In Cities Across the US, Fintech Boot Camps Rise to Fill Need from Local Employers

Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

As the winter holidays approach, many consumers will skip the lines at brick-and-mortar shops and instead spend their money with online retailers. And many of these online stores will rely on a robust tech infrastructure to power their transactions. This underlying framework serves as just one example of how financial technology, or fintech, is transforming the way the world does business. Fintech has been exploding in growth in 2019 and by all reports will continue to shine brightly into the new year. 

Consider the money being injected into the industry. By the end of last quarter, fintech had raised $24.6 billion for the year, already surpassing the annual total for 2017. In the third quarter of 2019 alone, fintech funding topped $8.9 billion. Worldwide there are 58 fintech unicorns valued in aggregate at $213.5 billion.

What do these high-growth companies and big-dollar investments mean for the average worker? Opportunity. When businesses beef up their financial resources they can then concentrate on hiring suitable talent to take the company to the next level. Digital bank Chime, for instance, recently raised $500 million in funding. The CEO plans to use the resources to double his employee count within one year and open a Chicago office.

Trilogy Education stays ahead of these tech business trends so that it can help its university partners offer motivated individuals high-velocity programs aligned with the local labor market. When Trilogy parsed the data on the fintech industry, it saw that there was a major gap between the industry’s great need for talent and the number of individuals who could potentially fill the demand. So Trilogy did what it does best: it designed an intensive fintech bootcamp experience that allows universities to reskill learners into the industry or upskill them into a position that best utilizes their skills and interests. 

This past fall, Trilogy announced the launch of two inaugural fintech boot camps in partnership with Rice University in Houston and Columbia Engineering in New York City, followed soon thereafter by a fintech bootcamp at Vanderbilt University. A fourth fintech bootcamp was added in October when UNC Charlotte Continuing Education launched the city of Charlotte’s first intensive fintech training program in partnership with Trilogy.

This week, two more Trilogy partners launched fintech boot camps: the Northwestern FinTech Boot Camp in Chicago, and the Southern Methodist FinTech Boot Camp in Dallas. 

These markets are hungry for fintech talent. Chicago has long been considered a leading center for financial services, with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange being the largest futures exchange in the world. The city is home to dozens of fintech startups and success stories including Braintree, Morningstar, and Avant, the last of which was recently valued at just under $2 billion. These companies are competing for talent with major financial services employers like JP Morgan, Discover Bank, and Deloitte, which were among the top 10 companies in the city sourcing tech talent in the last 12 months, according to Burning Glass Labor Insights.

Similarly in Dallas financial services companies like JP Morgan, Bank of America, and Charles Schwab are among the top 10 employers in Dallas currently sourcing talent with coding skills. In the last 12 months alone, Dallas-area employers posted 130,000+ jobs requiring the technology and data skills that will be taught in SMU’s newest boot camp.

Skills in Trilogy-powered fintech bootcamps are developed through applied experience with a wide range of technology tools relevant to financial services, including the following:

  • Analyzing stock movement using financial APIs in Jupyter notebooks
  • Creating predictive models for stock prices with time series analysis using Python
  • Building a decentralized identity system using blockchain technologies
  • Applying machine learning algorithms to analyze sentiment scores for cryptocurrency news
  • Using TensorFlow to build deep learning neural networks to predict financial outcomes
  • Developing an AI-driven robo-advisor capable of providing financial services with minimal human intervention

The fintech bootcamps at Northwestern and SMU join a suite of Trilogy-powered programs already offered at each school. Northwestern’s bootcamps include coding, data science, and cybersecurity. Learners in Northwestern bootcamps have gone from being a social worker to data analyst and from an undocument immigrant to web developer. SMU bootcamps include coding and data science. Recent learners have won a major hackathon championship and have secured a six-figure salary at a Fortune 500 company.


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