There are a lot of programs out there that teach you to code, and most I tried were too boring, too basic, or too much like a lecture hall class. And then one day I visited the Skillcrush site and it was like falling in love. It was exactly what I wanted and never knew existed until that moment.
Top 3 reasons I had love-at-first-sight feelings for Skillcrush:
- They weren’t pitching me on what I would learn, they were pitching me on what I would make with my skills.
- They empower women to pursue careers where women are underrepresented.
- I was impressed with the content on their blog—the copy was useful and not just promotional.
- (Bonus bullet point: their locked-content/unauthorized page is a picture of a cat wearing a wig.)
My “Shut Up and Take My Money” Moment
Skillcrush had 3 career tracks (they call them Career Blueprints) I could choose from. I’m a budget savvy person who frets about the smallest of expenses, so I couldn’t make the $399 plunge without knowing how the courses were—I didn’t want to pay for another boring learning experience I’ve had before. So I decided to take their free 10-day boot camp course.
It was amazing. It wasn’t a 60 minute video recording of a lecture hall discussion. It wasn’t a logic game. It wasn’t a virtual console asking me to input commands. Each day had a short, 2-4 minute introductory video to a new topic followed by live examples and in-module, hands-on mini-assignments and a do-it-yourself homework assignment.
Six days into the boot camp, I signed up for their next Web Designer Career Blueprint class and didn’t even care what the price was—I knew this was it. The thing I’ve been waiting for. Shut up and take my money, Adda Brenir!
7 Things You Need to Know About the Skillcrush Experience
The learning format is: 1) to introduce you to a new topic, 2) have you play around with an example of the new topic, and 3) create a version of that topic from scratch using what you just learned.
- You can watch your daily online module and complete your homework in less than an hour.
- You can work at your own pace—whether that’s with the class, working ahead, or catching up.
- Every day you have proof that you learned something, and you complete the homework feeling accomplished, excited, and ready to learn more.
- You and your classmates work together to help each other solve tough assignments.
- It’s not graded—everyone does their best, and you get out of it as much as you put into it.
- The class instructors are available for Google Hangouts and by email to help you with your assignments or to understand broader concepts.
Do you think you’ll love Skillcrush, too?
If any of these bullet points apply to you, then I think you’ll love Skillcrush, too.
- Your motto is to never stop learning and you want to pick up something useful and new.
- You want to move into a career that pays better and has better job security.
- You want to become a freelancer.
- You want to work remotely.
- You want to build your own portfolio site to help your job prospects.
- You want to learn skills that will compliment your job in marketing/journalism/etc.
If you have any questions about my experience taking a Skillcrush course, leave it in the comments below or reach out to me on Twitter. I wrote this blog post out of the sheer awesomeness of the experience I had, and I think there are a lot of other women and men out there who would find it just as useful, fun, and career-enhancing as I do.
October 2015 update
I just finished my second Skillcrush Career Blueprint, and the result of this is right here. I designed this WordPress site at the end of the WordPress blueprint. With my web designer blueprint skills and my WP developer skills, I’m ready to take on the world!
September 2016 update
Things are going pretty well! I’m growing my web design business while also including my marketing skills. Skillcrush has done a great job of keeping alumni active—we even have our own Slack channel to connect with others. I love Skillcrush so much I’m now an ambassador of the program. But don’t let that shy you away from giving this a try!