Cayman Code Academy (CCA), welcomed 25 individuals who took part in introductory code courses taught by Amanda Iverson, a lead instructor of Code Fellows based in Seattle, Washington. The academy sets out to cultivate passionate skilled coders and deliver internationally recognised curriculum that engages directly with the Cayman Islands’ tech community. The initiative, which was recently developed by Cayman Enterprise City (CEC), the University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) and Code Fellows, is helping to ensure that Cayman’s flourishing digital economy and leading-edge companies have access to the talent they need.
One of the first programming partnerships established in the greater Caribbean, 101 and 102 courses were offered to individuals with no prior experience to provide a sound introduction and access to industry-leading expertise. “This new network expands our knowledge and acts as an important step towards connecting with tech professionals and industry experts,” explained CCA participant Anna Marie Propper. “As a complete novice, I found the high level of support and student to teacher/TA ratio extremely helpful."
This is the inaugural year that CCA courses are being offered at CEC’s Strathvale House location in the heart of George Town. Intermediate, advanced and professional level course are expected to launch in 2020 and graduates will be offered internship opportunities and mentorship-placements with technology companies operating within CEC’s Cayman Tech City, which is now home to more than 175 tech-focused companies. “We’ve recognised an opportunity and growing need to produce world-class developers,” said CEC’s CEO Charlie Kirkconnell. “We want to provide opportunities for Caymanians and residents so that they can join global companies operating out of CEC’s special economic zones and create innovative startups of their own. We’re helping to diversify Cayman’s economy and by offering immersive, world-renowned code education we’re developing a solid platform for a vibrant technology ecosystem to thrive.”
Founded in 2013, the Seattle-based academy, Code Fellows, has helped over 1,158 students find rewarding new careers, with a median salary of USD $72,500.00 per year for the 93% of graduates who are working in-field. “At Code Fellows, we believe that coding isn’t just for the elite, it’s for all of us,” explained Mitchell Robertson, VP of Code Fellows who visited the Cayman Island during the introductory courses. “We know that the end goal for most students attending our schools is to secure a job in the tech industry. Coding is for everyone: the second-lifer wanting to learn a new skill; the bright woman looking to shatter the paradigm and make the industry a better place; the wrong-turn taker looking for a second chance and a brighter future; the entrepreneur looking to build a great company. We’re very honored to be a part of their journey and very proud of our students’ achievements. This is why we are excited about the partnership with Cayman Code Academy, CEC and UCCI to help change the lives of Caymanians through the power of technical education and our proven curriculum. This will undoubtedly lead to stronger businesses, more talented workforce, and a stronger Cayman Islands economy.”
While in Cayman, course instructor Amanda Iverson taught 25 individuals and 3 local based course instructors who are now qualified to teach Code 101: Explore Software Development and Code 102: Intro to Software Development. “I had the privilege and opportunity to work directly with many individuals in the Cayman Islands community and learn from them about who they are, what their background is, why they are interested in software development, and what they need to keep their interest in coding strong,” explained Iverson. “Everyone had something unique to bring to their career, and when working with something as flexible as technology, everyone had their own way of using it.”
When asked about further advise for individuals interested in participating in CCA courses Iverson noted, “by simply attempting to code, you will only walk away with a different perspective, a new skill to add to your CV and a better understanding of where our society is moving towards.”
Registration is now open for Code 101: Explore Software Development, which takes place Saturday, 30 November 2019. For more information and to register visit www.caymancodeacademy.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.