Congrats! You’ve made the amazing decision to kickstart your career in tech and are getting ready to head into your first week at Ironhack. You’re probably feeling a lot of feelings: excitement, nervousness, and anticipation. But don’t worry: we’re here to help you throughout your tech journey and you’ll have your teacher, fellow Ironhackers, and teaching assistants by your side throughout the entire process.
Whether you choose the 9-week full time bootcamp or the 24 week part time bootcamp, you will graduate Ironhack’s bootcamp ready to take on the tech world. But what happens before graduation day? How does this random mix of professionals with diverse backgrounds and experiences come together to help each other and learn? It actually begins before day 1.
Pre-work at Ironhack
That’s right - before you even step foot on campus (or log in, if you’re doing a remote bootcamp), you’ll have pre-work to prepare you for the bootcamp. This may seem intimidating (you didn’t sign up for more work!), we have good reason: Ironhackers come from practically every background and sector and the pre-work helps introduce you to the content, cover the foundations of your particular bootcamp, and make sure everyone has a similar knowledge level heading into week 1. Still confused? We got you covered.
I thought the work started on day 1 of the bootcamp. How much time will the pre-work take?
For our Web Development, Data Analytics, and UX/UI Design Bootcamps, you’ll have access to the pre-work content from the moment you enroll; our Cybersecurity Bootcamp pre-work will be accessible 20 days before the course begins. It can be completed at your leisure, but needs to be done at least one week before the bootcamp begins so that your teacher can correct it.
I’ve never studied (insert bootcamp name here) before! How am I supposed to complete pre-work?
That’s exactly what the pre-work is for! We want you to familiarize yourself with some basic concepts before the bootcamp begins so that you can dive right into the nitty gritty on day 1. And if you have questions, you’ll have access to your class’ Slack channel, where you can check in with your future classmates, teachers, and even Ironhack alumni.
Hmm..alright. And what is the pre-work like?
There are two parts to our pre-work, theoretical and practical, just like the bootcamp itself. Take your time and dedicate the recommended amount of time to the pre-work so that you’re fully prepared for the course.
Your First Week at Ironhack
The best part about Ironhack’s bootcamps is that you dive right into the courses’ details from the first day; thanks to the time you dedicated to your pre-work, you’ll have all the background and foundational knowledge that’s necessary to dive a little deeper. We spoke to some UX/UI Design bootcamp students after their first week to learn about their experiences:
“The first week was about user research, understanding your customer, your users.” - Mohamed
“It’s a strange mix because it’s very hard and it’s a lot of work. But then at the end, you feel very, very good because you can do it.” - Issac
When asked about her teachers, Marta told us they are:
“Very open minded and willing to listen to new ideas and whenever they see that you are a little bit lost about finding—I don’t know, for example, the right questions, they are always there to give you a helping hand.”
After just one week in their UX/UI Design bootcamp, Mohamed, Issac, and Marta are already thinking about their final projects and what they’ll achieve after graduation. But they have quite the challenge in front of them and we recommend the following tips:
Be prepared for a whirlwind experience
Whether you have 9 or 24 weeks, you’ll be facing lots of challenges during your course and it will fly by. Completing your course pre-work is absolutely essential to your success; due to the short length of the course, your teachers won’t spend much time on the basics covered in the pre-work and if you skip it, it will be nearly impossible to catch up.
Be ready for the good and bad days
We’re committed to providing you with the best possible experience during your bootcamp, but there will be hard days. Keeping a positive attitude and asking for help when you need it will help you overcome challenges and learn as much as you can. And when you’re feeling super smart and talented, run with it! Value those euphoric moments as much as you can.
Plan your weeks properly
During your first week, you’ll get a feel for what your days will look like during the bootcamp and this can help you plan properly. If you’re coming home exhausted every night, you may need to rethink other commitments for the duration of your course. Planning regular tasks like grocery shopping and workouts for weekends (for full-time courses) or the days without classes (for part-time courses) can help you focus primarily on the course.
The first week is also a good time to realize how much sleep and extra work you’ll need outside of class. If you can barely get out of bed every morning, make an effort to go to bed earlier and if you’re just thinking about dinner for the last few hours of your afternoon, pack a snack to help you focus during the entire day.
And last but not least: enjoy the adventure!
Not everyone has the chance to change careers or gain a new skill but you do. Think about this: when else are you going to have experienced teachers and TAs to help you through each step, an entire class on your same journey, and great career assistance to help you land that dream job?
If the idea of bootcamps was intimidating to you, we hope this helps. Check out our available courses and choose the right one for you. We can’t wait to watch you succeed!