Sneak Peek | Data Science Bootcamp And UI/UX Designer/Front-End Developer Bootcamp Coming Soon To NSS

May 10, 2017
John Wark

We all know that software technology is constantly evolving. This evolution drives change in which technologies are used in Nashville, how technologies are leveraged by employers, and what skills and knowledge are needed in new tech talent. We try to monitor those changes in Nashville’s tech talent demand. We also try to collaborate with employers and working professionals to identify opportunities to help meet changing needs through training.

Based on our conversations over the past two or three years we have identified two new programs that are planned for launch later this year. We’re ready to start sharing more information on these two programs with the community even though we can’t yet start taking applications or discuss all of the details. We’d love your feedback and input on these programs as they become better defined over the next few months.

The two new programs are:

  1. Data Science Bootcamp
  2. Front-end Web Designer/Developer Bootcamp

Note: Before NSS can formally launch any new program we must first receive program approval from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC). Both new programs have been submitted to THEC and will hopefully be approved by the commission during their July meeting. Any dates in this blog post are speculative and based on the assumption that the programs will be approved in July. This blog post is not intended to solicit interest from potential students in either program but only to share information about our plans with our alumni, our partners, and the Nashville tech community.

Data Science Bootcamp

The Data Science Bootcamp is designed to train students to work in data-intensive analytical jobs such as Data Scientist, Data Analyst, Big Data Engineer, etc. We have been talking with data scientists, big data engineering professionals, and employers in Nashville for at least three years now about the growing demand for trained new talent in these job areas. Everyone’s expectation has been that demand for these jobs was going to rapidly increase in the years ahead. And indeed, we are seeing that acceleration in demand both locally and across the entire country.

In fact, multiple recent national surveys spoke to the need to train many more people to work in data science/analytics roles. One, from McKinsey, titled “The need to lead in data and analytics” noted the following:

Data scientists, in particular, are in high demand. Our 2011 report hypothesized that demand for data scientists would outstrip supply. This is in fact what we see in the labor market today, despite the fact that universities are adding data and analytics programs and that other types of training programs are proliferating. Average wages for data scientists in the United States rose by approximately 16 percent a year from 2012 to 2014. This far outstrips the less than 2 percent increase in nominal average wages across all occupations in US Bureau of Labor Statistics data. … 

This trend is likely to continue in the near term. While we estimate that the number of graduates from data science programs could increase by a robust 7 percent per year, our high-case scenario projects even greater (12 percent) annual growth in demand, which would lead to a shortfall of some 250,000 data scientists.

We believe that the Nashville area has an untapped supply of latent talent for data analytical work. But, that talent needs access to accelerated, focused, real-world training. All of which sounds like our thing! So we’ve designed a Data Science Bootcamp to help address this need. Our program is currently planned to be a part-time evening program that will meet two evenings a week and on Saturdays for a total of nine months. The program will have lots of hands-on training in software engineering skills required to do data science. Students will apply the necessary stats/math/analytical skills against real-world problems drawn from a wide range of problem domains, including: digital marketing, supply chain, healthcare, retail and financial services. Our current hope is to launch the program in October (subject to THEC approval).

To volunteer to assist with curriculum review and enhancement or to get additional information, please jump to the Data Science Bootcamp page and submit your email address - we’ll share additional information about the program as it becomes available.

Front-End Web Designer/Developer Bootcamp

The Front-end Web Designer/Developer Bootcamp is a new, specialized version of our Web Developer Bootcamp. Rather than graduate a traditional full-stack developer, the new program is intended to train students to work across the entire spectrum of front-end design and development tasks. Students will be trained in User Experience (UX) design, User Interface (UI) design and the implementation of those designs into working code in the browser. We think of this class as preparing students to be “full-stack front-end developers” (except we’re not sure that’s a thing quite yet).

What is clear when we look at the career trajectories that many of our graduates have taken, and when we talk with many development managers, is that this hybrid designer/developer role is very real. We believe the growth in demand for this skill set has been driven over the last five years by several trends: the dramatic increase in complexity of the browser tech stack as an app development and deployment platform, the increasing complexity of designing and developing usable interfaces in a multi-device/multi-form factor environment, and the non-stop nature of change and evolution of all of the above.

We expect that this bootcamp will be particularly appropriate and attractive to individuals that already have some training and/or experience doing design work but that want to extend their skills into the area of digital product design and development. Our current thinking is that our first Front-end Web Designer/Developer Bootcamp will launch either in mid-November or January. But that’s subject to THEC approval in July. We will start to share more information about the syllabus/curriculum for this new program over the next few weeks so that we can solicit feedback from the community.

We are actively working with the community, both employers and individual professionals, to ensure that the goals and curriculum of these programs will prepare graduates to become productive members of the Nashville tech community. We’d like to invite any of you who have experience and input to share to register on the program landing pages that are linked to below.

To volunteer to assist with curriculum review and enhancement or to get additional information, please jump to the Front-end Web Designer/Developer Bootcamp page and submit your email address - we’ll share additional information about the program as it becomes available.

Topics: Hiring?, News, Community, UI/UX, Analytics + Data Science