While interning with netlogx, I had the opportunity to do a three-week externship through Techpoint. The tech-focused “boot camp” was held on Marian University’s campus and aimed to prepare students for entry into the Techpoint internship program next summer. Before I go into the nitty-gritty of the camp, let me give you some background into the organization behind it. Techpoint is an organization focused on keeping tech talent in Indianapolis. They have programs for students of all ages in tech or business fields. They truly believe in Indianapolis and are excited for its future as one of the larger tech markets in the country.

The camp consisted of three weeks of intensive front-end development instruction using JavaScript and HTML/CSS taught by Davey and Seth from Fretless, a local programming consultant group. During lectures, Davey would blow our minds with the capabilities of JavaScript as we would attempt to follow along. He would assign a project for the night with several components of varying difficulty, and as a team we would have to figure out how to complete it. My 42 fellow boot campers and I grew close over the three weeks of living together and pushing through the challenging curriculum. We had a lot of fun together and I developed strong friendships with a couple of classmates from Purdue. As a main focus of the camp, a community setting was created that fostered relationships that we can utilize as we progress in our careers in Indianapolis.

On Fridays, we would have a day-long class of professional development, but (thankfully) they kept the content diverse and engaging. We covered AGILE and SCRUM, personal finance, Strengths Finder, intern testimonials, and mock interviews. They set us up for success by preparing us for handling job offers, providing perspective with the cost of living in different cities, and giving us the resources to make educated decisions with our money. The camp had a team from Belithe come in and teach us about SCRUM using interactive activities and lectures, giving all of us a good handle on how the new standard for project management works. I found the mock interview to be incredibly helpful because it sparked a conversation on resumes, as we all had to share our resumes in order for them to be used in the interview process. Being able to look at so many unique styles and strategies for a single career path was helpful for me to improve my own resume.

My time at Xtern boot camp turned out to be eye opening regarding how big of a tech scene Indianapolis has, from startups to Salesforce. I learned so much more than programming at this camp: it helped me develop professionally and taught me the value of a community atmosphere in such a large field like tech. The Xtern boot camp was an incredible experience that I would recommend for any up and coming tech student in Indiana looking to jumpstart their career.

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