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7 Cool Things About Being a Codecool Mentor

Codecool mentors are kick-ass digital gurus who help other people realise their dreams and become IT professionals themselves. But why would anyone do that instead of staying in their own successful tech expert and management jobs? Let's find out.

We talked with some of our mentors to find out why they like their jobs so much.

These were the top7 reasons they mentioned:
1 - Ditching monotony
2 - That heart-warming feeling of student success
3 - Being part of the Codecool culture
4 - Fun campus atmosphere
5 - Doing something meaningful
6 - An even deeper understanding of your field
7 - Becoming a manager

Since these reasons might not be obvious for anyone else, we decided to add some explanation, too.

But before going into the details, maybe we best clarify first what a Codecool mentor does. Codecool is a programming school, so they must be the teachers.

But why are they called mentors and not teachers? Because it sounds better?

Well, not exactly. We think teacher, trainer, coach, tutor and other titles sound great, too. It's just maybe mentor describes best what our colleagues actually do. Spoiler alert: they are not explaining algorithms everyday from 9 to 5.

So what is it that they do then?

Let's get this thing cleared first.

 

What does a Codecool mentor do?

They teach programming via stories and projects taken from real life - about 30 of those during our Full Stack Developer course, and fewer during shorter courses. They build on students' self-development capabilities to ensure that whatever they learn sticks for the long run, and so that students also learn to learn more effectively in the process.

Instead of preaching, they play the role of the product owner, senior colleague, team manager, and sometimes the teacher. They help challenge and evaluate sprint plans and demos, provide constructive help when students are stuck, monitor and test their progress, motivate them and share their own work experience. And finally prepare them for tech interviews before their first ever real-life tech job applications.

This is what an average week for a Full Stack mentor looks like:

  • On Monday mornings, they lead a group Q&A about last week's new concepts and materials.
  • The rest of the week until Thursday evening is about helping students learning and practicing new things. Mentors are available for coaching and consulting, and they lead some workshops if needed. They do not present concepts or theory themselves though, that part is "outsourced" to the students for self-study.
  • Friday is for demoes, for catching up with the other mentors, double-checking student progress and planning out next week.

Our short course mentors might have a different schedule, depending on the course, but the learning approach and methodology they use is the same.

 

So, now you have a better picture about what our mentors do.

Let's see 7 things they like about their jobs.

 

1 - Ditching monotony

Turns out, you can get bored of almost anything after some time, even software development. When you are really passionate about coding, maybe from an early age, you pursue it day-and-night, study it some more at school, and then you do it daily for years at work - there might come a point in your life when you feel you need a time out. That you don't want to see one more client, start another project, write down one more line of code for a while. You can call it a burnout or just a new, uneasy feeling. You feel you need to change something, though you still love coding, it's still your thing, the thing you do best.

Let's say, you recognise the feeling. But why exactly would you go and take a boring teacher's job at some boring school instead of your normally exciting tech job?

Well, for example, because it happens to be not boring after all.

Thanks to Codecools's mastery-based learning model, every day is different, every project is special here. You don't get to do the tiring, preachy stuff. You present challenges, discuss insights, answer questions (sometimes with another question), take a new point of view, explain stuff in a creative way, explore options, invent new solutions. You work by yourself, in one-to-one consultations, in smaller teams and in workshops. You teach and learn, give and get feedback, grow and develop. You oversee, manage, lead and inspire. And enjoy being part of a great team both with your students and your fellow mentors.

All-in-all, boring is definitely not the word many mentors would use when it comes to describing their work.

2 - That heart-warming feeling of student success

One of our best mentors shared his own experience: "At university I suffered with object oriented programming badly. I failed the same exams at least five times. I really started to lose hope. While preparing to give it a try for the sixth time, I already started working at a company that happened to use an OOP platform. A colleague sat down with me to explain how it works, and then, suddenly, I just got it. The concept I couldn't wrap my head around during five years of university.

Today, it is a huge feeling for me when I can be the person who helps clear up the big picture for a student when they are learning a new, challenging concept. I get this feeling at Codecool all the time, during one-on-one consulting sessions, or when I help a team stuck in their project.

I am also very proud to see my students presenting their work to peers, colleagues and our business clients at the demo sessions every Friday. They do this from the very beginning of the course. We have multiple Full Stack developer student groups at all times at different stages of their studies. Slightly uncertain demonstrations by our ProgBasics students are followed by more and more complex and confident project demos during the day. It fills my heart to see how impressed our clients are by our students and the progress they make in a year."

3 - Being part of Codecool

Our shared values are also a big part of the Codecool identity, and why our mentors choose to work here day-by-day every day. Courage (to push limits), honesty (even if it's uncomfortable), fun (also helping to thrive) and quality (in and outside the classroom) shape our culture big time.

Just like being an international school with colleagues, students and clients coming from more and more different countries and cultures, sometimes engaging in cross-border team collaboration and learning opportunities.

At Codecool, you are part of a big family-like team of dedicated colleagues, and an inspiring peer group of pro IT mentors, which is at the heart of this organisation. Everyone sharing a strong belief in continuous learning, not afraid to fail, open to challenges, and especially to some serious fun at all times.

4 - Fun campus atmosphere

Some of our students return to us as mentors later, because they enjoyed their student year with us so much.

The atmosphere is actually very similar to what you might have experienced at university. If you miss all the fun moments you had there, the type you can only have in a group of like-minded young people working hard towards shared goals, then you may find it at Codecool. ("Young" not only in the literal sense, but because of an openness to learn new things and a drive to reinvent their lives.)

Or maybe you never had such carefree and crazy student moments, either because you never went to university, or you were too distracted working hard at some side job or building a family at the time already.

Anyway, you can live or relive those fun times at Codecool as a mentor, together with your students. Let's be honest, few serious jobs come with such opportunity.

5 - Doing something meaningful

Speaking of opportunity, there is another important one: to make a real change, to contribute to something big and positive. By being a Codecool mentor you can actually change lives of real people, and this is not just a nice slogan.

We offer a completely new, future-proof profession for our students, providing a job guarantee and post-payment options at the same time. We welcome anyone over 18, who has a strong drive, good logic and analytic skills, and advanced English. Our students don't mess around. Many of them already have work experience, and they come to Codecool to work very hard building new skills enabling them to start a new career, under our mentors' guidance.

In the end our graduates get to work in new tech jobs at innovative businesses shaping our digital future. So Codecool mentors also get to have a key role in helping narrowing the global digital skills gap, student-by-student, day-by-day.

6 - An even deeper understanding of your field

Today we have to keep learning all our lives in almost any profession, especially in information technology. Thanks to Codecool's ambitious quality standards and unique business model we keep updating and improving our curriculum constantly. As a mentor, you have access to all the latest knowledge on marketable technology at all times, and the chance to deepen your knowledge in your special field, and widen it with other programming languages, skills and technologies. Also, you inevitably gain a new perspective even about stuff you already know, and face questions you might never have otherwise, while you're supporting others' learning.

7 - Becoming a manager

Besides strengthening your technical expertise, or so called hard skills, you experience a real boost of your soft skills as a mentor. Thanks to the Codecool way of learning and our growth mindset, you will also learn and grow in your position. You learn to give and take feedback manage students in groups and individually, phrase the right questions and not rush with answers, manage your time and communicate assertively, and all this in English.

If you decide to go return to software development later, you may find that you'll be a strong candidate for management roles, too.

 

Having read all the reasons now you wonder, if you should check the Codecool mentor position out, maybe bring your questions to a personal interview?

We would be happy to talk you and try to answer all those questions!

But first, let's see if you meet all the minimum criteria for the job.

 

Who can become a Codecool mentor?

You may be qualified to become a Codecool mentor, if you check all the minimum critera on the below list:

  • Have multiple years of hands-on daily work experience in IT (preferably in programming languages or technologies we teach)
  • Have some experience with Agile and Scrum
  • Have a positive attitude and patience
  • Believe in our practice-oriented, project-based learning model
  • Understand the difference between teaching and mentoring
  • Love to learn and educate yourself continuously
  • Speak English and the local language at your preferred campus fluently

 

All check? Then hesitate no more. Apply to one of our job openings and let's have a chat to find out together if the Codecool mentor position is for you.

Would you rather like to learn tech management techniques from us? Sign up for our next hands-on "How to lead the geeks?" workshop coming up on 15 April.

Talk to you soon!