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Bootcamps are a higher education alternative that could become eligible for federal student loan funding

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coding bootcamps

According to a recent POLITICO article, a new type of education provider has swept onto the scene: the coding bootcamp, an intensive, short-term training program for students trying to land high-tech jobs. The Department of Education and Betsy DeVos may want to get behind bootcamps.

According to a 2018 survey by Digital Ocean, 61 percent of bootcamp grads felt ready for a technology career, versus 36 percent of those who graduated from a four-year college.  The survey data backs up the growing appeal of bootcamp graduates: Younger hiring managers told DigitalOcean that they favor hiring bootcamp graduates, while older managers are either neutral or wary.

A career in coding is not for everyone, but given a future wherein AI, machine learning, neural networks and deep learning will all play critical roles, bootcamps may be an important option to consider. Coding Dojo says those who attend a bootcamp subsequent to college can boost earnings between 59 and 117 percent. “Learning to code can be transformative, and one of the most concrete measurements of that is the economic mobility that our graduates realize,” says Coding Dojo COO and CFO Jay Patel.

Bootcamps are often paired up with well-known universities to obtain the all-important national accreditation which is key to US Department of Education recognition and federal student loan eligibility. US colleges and universities are allowed to out-source up to 50% of their coursework.

As bootcamps proliferate, policymakers in Washington have been asking whether the federal government should get behind the idea—specifically, by opening up some of the $130 billion it doles out annually in student loan guarantees and Pell Grants for higher education.