image Evelyn’s work-life has always been a motivation and a way for her to keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive. She's been steadily employed in various fields since the age of 14, never out of work for more than a month.

Evelyn was in her fifth year as office manager of an immigration consulting company in Vancouver when she decided it was time to pivot her career. She was keen to pursue a career as a web developer, and her journey began with our Intro to Web Development part-time program in August 2019.

Prior to Lighthouse, Evelyn explored the basics of HTML, CSS and JavaScript on her own at home. Though not in-depth enough to give her advanced skills, her introduction to programming was a starting point to begin a new chapter of her life in web development.

“I would highly recommend the part-time course for those who are not 100% sure if coding it is for them or convinced if a Bootcamp is worth it,” she says. “The part-time course gives you the chance to experience a web developer’s environment and count on an experienced mentor who will guide you through the first steps of becoming a web developer.”

Evelyn’s experience before Lighthouse Labs

Evelyn moved to Canada in 2014 with her husband after completing about 70% of a BBA program. To improve her language skills, she took three months studying English and saved her money to enroll in a marketing diploma program at Langara College in Vancouver.

She completed the marketing diploma in summer 2019. Instead of pursuing a career in marketing, Evelyn felt it was time for a fresh start, in a field completely new to her.

“When people hear about my decision to change my career, they ask me, why now and why IT?” she says. “My answer is always the same: why not? I was always fascinated by the tech environment, but never thought I would be able to ‘fit in’ due to the lack of background and knowledge in technology or computer systems. This situation persisted until I got involved with the tech community and found Lighthouse Labs. The IT community in Vancouver is enormous and inclusive. People want you to participate and be part of something bigger.”

Evelyn found Lighthouse Labs through some of her friends who happened to be alumni, as well as through research on the Internet. “It made me more curious and interested to become a web developer. Meanwhile, I researched as much information as possible regarding Bootcamp options.”

Curious and motivated, Evelyn attended one of our info sessions in Vancouver to learn more about what we do.

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How the part-time program acted as a springboard for Bootcamp

At Lighthouse Labs, we offer two types of programs: full-time and part-time. Both have different outcomes but the two can work together in bridging the gap as the part-time programs allow students to explore their curiosity of programming. After all, committing to a new career and spending 12 weeks building the foundations of a new craft is a major decision.

“Until [a Lighthouse Labs] info session, I wasn’t convinced to make the Bootcamp because I wasn’t willing to stay away from the job market for a long time or to invest a significant amount of money on something I wasn’t sure if it was for me,” she says. “During the info session, I heard about the part-time course for the first time and got super interested. That was the perfect opportunity I was looking for before applying for the Bootcamp. I saw the part-time course as a ‘trial’ for the Bootcamp, and it worked exactly as I expected. I could set my expectations and comprehend what Lighthouse would give me in return if I decided to take the Bootcamp.”

In fact, Evelyn did decide to take the Bootcamp. She’s currently enrolled in Vancouver’s Nov. 25 cohort and is on track to graduate in February 2020.

Part-time programs are not just for aspiring developers

Our part-time programs don’t necessarily need to be the means to an end, but they can equip one with the necessary technical skills for tech-adjacent and lesser-technical roles. We’ve had professionals with a background in digital marketing, product and project management, email marketing, advertising, and many others enroll in our part-time programs.

For working professionals, part-time programs take up just two evenings of your week, for six weeks. Programs are offered on a rolling schedule with start dates every two months throughout the year. Classes are three hours between 6-9 p.m. with a one-hour lecture followed by two hours of hands-on learning supported by an experienced developer who acts as a mentor.

Evelyn says working with an experienced mentor as well as meeting classmates in a similar situation as her were two of the best takeaways of the program.

“Lighthouse’s content is engaging, while learning you can work on a project of your own, which you’ll be able to add to your portfolio lately,” Evelyn says. “It is interesting to be able to learn and build something at the same time, I find it as a way to measure the effort you are putting on your studies.”

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