For the second time in three months, Lifion (an ADP brand) hosted presenters from Columbia Engineering Boot Camps as part of the program’s Demo Day showcase event on the evening of Wednesday, January 22nd.
For the majority of the 75 budding web, data, and cybersecurity technologists in attendance, the celebratory event marked the first opportunity to show off their newly acquired skills outside of a classroom setting. The room was packed with industry professionals from a diverse range of companies, including J.P. Morgan, Equinox, Wiley, Warner Brothers, The National Basketball Players Association, and Compass.
Nerves, high spirits, and teamwork were on display as boot camp learners discussed the ideas, motivation, and technical components behind their projects.
What is Demo Day?
Trilogy hosts several Demo Days throughout the year for the participants that have completed the boot camps at each of its partnering universities. The event affords learners the opportunity to engage with local industry professionals and showcase one of three projects that they work on during the course of their 12- or 24-week program. The event marks the culmination of weeks of hard work and dedication.
Demo Day has proved to be a rite of passage, with boot camp alumni returning to show their support and see what the newest cohorts of program participants have been busy creating.
Event attendees also include hiring managers and technologists from a variety of companies. They are encouraged to engage with learners by providing feedback on projects and presentation skills, as well as sharing mentoring advice that can help them in the field.
“The Demo Days have a great community feel,” noted David Bokil, a Rutgers Coding Bootcamp alum who is now a web developer with the National Basketball Players Association. “It’s a cool, full-circle experience as an alum to come back and be able to check out the student projects knowing that we’ve been in their shoes.”
A Chance to Stand Out
With the majority of the presenting learners actively pursuing new job opportunities, Demo Day provides the perfect chance to practice talking about their new skill set in a low-stress environment. Learners are encouraged to come equipped with copies of their polished resume and even business cards that may include their LinkedIn or GitHub information.
For Marmina Abdelmalek, Lead Technical Product Manager at Lifion by ADP, Demo Day provides a great opportunity to recruit candidates for a number of technical positions across the company relating to data science and cybersecurity.
“There were a number of strong technical candidates who were able to articulate the technical components of their projects clearly and efficiently. These students exhibited the type of composure and thoughtfulness that we look for at ADP across the technical org,” said Abdelmalek. “It’s great to have this type of program to draw from locally here in New York City.”
Previous Columbia Engineering Boot Camps Demo Day presenters have used the event as a launchpad to land coveted positions with top companies such as Infosys, PepsiCo, The Federal Reserve Bank, Greystone, and iCIMS.
ADP & Trilogy: Training the Next Generation of Technologists
In addition to hosting Demo Days, ADP has a multi-year history of success recruiting candidates from Trilogy-powered programs to join their team. Boot camp participants from across the country have landed a variety of roles at the company — from Full Stack Developers to Consultants, UX/UI Specialists, and Database Managers.
For Michael Smith, a graduate of the Trilogy-powered Full Stack Web Development program at Georgia Tech, the idea of working for a company like ADP seemed far-fetched given his lack of previous technical experience. “I’d never coded a thing coming into the program. I came from an events management background, and after seeing what most developer jobs required, I was a bit skeptical of my job prospects,” Smith said.
Still, he stayed the course while juggling a full-time job and family, often completing homework and Trilogy’s career service milestones after hours. Smith regularly met with a Trilogy-appointed Career Director who helped navigate his career aspirations by advising on how to best position his newfound skills to employers.
“The program was tough but one of the best experiences I’ve had. I’ve recommended it to a number of friends and always point to myself as proof of what someone can accomplish when they put their mind to it. I worked hard on both the in-class work and career development piece. I’d advise anyone in the program to make sure they are focused on both if their end goal is a new job.”
Smith’s tenacity paid off. After receiving a series of rejections from various companies in the Atlanta metro area, he caught the attention of ADP’s recruiting team after a Georgia Tech Boot Camps Demo Day. “I applied for an Applications Developer role and went through a number of interviews. I thought I’d bombed at least one portion of the technical interview, but ADP was good about seeing my potential. I was able to articulate what I got wrong and my thought process, which was critical.”
Now, in his fourth month on the job, Smith is loving his new career and work at ADP. He credits both the program and the networking opportunities it provided with helping him land his dream job. “It’s been a great experience thus far. I feel fortunate to have come through the program and landed at such a supportive company like ADP.”
Michael Smith is just one example of the positive impact Trilogy-powered boot camp participants are having on companies of all shapes and sizes around the world.
For ADP and alumni such as Bokil, Trilogy’s Demo Day continues to offer a unique way to connect with top technical talent and show support for the next generation of technologists across the country. “I always enjoy coming back to see what students are showcasing at Demo Day. It’s an inspiring reminder of what can be accomplished with hard work and a little curiosity.”
Interested in attending an upcoming Demo Day near you? Check out our Demo Day hub for dates and event details.
Trilogy would like to thank Lifion by ADP for providing event space to host multiple events to support learning opportunities for boot camp participants. Lifion by ADP, through Illuminate I/O, serves NYC-based offices as representation of the ADP Business Resource Group, Adelante. Its mission and vision are to empower associates internally through education to develop and grow within their roles while reaching out to the wider tech community to empower future technologists through Mock Technical Interviews and mentorship opportunities.