yourself in tech education, enroll in a comprehensive bootcamp to unlock endless career opportunities.

Join General Assembly Bootcamps Through CollegeVine

CollegeVine, known for its expertise in college admissions guidance, now extends its support to aspiring tech professionals by partnering with General Assembly. 

Through this collaboration, students gain access to General Assembly’s renowned tech bootcamps, while benefiting from CollegeVine’s personalized mentorship and support network. 

If you’re a high school junior or senior exploring college alternative program options, connecting with General Assembly through CollegeVine gives you a robust path packed with guidance, resources, and opportunities needed to become part of the exciting high-tech future. All without spending four (or more) years in college.


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