Wednesday, 07 February 2018 04:20

Le Wagon coding school opens in Australia to teach entrepreneurs and creative pros

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Promising "ambitious plans to level up Aussie entrepreneurs by providing training and tech skills not available at traditional universities", Le Wagon's stunning success shows it will definitely achieve its Australian and global aims.

Le Wagon, listed as the "the world's top-rated coding school", is making its way to Sydney and Melbourne, with its first local nine-week boot camps scheduled for early 2018.

If you haven't heard of Le Wagon before, the company reminds us that it was founded in Paris in 2013 by brothers Romain and Boris Paillard, and offers a "nine-week immersive coding bootcamp for creative people".

"The intensive full-stack programme is designed to give participants skills to launch and work on any digital product. Students learn the best practices in both back-end and front-end coding, database modelling, UI design and product launch methodology.

"Within the programme, there are also times scheduled for reflection and yoga to ensure students maintain perspective and some head space.

"One objective is to acquire a Web developer's problem solving mindset to become more creative using the newly developed technical skills. By the end of the nine-week bootcamp, students will be able to launch their own web product, create a startup, become a freelancer or find a job as a software developer, a growth hacker or as a product manager."

Le Wagon "currently operates in 27 cities around the world teaching entrepreneurs and creative professionals technical skills and product development via an intensive and selective nine-week programme".

The company notes that "while many coding schools simply focus on students being able to secure a job as a developer at the end of the course", its "ethos focuses instead purely on creating great products. After all, if a student can build a quality product, they can do anything - from joining Stripe as junior programmer, to building an app that springboards their own business into success".

Le Wagon proudly boasts that "the results speak for themselves: more than 100 start-ups have been launched by Le Wagon alumni, with 25 of having successfully raised funding to date".

"Fifteen Le Wagon students have raised more than A$1.5 million in external investment, and 10 more have raised between A$300,000 and A$900,000 each. Successful companies that have emerged from Le Wagon include A-line (formerly Krawd), Kudoz, Regaind (which was acquired by Apple) and Travelsify."

On the Australian launch, co-founder and chief executive of Le Wagon, Boris Paillard, said: "The whole team is excited about Le Wagon's Australian journey. When we were looking for where to open next, we saw that something significant was going on in Australia in terms of entrepreneurial and tech activity.

"The incredible level of engagement in industry meetups and within the startup community really resonated with us, and we're confident that we really can help Australia's entrepreneurs build world-class products."

The company also notes that it has "become one of the world's fastest growing tech communities stretching from Paris and Berlin to Sao Paulo and Tokyo thanks to its specialist resource platform and world-class community of teachers who run the in-person bootcamps".

"The Le Wagon curriculum is based on a collaborative peer-based learning model, where students solve daily challenges in pairs and bigger projects small groups in the classroom. Students then have lifelong access to the online platform, which is constantly updated with new tutorials, videos and tools, which allows the 2,000 strong alumni to communicate, learn and collaborate on an ongoing basis."

Charly Martin, who heads Le Wagon in Sydney, said: "The coding education market in Australia is still developing, and traditional institutions are simply not giving people the skills that they need to succeed, and to fill the widening technical skills gap in the Australian workforce. Le Wagon offers a practical, personalised solution that provides the tools to enable a whole generation of entrepreneurs and creative workers."

Paal Ringstad, driver at Le Wagon Melbourne, added: "Coding is like English. In 2018 you need it to work and communicate, but not everyone becomes a writer, the same way that not everyone who can code has to become a developer.

"There are many pathways that students can take after a bootcamp, whether as as a junior Web developer, product manager, consultant or startup founder. Le Wagon focuses on creating dynamic communities who share entrepreneurial and creative values, and it is this alignment that makes the bootcamps so great."

For those wondering what a nine-week bootcamp that promises to teach its students such a great amount of truly useful information they will find out at either the Sydney or Melbourne Le Wagon Meetup pages, where you'll see that the price is A$10,000.

So, it's not for the feint hearted, but with a curriculum that has me interested too, just by reading the Le Wagon bootcamp programme, I just wish I had the spare $10,000!

The company notes that "the first batches of Australian students are due to commence their bootcamp on 19 February in Sydney and 5 March in Melbourne", so there are clearly people out there wanting to take their skills to the next level and are prepared to make the investment. Applications are now open for Sydney here, and Melbourne here.  

With Le Wagon "ranked as the best coding bootcamp in the world based on students ratings", the company clearly knows its stuff, and to tempt students into attending, will offer "a taste of Le Wagon", with "a number of free taster demo days planned in Melbourne and Sydney".

You can see final projects from previous boot camps at the Le Wagon Demo Day page, with Le Wagon's YouTube channel available, too

To see full images on mobile, turn device horizontal. 

Here are Le Wagon's founders (from L - R): Romain Paillard, Boris Paillard and Sebastien Saunier:

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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