007: Lessons from Code Academy with George Mandis

What you'll learn

  • The challenges self-taught web developers can face when teaching new coders
  • Considerations when building a curriculum for new web developers
  • Why being introduced to a lot of information at once can be an effective way to learn
  • Even professional devs experience Imposter Syndrome
  • The importance of building connections and relationships with other web developers

Key moments

  • 0:32  How I met George in 2015
  • 1:21  George talks about how he got into computing and web development—this may resonate with a lot of new students!
  • 7:27  What does George consider to be his greatest strength?
  • 8:21  Why having me in his class was a “boon” 🙂
  • 8:55  George and Nicole talk about Code Academy, a 10-week mini-bootcamp for newbies in Portland, Oregon that George teaches
  • 9:36  How George became a Code Academy instructor—and why you may want to reconsider deleting that next opportunity you get in your email!
  • 11:38  George on whether or not he thought Code Academy was a success overall
  • 13:28  Most students didn’t finish anywhere near the entire syllabus in 10 weeks. Nicole thinks it’s because of the diverse technical background and lack of a “barrier to entry” to the course. Hear what Georgeactually thinks was the reason.
  • 14:51  What George is doing differently for the second Code Academy session (and his new approach that is working great with this session)
  • 18:37  George talks about what he’s learned from the entire experience of teaching Code Academy, and the dangers of overcomplicating and offering too many learning options
  • 22:48  George talks about Imposter Syndrome
  • 25:14  Why it’s important to jump on opportunities as they arise
  • 25:56  Hear why teaching others helps boost your confidence
  • 26:46  Nicole on why developer connections are so damn powerful
  • 28:06  George talks about the fast-paced nature of the web development industry, and why learning on the job needs to be prioritized
  • 30:26  George highlights out the madness of frameworks from the perspective of a new developer
  • 35:16  International conferences at which George will be speaking

In this episode, Nicole talks to her first in-person coding instructor and good mentor friend, George Mandis of Snaptortoise Development. She met George, a Portland, Oregon-based web developer, while attending Code Academy at Mount Hood Community College. In fact, this was Nicole’s first classroom-based web development bootcamp when she started learning to code. However, Nicole was already pretty advanced for the class, and he ended up being a great mentor to her!

While talking to George, I reminisce on the time I began learning to code. He has wonderful intuitive and experience-based insight on the web development industry, which is something newbie coders by and large lack.

In Portland? Learn more about Code Academy

Code Academy at Mount Hood Community College

George’s plugs

CodeAnywhere
Cross-platform IDE for web developers

George’s Upcoming Conferences

HolyJS – St. Petersburg, Russia
OdessaJS – Ukraine (English translation)
FullStack – London
NEJS – Omaha, NE

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I’d love to hear from you and chat about your experiences and mentors as a self-taught web development student!

You can reach out to me:

On Twitter as @lavie_encode

On the La Vie en Code Facebook page

Or, via my Contact page

What you'll learn

  • The challenges self-taught web developers can face when teaching new coders
  • Considerations when building a curriculum for new web developers
  • Why being introduced to a lot of information at once can be an effective way to learn
  • Even professional devs experience Imposter Syndrome
  • The importance of building connections and relationships with other web developers

Key moments

  • 0:32  How I met George in 2015
  • 1:21  George talks about how he got into computing and web development—this may resonate with a lot of new students!
  • 7:27  What does George consider to be his greatest strength?
  • 8:21  Why having me in his class was a “boon” 🙂
  • 8:55  George and Nicole talk about Code Academy, a 10-week mini-bootcamp for newbies in Portland, Oregon that George teaches
  • 9:36  How George became a Code Academy instructor—and why you may want to reconsider deleting that next opportunity you get in your email!
  • 11:38  George on whether or not he thought Code Academy was a success overall
  • 13:28  Most students didn’t finish anywhere near the entire syllabus in 10 weeks. Nicole thinks it’s because of the diverse technical background and lack of a “barrier to entry” to the course. Hear what Georgeactually thinks was the reason.
  • 14:51  What George is doing differently for the second Code Academy session (and his new approach that is working great with this session)
  • 18:37  George talks about what he’s learned from the entire experience of teaching Code Academy, and the dangers of overcomplicating and offering too many learning options
  • 22:48  George talks about Imposter Syndrome
  • 25:14  Why it’s important to jump on opportunities as they arise
  • 25:56  Hear why teaching others helps boost your confidence
  • 26:46  Nicole on why developer connections are so damn powerful
  • 28:06  George talks about the fast-paced nature of the web development industry, and why learning on the job needs to be prioritized
  • 30:26  George highlights out the madness of frameworks from the perspective of a new developer
  • 35:16  International conferences at which George will be speaking

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