With the recent first graduating class of Depot/U, we caught up with one of the organizers, Kathleen Israel of Platypi, to learn more about the successes of this group and where they are now.
When we went live with the Depot/U application last May, we didn’t really know what to expect. In a very short period of time we had about 100 applications to sort through for our first class, which started in September. We ended up with a very diverse group of fifteen students for the inaugural class. We had Graphic Designers, Theatre Minors, students right out of college who didn’t know what to do with their major, people looking for a career change, and a couple of students who attended to enhance their skills for their current jobs. The class ran the full 10-weeks with our CEO Matt Landers giving daily lectures and David Stapleton, one of our developers, working as a TA. It was more successful than we could have ever imagined.
Our goal at the completion of the first Depot/U class was to have everyone placed in jobs within the first six months. Knowing that several of our students quit jobs for the sake of being able to attend Depot/U full-time, we wanted to make it our mission not only to teach them to become Front-End Engineers, but to make sure they got jobs after graduating. We are now about one month out from graduation and are well on our way to reaching that goal.
Three of our students accepted jobs prior to graduation. One student took a job with Everis Group and another with BBVA Compass. The third student (who moved from Philadelphia to Birmingham for the duration of the course) accepted a job with Platypi and will be moving back to Birmingham fulltime next week. Two of our students took time off from their jobs to attend Depot/U and returned after graduating. Within the first few days after graduation we had 1/3 of the class in jobs – which was very exciting for us.
Since then, six of our students accepted a 4-week internship with BBVA Compass, where they split into two groups and were told to build an application that was “disruptive” to the banking industry. They were given no parameters – just use what they learned from attending Depot/U and build the app/website. Both groups were very successful in completing this project!
We still have a handful of students that are interviewing with companies in Birmingham, some at Innovation Depot, and we continue to work with them to make sure they are successful. The first Depot/U class was definitely a learning curve for everyone, but we couldn’t be more proud of its success and excited for what’s to come for the next class in February!
To find out more about attending Depot/U or to learn more about the graduates, contact Kathleen at firstname.lastname@example.org
View more blog posts by visiting TechBirmingham's full blog.