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Tech Educators Opens Junior Developer Mentor Program

Written by James Adams

Tech Ed Junior Developer Mentor Program

One of the elements that we are most proud of is the way in which our local community has been so willing to support the work we are doing in training new developers. The community has long required a different on-ramp for developers. The sheer shortfall of developers within the tech community, as well as individual circumstances, has demonstrated that whilst computer science and other approaches to creating developer talent have served a purpose for such a long time, the demand is outstripping the supply.

Learning to be a software developer can be daunting, at times you may not wish to ask your boss, your friend, or heck even your teacher and as we know there is more than one way to approach certain problems. Having a mentor gives you a chance to seek out a different point of view, have someone who may not be directly involved in your day-to-day learning, or work environment, and just be a friendly ear for support as you take the step into becoming a software developer. Sound like something you are interested in? Let’s dive into what it means and how we can support you in becoming a mentor.

So what’s involved?

As our students progress through 101 – 201, they will be learning the fundamentals of their course. At the 301 stage, also known as intermediate software development, we will introduce their mentor. The mentor program will run for the entire 301 stage (4 weeks) and then formally for a further 12 to 24 weeks post-graduation. This gives the students time to truly gain from the mentorship as they go for interviews, settle into a new role and find their feet in the world. During this time, we ask our mentors to support us with:

  • The team will meet with you during the final weeks of a 201 before assigning mentors and outline current students in the cohort to ascertain best fit for you within the community.
  • A once-a-month face-to-face “coffee” meeting, usually for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • General support with questions, this cadence can be frequent or infrequent depending on the student.
  • Liaising with our head of student mentoring, Dom Davis, to see if there is any further need from Tech Educators to support our students.

How do Tech Educators help me?

We want our mentors to be supported through the process too, so we run a “mentor kick-off” meeting once you are accepted as a mentor, to run through some of the feedback we would like to see as part of a mentoring process, generally, that is a run down of areas of support and where students may need some extra help if there are big gaps for example.

We are also on hand if there is a situation in supporting someone where you aren’t sure of the best way forward too. We really hope that by mentoring a junior developer our mentors develop skills in supporting and nurturing future talent within their own organisations and we want to help support that happening.

What’s the screening process?

Firstly, if you are interested in becoming a mentor for Tech Educators, please get in touch through our contact form, and select hire talent as the contact reason. After that, there will be a meeting with James Adams and Dom Davis to run through the role and how you can help, and if successful, we will then invite you to the next mentor induction event, where you can meet other mentors and the team.

We really see this as an impactful, positive opportunity and if its something you feel is for you, please do get in touch.

About the Author

James has 8 years with Fortune 200 US firm ITW, experience of managing projects in China, USA, and throughout Europe. James has worked with companies such as Tesco, Vauxhall, ITW, Serco, McDonalds. James has experience in supporting start-up and scale up companies such as Readingmate, Gorilla Juice and Harvest London. James completed his MBA at the University of East Anglia in 2018.

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