Tech Talent Tuesdays Foster ‘Soft Skills’ in IT Talent →

People aspiring to launch their career in the information technology (IT) sector generally focus on maximizing their technical skills and obtaining certifications. While these are crucial, IT newcomers are often unaware of the importance of “soft skills” – the ones that will help get them hired in their first IT job – so learning them from seasoned mentors in the San Antonio tech ecosystem would provide a valuable resource.

Read the full article in the Rivard Report.

Why I chose The Iron Yard: Mariah’s story

Mariah is finishing up week eight of her journey with our Front-End Engineering with JavaScript and MVC Frameworks course in San Antonio. With just four weeks to go, she recently reflected about her journey so far on her blog, CreativiTree.

We loved her perspective on why she chose to learn to code, how she chose the school that was the best fit for her, and how she’s feeling now that she’s almost to the finish line. So, we asked her if we could share her thoughts here, and she gladly obliged. Read on for Mariah’s journey, in her own words.  Read More

Team member spotlight: Courtney Cunningham, San Antonio Campus Director

Courtney remembers tinkering with code and creating websites as far back as middle school. “I was always making dorky websites for science class or for my artwork,” she said. “So it made sense that in all of my jobs through college and graduate school, I was usually the one who knew how to ‘fix’ site stuff.”

As the Campus Director for our new San Antonio campus location, Courtney draws upon her experience and educational background to help adults who want to pursue new careers in software development. Before moving to San Antonio and joining The Iron Yard this past fall, she worked as an academic librarian at Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania. “I was the emerging technologies librarian, so I was doing a lot of instructional technology and physical technology (like building a makerspace),” she said. “I did a lot of research and learning about mobile website design and responsive design because they were interested in developing an app. I got really into it, and that ended up being a lot of my job. I loved it.”
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We’re now bigger in Texas! Now enrolling for coding courses in Dallas and San Antonio.

According to recently released Census Bureau data, three of the top five fastest growing cities in the U.S. are in Texas, largely thanks to the Lone Star State’s booming tech industry. We’ve worked with tons of students through our Austin and Houston campus locations, and talk every day with Texas employers who tell us they need more tech talent. Today, we’re thrilled to announce that we’re doubling our footprint in the Lone Star state with the launch of two new locations: Dallas and San Antonio.

Enrollment is open now for all Texans interested in learning to code. Here’s a quick snapshot of our Texas schedule:

  • Austin: Courses in Front-End Engineering, Back-End Engineering with Ruby on Rails and User Interface Design will begin Feb. 29.
  • Dallas: Courses in both Front-End Engineering and Back-End Engineering will begin March 21.
  • Houston: Courses are running now for both Front-End Engineering and Back-End Engineering; Mobile Engineering will begin March 28.
  • San Antonio: Courses in both Front-End Engineering and Back-End Engineering will begin March 21.

We’ll be hosting Open Houses, Crash Courses, Kids Classes and more at each of our Texas campus locations soon – Be sure you check for the latest events at your favorite Iron Yard location! In the meantime, we can’t thank our Texas friends and partners enough for the warm welcome so far, and we can’t wait to work with more Texas students soon.

Helping kids learn programming for Hour of Code

One of the most rewarding parts of what we do at The Iron Yard is hosting kids coding classes. Our instructors volunteer their time on a regular basis to make sure kids in every community where we operate have a chance to be exposed to what it’s like to code. Plus, our kids coding classes usually feature fun topics like how to build games or recreate popular characters characters.

Teaching kids is something we’ve done since we launched, and it’s remained a big part of our DNA. Our CEO Peter Barth put it this way:

We believe in investing in the local tech economy for the long run, and that means impacting the next generation. Hosting these events is a great way to help kids take their first step down a path that could unlock a passion for technology.

We’re so passionate about exposing kids to technology and coding that we are hosting free kids coding events at every one of our locations during the week of Dec. 7-13 for the global “Hour of Code” effort created by The goal of the effort is to introduce students to computer science – even one hour of learning to code might be the start of something great! Last year, every Apple Store in the world hosted an Hour of Code and even President Obama wrote his first line of code as part of the campaign. Pretty cool. Read More