Greenville’s The Iron Yard has graduated another class of junior developers.
The coding school held its Demo Day at The Warehouse Theatre in Greenville last week, signaling the end of a three-month crash course in coding that the school has held since 2013 to address a deficit of skilled developers in the local tech community.
Eighteen students presented websites and applications in various stages of completion in hopes of impressing potential employers.
Joe Walling, owner of Greenville-based software development firm Walling Info Systems, was in attendance and said some of the applications had “real potential.”
Representatives from software development firm Worthwhile and email security company Mail Protector were also in attendance.
The three-month course promises students that they will be able to build impressive websites and applications, no matter their prior experience in coding. Students then present their projects to the local tech community at the end of the course.
The school teaches front-end and back-end engineering as well as mobile engineering and design. Courses are held at 22 locations throughout the country and cost $13,900.
“Our courses are so important to the development community, because they bring career changers with little to no experience in coding up to speed very quickly. We’re changing the definition of what a junior developer is,” said instructor Joel Taddei. “The courses provide an option for people who can’t afford to go back to college for a degree.”
WATCH // Instructor Joel Taddei discusses coding classes at The Iron Yard.
While three months might sound like a short time to become proficient in something as difficult as computer programming, the latest class of junior developers produced impressive applications, some of which are commercially viable.
- Front-end engineering student Matthew Rice presented FullScope, an application that allows families of hospital patients to connect with people who can help them meet their emotional, financial, spiritual or basic needs.
Families can create a profile and list their needs on the site. Then people can submit their choice of donation. The application is a combination of Facebook and GoFundMe, according to Rice. He got the idea from his struggle with cancer.
“I was diagnosed with an endodermal sinus tumor at 2 years old,” said Rice. “My parents were told I had three months to live. I can only imagine how difficult that must have been for them during that time. So I wanted to build something that could help the community that did so much for them. I really want families to have somewhere they can come to share those needs safely and have a support system from the community.”
Rice, who previously worked at Starbucks, said he hopes to find a software development job and add more features to the site, including a chat function.
- Kirby Munson, a front-end engineering student and recent Clemson University graduate, presented rePurpose, a site that allows people to sell clothing and other items to raise money for causes, which range from personal needs to fundraisers. The application is a combination of Etsy and GoFundMe.
- Davis Crain, a back-end engineering student and former Starbucks employee, presented Fat Hen, an application that allows users to review local farmers markets and find vendor information. The application is comparable to Yelp or Angie’s List.
The site features a listing of farmers markets and independent grocers throughout the state, including Greenville’s Swamp Rabbit Café and Grocery. It also allows stores to upload their weekly inventory. The site isn’t public yet.
“If I get some interest from local farmers markets and vendors, I’m open to the idea of taking this further into a valuable service for people,” said Crain.
The Iron Yard, located in Suite 400 at 101 N. Main St., is holding an open house for interested residents on Aug. 25 at 5 p.m. The next coding course begins on Sept. 12. The school is also accepting applications for its spring course, which begins on Jan. 9.
For more information, visit theironyard.com/locations/greenville.