How to find programming courses and what are the guarantees of employment

3 years ago I published my first and only article on, which was devoted to writing a small application in Angular 2. It was in beta at that time, there were few lessons on it, and I was interested in terms of entry time for compared to other frameworks / libraries from the point of view of a non-programmer.

In that article, I wrote that I work as a marketer (it’s a pity that it’s not on Google :). And in the comments, the discussion turned around why Angular, and not React, was praised by someone for the cleanliness of the code. It was very interesting and informative.

Over the past three years, I have slowly but surely moved towards a change of profession. That discussion led to the idea that there were chances. With some periodicity I took various online courses. I did some small projects for myself, tried different technologies. But, of course, some kind of systemic knowledge did not appear with such a “way of life”.

A year ago, I decided that it was time to stop confusion and vacillations and started looking for courses that, in addition to systematizing knowledge, would give me confidence that I would find work. The task, admittedly, is not an easy one. The search results give a lot of advertising online courses, where there seems to be all the components of "success". But, in fact, of course, this is not so. Reading reviews, tons of spam after one call from the sellers of these courses, reading contracts. One thing was clear - after I take courses and stop paying, no one guarantees me anything. In my opinion, this is not much different from free tons of materials in Russian and English. The same effect.

As a result, I decided to score for courses and go to college to study as a programmer. Documents have been submitted, I write joyfully about this and come across two questions: “Why do you need this” and “why not a university”?

And here I have to explain that a university is an exam and it’s nothing else, but I don’t have a passed exam and I don’t want to lose another year with incomprehensible prospects.

And a college in absentia is a practice and an opportunity to try yourself in a real company (and what the hell is not joking, go work there), some new acquaintances with people who, in the same subject, plus mathematics. Mathematics is important to me because I want to develop further in ML.
It turned out that Valentin Dombrovsky, one of the co-founders of the Learn Python courses and the MoscowPython community, saw this post.

We had an interesting discussion about training, community, personal projects, work. In this conversation, Valentine confirmed some of my thoughts, and dispelled some myths.

Looking ahead a bit, I’ll say that I managed to watch live the graduation projects of the guys and their presentations, as well as chat with some graduates to form my opinion.

With the permission of Valentine, I will give the main points from our discussions about learning how everything works in Learn Python and why there is not a word about the employment support program on the site of these courses.

Self-reproducing python community

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ Since 2012, the MoscowPython community has existed. Community is a cool topic in itself. This is communication, communication, knowledge sharing.
At some point, Ilya Lebedev, who taught in Baumanka, came to us with the idea of ​​doing courses together with one of the universities for coursera. We began to work in this direction, and at the same time decided to do our courses. The course on coursera was never launched due to bureaucratic delays, and we launched our courses.

Study, study and study again…

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ The first set of courses took place in June 2016. Our courses are quite a living organism. Since then, they have undergone certain changes. If at the start there was no division into regions, then somewhere around the 11th set we came to ensure that the groups were divided. A large amount of information and I want the student to have the opportunity to study more in the direction that is most interesting to him. At the same time, we do not limit it - at least all at once. If there is enough time and effort.

Many popular courses are held by teachers. Our curators are employees of various companies who devote their time to training. Because to them it is high. From stream to stream, some curators can change, can rest, and then return. But each curator brings his flow from beginning to end.

In offline groups, about 5-7 people are assigned to each curator. This is the optimal amount. In such a group, the curator has the opportunity for a full check of homework, discussions, answers to questions, code review of each student. With each set, we do chats with curators, where everyone can ask questions in the week, clarify information, communicate with other fellow students.

We form groups based on initial skills and knowledge. If we used to rely on student grades, this year we will rely on grading a small test that everyone will have to take. If something does not work, then, naturally, the student will be transferred to a group with an appropriate level of training.

You can work on the graduation project either alone or with a partner. We had experience when more than two people worked on the final project - this is not optimal. Someone manages to freebie. Therefore, we settled on the restriction of two people. "

What about employment?

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ In May 2019, we launched a job support program. For a very long time we watched what our graduates do after training, what problems they face. In preparation for the launch of the employment support program, we started making podcasts for June with a discussion of various relevant topics. For example, one of the last is about how to become a developer in a few months , how to look for a job in June and what you can count on.

We do not guarantee employment. Come objectively, in principle, no courses can guarantee this. But for our part, we are trying to do our best so that our graduates who are looking for work find it. During this time, we have accumulated various stories about employment, experience has accumulated. "

Employment Spoiler at Graduation Projects Presentation
Yes, when I was at the presentation of graduation projects, there one person from the stream said that during the training I received a job offer.
And Valentine on his Facebook often publishes screenshots of chats in the spirit of “found a job there,” “switched to a new job with a higher salary.”

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ By the way, notice that the employment support program . Now she works with us according to the following principle:

We will repeat this cycle after each set. And we plan that for each mailing cycle, a person who wants to stay in the database, for example, has not yet found work, submits a questionnaire again with some updated data. So far it is built like this.

Now we have about 16 companies with which we cooperate. For example, X5 Retail, Yandex, MTS Bigdata, BestDoctor. For our part, we will make efforts to ensure that the list grows .

Do not forget that personal contacts also help to find work. Visiting the various meetings and conferences that we hold is a good way to get acquainted and communicate. When looking for a job, you should not rely solely on or on us. Here we must be active, maintain communication with people from the sphere of interest.

The paths of juniors are inscrutable
And then the words of Valentine are confirmed by one of the former students who took the courses and with whom I managed to communicate. For a short period, he grew up to become one of the curators of the group, got a job in one of the large companies, and now he hires programmers in the state.

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ If we go back to the job guarantees that some courses are prescribed on the site. They write about thousands or tens of thousands of graduates. And how many real employment stories? If you look for reviews, then some units. "

The community is not only learning, but also a lot of useful

Valentin Dombrovsky: “ As I said, Learn Python courses have grown out of the MoscowPython community. We do not set ourselves the task of massively catching up with people, somehow teaching them, and then throwing and looking for the next. Our mission is to grow a community. After completing the courses, we try to give graduates useful materials, record podcasts , and hold conferences . Pupils remain in chat rooms with curators and after graduation they can calmly ask questions and consult. The curators will always prompt and answer.

Instead of an afterword

A long search and a lot of questions about how to learn, how to move, which is important, which is not very, became the reason for writing this text.

If this experience helps someone, it will be great.

I liked honesty and openness in these answers. No tricks and flaws. After communicating, I still have the feeling that the choice of these courses can be the door that I want to enter.

Already, I have an idea for a graduation project that I will do. And slowly I’m getting ready for this, collecting material. I hope that the next article will be about him and not after another three years.


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