Corporate sponsored bootcamp grad Denied

I took a 12 week 480 hour full stack web development bootcamp for free with a corporate sponsor who said the first 2 days of being there “We want to hire all of you and we have the positions open for your to fill. Our intention is for all of you to get jobs. Just focus, work hard, and everything will be alright.”

Welp, we waited 3 months after the camp for them to tell us we needed to do curricular learning because the bootcamp didn’t teach us a couple things, and that the job they wanted us to test for was actually a mid-level, client facing position where your team was placed within the company you’re serving.

I was not chosen. As weren’t about 16 of the 18 we had graduate camp. Mind you, we killed it as a group. So many of us could actually do the tasks the corporate company asked us to do.

So now I’m left with trying to pick the pieces up, drowning in debt, and having to figure out how to find my first programming job in the Phoenix, AZ workforce. I’m learning React on the free time I have so I can hopefully use that to create projects I enjoy and get a job using this in need technology.

Any advice from you all? I’m desperate at this point. We were told this whole ride that if I did what the company wanted, they’d hire me. This was about to be my first time in life not drowning paycheck to paycheck.


My first instinct: was this promise ever in writing? If you were told verbally, then it’s meaningless. If you were promised, in writing, that doing “A, B and C” would guarantee you a job, and you did A, B and C, then you have some recourse maybe. I’m not a lawyer, but could be worth speaking to one about it IF you have something in writing to this effect.

Aside from that, I’m sorry you had this experience. I’ve interviewed people from various bootcamps and longer programs, and as you said in your post the shorter bootcamps have a hard time teaching “everything” (I put that in quotes on purpose). There just isn’t enough time in only 12 weeks.

If the company made you pay them for this training and promised a job and now you’re in debt, definitely seek out that lawyer. It kinda sounds to me like they wanted to make a quick buck selling some training program with no intention of actually hiring anyone. We’d need more info, though, like how many people graduated, how many DID get hired versus not hired, etc…

I did not have to fork over any money to do the camp, but I could not work at the time to do so, thus having to acquire debt in credit cards to accomplish the end result.

There was no written promise. They kept saying these verbally, both camp company and corporate company. Likely to avoid what you said, which is a lawsuit.

I know everything can’t be done in 12 weeks. I was just hoping it was enough to get my foot in the door so I could get paid to grow and acquire the rest of the knowledge I needed to be proficient as a developer.

Out of the 2 camps, Phoenix and Dallas, being 22 from PHX and about 30 from Dallas, only 2 from Dallas were chosen and I’ve only heard about 1 from PHX being chosen thus far.

I haven’t gone to bootcamp, from what I have heard it is 10-12 hour days. That would be 900-1080 hours for 3 months.

freeCodeCamps full stack certificate represents 1800 hours.

480 hours seems insufficient to learn/get hired.

To what @iandouglas mentioned. Even if there is something in writing, a promise is not a contract, promises are not enforceable. Even if there was a written document I doubt they would put in any guarantees of employment for the same reasons that colleges don’t guarantee employment on graduation.

You said you didn’t pay for the bootcamp, so you would need to show some sort of fraud, motive (like they profited by giving you free education in some way) even though they knew you couldn’t get a job that they misrepresented you could get.

I am a lawyer but this is not legal advice, do not rely on my statements, hire a lawyer if you want specific legal advice.

Just out of curiosity was the company Revature?

No it was not. It was Cognizant.

I understand that the gross time spent doesn’t quite come close to the time spent learning here on Freecodecamp. Since the camp was immersive and in person, does that not equate to a different learning environment than doing these courses? I’m not entirely sure of how long it’d truly take to complete the 1800 hours here on FCC, as pacing is always a difficulty for anyone who’s going through these things.

Keep learning. Build large projects that reflect the best work you are capable of. Start working on your job hunting skills, preparedness, and research. Keep in mind that it is common that even fully qualified developers interview for six months before getting a job.


I don’t mean to discredit your skills. You could have learned the same in a shorter amount of time. But I noticed that you mentioned that the bootcamp told you they didn’t teach you what you needed to know for the job.

And you are learning React now. So I don’t know what the bootcamp taught or what you know, I was just saying it seemed short. But you may have learned a lot and have the skills you need to get a job.

If you get a job on your own do you have to pay them?

I’m learning react because it’s a language in high need in my area, as well as a technology I’m more heavily interested in. The bootcamp focused on Java, Spring, microservices, and that was primarily it other than HTML/CSS/JS/SQL. Those technologies aren’t as in high demand for Phx. I made the switch because of the ability to get hired being a lot better if I do learn React and get good enough with it doing projects, etc.

Though you did sound like you were trying to discredit the time or skills, I understand now that your intentions were placed elsewhere.

The bootcamp neglected to teach us a few things with Test-driven development and Eureka discovery services, which could have been taught on the job for 2 weeks and been fine. These were small topics for them to bicker over.

There probably is something shady with the company if they say they want to hire everyone and have positions for everyone but only hire 3 out of 50.

Hopefully you can build on what they did teach you and get a job. Best of luck :+1:

Woah, that’s awful of them. Sorry to hear about your predicament.

If there’s any advice I can give, that would be to manage that desperation and the emotions it brings because they can affect your ability to learn and find jobs.

I wrote about desperation and how it affects goal setting a while ago. Maybe it can be useful or maybe not.

On the somewhat bright side, that’s a reasonable amount of hours and technologies. It might make learning React easier and who knows, maybe your future employers will see you as more valuable considering that you know something that are beyond the Javascript ecosystem.

Here’s wishing that you’ll keep on learning and get the job that you want at the end of your ordeal.

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Those are actually very useful technologies in term of the job market compare to just React or Angular. There isn’t any less of a demand for Java than for JavaScript, but the talent supply isn’t quite as vast. Couple with SQL, it’s actually the prefer stack for most established enterprises

Because of abundance o front-end resource online, Front-end jobs can have a lot of competition and larger pool unqualified applicants, which results in stringent selection process.

You might have dodged a bullet even with Cognizant because usually if you are hired through a contracting firm like Cognizant, your salary is lower than the actual full time company employee (this unfortunately is also why some companies prefer to use firms like Cognizant for tech talent rather than hire and cultivate their own).

The good thing is you were trained and you don’t have any obligation to pay them. I’d put your projects built during the bootcamp in your resume and portfolio, especially if you used microservice architecture in any of them. In my experience, that’s a hot keyword and people are very keen on talent that understand it. For fullstack, it is very handy to know a Front-end frameworks, so I’d showcase something that combined both what you learned in bootcamp and React.

Focus your efforts on job searching. Really use LinkedIn as much as you can. Talked to someone interesting at a meet up? Find their LinkedIn profile. See a position you are interested in on a job search site? Find the company and find the hiring manager and message them. Complete the skills section of you Indeed profile, and if you can, get your peers and other people that can evaluate your ability to endorse them. Connection is key in job search.

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Your response was amazing and I really appreciate this. Thank you and I’ll be checking out your article about desperation and why I may need a shift in perspectives to approach this career change differently.

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I really appreciate your response. Thank you for such a thoughtful and lengthy response. It means a lot to hear your view of the situation.

I’m super appreciative that I learned a bunch in the camp and that I’ve found my love for coding through it. It’s most certainly made learning react a heck of a lot easier considering there’s so much less to have to learn from new with it. I generally will always understand the syntax and it’s only a shift of how things are put together and how they work in with each other, so the learning curve is certainly less drastic now.

You find those technologies to be in need? I’ve had a hard time having any companies post listings about them, and while there may be a larger pool of candidates within the React or Front-end technology space, the amount of people who are actually making projects and who can write their own code is not as large. Many of them also won’t have the soft skills that I provide as well, which is something I know for a fact that I’ll be leveraging to acquire my first and future roles. I’ve got a passion for learning new things and for taking care of what is going on around me with my environment and co-workers, which adds value to the team. Now, that’s not to say that I should think of my bootcamp stack as worthless, because I know it’s not. I love your suggestion of using the two things together to combine my microservices and Java backend with a React front end… That’s definitely possible. I’ll work on something after this React course is done and I’ll feel more confident to start from scratch.

Thanks again for stopping to comment.

There is a reason Cognizant trained you on that particular stack. Companies like Cognizant do that because their client asked them to supply people in that stack. However, because the job is outsourced to a firm like Cognizant, it might not be in public listings.

This is why networking is important. Sometimes, the job that needs you is not on Indeed or zip recruiter. I can assure you plenty of companies use the technology you mentioned(coupled with SQL). Off the top of my head, Netflix, Wells Fargo, American Express, AT&T, Amazon all had positions looking for Java Spring and microservices experiences not that long ago, so I wouldn’t be too discourage about the stack.

Continue to learn, but more importantly continue to search, apply and network. Go to hackathons and dev groups, pick other people’s brains about their jobs.

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Thank you for the kind words.

Good luck in your learning and job search.

Thanks a lot for your kindness and effort towards helping me to improve my mindset and perspective. I appreciate that a lot.