Frequently Asked Questions

The Full- and Part-Time Programs

How is Startup Institute different from other programs?

Is Startup Institute a "founder school"?

How is the part-time program different from the full-time program?

How do you decide what (and how) to teach?

Why is there a focus on culture skills and emotional intelligence?

Who are the instructors?

What does your advisory board do?

How many people will be in my cohort?

How many people have been through the program?

Do I have to quit my job?

How do I find out more information about what's happening at Startup Institute?

After Your Program

Is there any information about how graduates do after completing the program?

If I am seeking a new role, will I get hired by the time the program ends?

How does Startup Institute support graduates of the full- and part-time programs?

What kind of jobs do Startup Institute graduates get?

What is it like to be an alumni of Startup Institute?

Student Backgrounds and Eligibility

What is the typical student like?

How old are Startup Institute students?

What percentage of applicants get accepted?

How would you describe a strong applicant for the full-time program?

Do I have to be a United States citizen?

Do you support students in acquiring visas?

Application Process

If I apply, do I have to do the program?

What is the difference between the application deadlines?

Are there any technical prerequisites or required skills for applicants to be accepted to Startup Institute?

Can I apply to the program in any of your cities?

How do I figure out which track is right for me?

What does the application process for the full- and part-time programs look like?

If I'm not accepted to the full- or part-time program, what are my other options?

Are there financing options?

Can I get a refund if I decide to leave the full- or part-time program after it starts?

Refund Policy and Regulatory Information

What’s the refund policy?

As an enrolled student, how do I submit a complaint?

Fundamental Skills Classes

How are your fundamental skills classes different from the full- and part-time programs?

How do you decide what to teach in the fundamental skills classes?

I am brand new to web development and/or web design. Are the fundamental skills classes right for me?

Who are the instructors?

What is the level of commitment?

Can I have a job and still do these classes?

Can I take the course online?

If I complete the fundamental skills classes, can I then apply to the full- or part-time program?

Will the fundamental skills classes fully prepare me for the web design or development tracks in the full- or part-time programs? Will the material in the full- or part-time programs be repetitive if I've already completed the classes?

What is the enrollment process?

Where do you run fundamental skills classes?

How would you describe a strong applicant for the fundamental skills classes?

Can I get a refund if I decide to leave a class after it starts?

The Full- and Part-Time Programs

How is Startup Institute different from other programs?

Our full- and part-time programs feature preparatory skills support, an in-class immersive experience, and two months of dedicated career counseling post-graduation. 

Pre-Work: 1-4 Weeks, depending on experience and skills

Full-Time Immersive: 8 Weeks

Part-Time Immersive: 12 Weeks

Career Support: 8 Weeks

Startup Institute blends skill building with network growth. Our curriculum is informed by industry demand and the very companies looking to grow their teams, while instructors are industry-practitioners, sharing the strategies, tools, and resources they use in their work each day. At the same time, you'll participate in a cross-disciplinatry project, working on-site at one of our partner companies to solve a real challenge for their orgnization. You'll build relationships with the innovators who are doing the work and the hiring managers who are looking for new talent. 

We offer four tracks: web development, web design, digital marketing, and sales and account management. Our Core Curriculum brings all four tracks together for hackathons, group projects, and career skills workshops, while individuals engage with staff one-on-one for personalized career mentorship.

The in-class immersive culminates with our signature Talent Expo: an event designed to showcase our graduates in front of a room full of CEOs and hiring managers. You'll take the stage to pitch your own story of growth, ambition, hustle, and agility—in 60 seconds—to this talent-hungry audience, before joining the energized crowd to network and schedule interviews.

Once your immersive program ends, you'll continue to have weekly check-ins with our team for another eight weeks. We'll continue to offer career counseling and job search guidance to support you in reaching your career goals.

You'll also join the ranks of our extensive community of about 1,300 alumni, doing great work at companies around the globe. We're here to support your lifelong career growth with mentorship, specialized programming, and networking events to help you build new connections and find your next steps.

To learn more about what makes us different from other programs, check out the reviews from our alumni on SwitchUp.


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Is Startup Institute a "founder school"?

We are not a school for people who want to found startups. We train action-oriented people who want to build careers they love in innovative companies—we take this mission very seriously, and we do not want to distract from it. If your goal is to start your own company upon graduating Startup Institute, you will not find what you're looking for in our program, as lessons and workshops are focused on supporting the growth of people who are working to change or advance their careers at existing companies in the tech sector.

If you are a founder, we’d love to be in touch about partnership opportunities so you can find the talent your company needs to scale. Check out our hiring partner page, and reach out to us when you’re ready to grow.

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How is the part-time program different from the full-time program?

The part-time program offers the same curriculum and networking opportunities as our full-time program. The difference is in the timeframe and structure that this curriculum is distributed. Our full-time program is our signature product. It’s an immersive and transformative experience for those who want to gain new skills and re-enter the workforce quickly. Classes meet for eight weeks, five days a week. You should expect a 60-80 hour/ week commitment—you will not have time to work a full-time job at the same time as you complete the full-time program. Our part-time program offers working professionals all the benefits of our full-time program without having to quit their job. Classes meet for twelve weeks, two evenings per week, plus two Saturdays a month. You'll complete the same curriculum as the full-time program, but over a longer period of time.

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How do you decide what (and how) to teach?

Our curriculum is always changing according to student feedback and industry needs.

Curriculum is designed to target the in-demand skills and mindset that top business executives and hiring managers are looking for. We ask our partners what they are looking for in new hires and continue to build on these requirements. You’ll complete a weekly survey reviewing your experience so that we can be sure we’re addressing your individual needs. We also use this data to inform planning for our next group of students.

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Why is there a focus on culture skills and emotional intelligence?

Who hasn’t had the experience of working with a technical wiz who has all the brain- power, but none of the social skills to effect change? The fact of the matter is, no one can rely solely on technical skills, higher education, or a fancy résumé. Modern-day career success depends on the intangibles. 

Research shows that people who rate highest in emotional intelligence receive the biggest raises and are promoted most frequently. Our Core Curriculum will prepare you to take on progressive leadership roles with a series of exercises that will challenge you to acknowledge your weaknesses and strengthen your culture skills. 

We want you to understand how you work best with others, so we put a strong emphasis on shaping your clarity around the work you want to be doing, and coaching you to execute on that. We'll help you to figure out what your key values and strengths are so that you can find a great match for your passions and goals.

To learn more about The Core, download our Core Curriculum Syllabus.

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Who are the instructors?

Your instructors are practitioners and entrepreneurs from the innovation sector. They come to you with a range of perspectives, experiences, techniques, specialties, and tools. Many instructors come from our partner companies and are actively scoping our cohorts, seeking new hires. Others are alumni of our full-time program who understand first-hand what skills you need to be able to make an impact from day one, sharing their expertise with new cohorts.

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What does your advisory board do?

Our team of advisors gives us insights into everything from curriculum development to high-growth trends and business strategy. Our advisory board members come to us with variety of industries and causes such as alternative education, entrepreneurship, venture capitalism, talent management, and opportunities for women and people of color.

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How many people will be in my cohort?

We cap our cohorts at 60 people to maintain the intimacy of the group and to ensure that our program participants receive the highest quality experience. Numbers will vary based on the individual students who are accepted into the program each session.

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How many people have been through the program?

We have about 1,300 alumni worldwide. Let us know if you’re interested in speaking to one of them and we’d be happy to connect you. You can also find many of them on LinkedIn by doing a search for "Startup Institute." If you're interested in our program, we recommend that you talk to alumni and read their reviews to make sure we'll be the right fit for your career goals.

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Do I have to quit my job?

You will not be able to work a full-time job while participating in our signature, full-time program. Our part-time program offers the same curriculum as full-time, but meets at nights and on weekends, allowing you to continue to work. No matter which program is right for you, we recommend that you keep some flexibility in your schedule on weeknights because there will be valuable networking opportunities that you won't want to miss.

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How do I find out more information about what's happening at Startup Institute?

We post information about what is happening in our programs on the following platforms:

  • The Whiteboard: Visit the official blog of Startup Institute, and sign up for our weekly digest for tips and tricks for launching, and thriving in, a startup career

  • Follow us on Twitter @StartupInst, or connect with one of our city admissions managers

  • “Like” us on Facebook.

  • See behind-the-scene photos on our Instagram account.

  • Check us out on LinkedIn.

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After Your Program

Is there any information about how graduates do after completing the program?

See our disclosure report and our most recent graduate survey report.

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If I am seeking a new role, will I get hired by the time the program ends?

We don't make promises about when you will get a job, but our numbers speak for themselves. A handful of our students accept job offers before completing the program, and 92% have new jobs within 100 days of completing the program, and 76% within 60 days. While we do not schedule interviews on your behalf, we do support your job search efforts—during and post-program—through mentor sessions and warm introductions to the people you need to know to get to the interview.

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How does Startup Institute support graduates of the full- and part-time programs?

Included in your full- or part-time program is eight weeks of post-graduation career support.

Whether you're seeking a new career after graduation or are looking to advance within your current organization, we'll provide the coaching you need to stay on-track with these goals. Throughout the program, you’ll participate in workshops centered around negotiation skills and etiquette. You’ll also receive weekly personalized mentorship to to discuss your goals and develop action plans to achieve them. Then, once you graduate, you’ll continue to have the dedicated efforts of team at your disposal for an additional eight weeks, offering résumé review, advising you as you negotiate salary or a raise, making warm introductions, or simply as a sounding board as you navigate challenges.

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What kind of jobs do Startup Institute graduates get?

Startup Institute graduates get a wide range of jobs at high-growth companies. Keep in mind that, because graduates end up working in companies ranging from 2 to over 2000 people, titles can be somewhat deceiving in terms of the impact and actual work our alumni do in a company. The list below, however, should give you an idea of the types of positions our graduates land.

  • Web Development: Ruby on Rails Developer, QA Developer, JavaScript Developer, Front-End Developer, UI Engineer, Junior or Senior Software Engineer

  • Web Design: UX Designer, UI Designer, Information Architect, Front-End Developer, Product Manager Associate, Product Manager, Designer, UX Researcher, Program Manager

  • Digital Marketing: Digital Marketing Manager, Content Marketer, Social Media Manager, Director of Marketing, Performance Marketer, Paid Acquisitions Specialist, Marketing Manager, Community Manager

  • Sales & Account Management: Business Development Manager, Business Development Associate, Customer Success Manager, Business Operations Manager, Account Manager, Affiliate Marketing Manager, Director of Customer Relations

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What is it like to be an alumni of Startup Institute?

We love to say that “Startup Institute never ends,” because our team of program staff are always available to offer you career mentorship or make introductions to the people who you need to know. We’re here to support your lifelong career growth.

The "perks" of being a Startup Institute alum include:

Networking Opportunities: As a Startup Institute graduate, you’re always on the guest list. We invite you to participate in networking activities with each new cohort, and we host exclusive alumni events to keep you in constant contact with our partner companies.

Mentorship: Whether you’re negotiating a new job offer or having trouble at work, we’re here to help you navigate any career challenge.

Continued Learning: We’re constantly developing new programming, based on what you tell us you want learn. Whether you want to skill-up with an evening class, participate in online learning, or just want to be inspired, we have a variety of offerings to keep your skill set relevant and in-demand.

The Tent: Our digital alumni platform enables our alumni to connect with each other around the world, post events, get inside access to job opportunities, ask questions, share insights, and learn about exclusive alumni perks. 

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Student Backgrounds and Eligibility

What is the typical student like?

Startup Institute students are collaborative team-players with insatiable curiosity, driven to make a meaningful impact on something bigger than themselves. Some of our students have very clear goals from the moment they walk through our doors, others are still working through those, but all of our students are determined to make an impact on something larger than themselves. 

We're also committed to making the startup community more diverse. We welcome all ages, races, genders, experiences, and perspectives. Since our inaugural class in 2012, 41% of Startup Institute students have been female and 35% students of color.

Download our Admissions Guide to learn more about what we are looking for and how the process works. 

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How old are Startup Institute students?

There are no age restrictions. Historically, Startup Institute's have ranged from 17-65 years old. The average age of a Startup Institute student is 32.

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What percentage of applicants get accepted?

We currently accept around 18% of applicants.

Why are we so competitive?

Our hiring partners work with us because they know they can depend on the quality of talent that they find at Startup Institute. It is important to us to uphold this trust.

Similarly, it is important to us that our students are able to find jobs they love upon finishing our full-time program. For this reason, our admissions process is service-oriented—focused on exploring who you are, what you’re looking to accomplish, and if Startup Institute can help you get there. If we’re not right for you, we won’t move forward with the process—it’s that simple. 

When you speak to one of our admissions specialists, you can expect them to ask you a lot of questions about your goals and interests; they’re trying to figure out if you'll be able to get what you need out of our program and if you'll be able to be successful here.

For a list of the kind of questions that our admissions team asks during interviews, check out our Admissions Guide.

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How would you describe a strong applicant for the full-time program?

Great applicants are adaptable, curious, and intelligent—both intellectually and emotionally. We look for strong communication skills and coachability, as well as bright, ambitious, action-oriented risk-takers who are prepared to tackle our intense curriculum and eager to make a meaningful contribution to a company or cause.

Your strength as an applicant is not determined by your technical skills. During the admissions process, you'll complete a homework to assess your aptitude for this type of work and to ensure that you find enjoyment in it, but don't worry if you're a beginner—we'll have plenty of learning resources to help you get up-to-speed.

For more information about what we're looking for, read this interview with VP of Admissions Katie Bickford.

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Do I have to be a United States citizen?

No, but we do not sponsor or handle any visa-related issues.

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Do you support students in acquiring visas?

We have had many international students come to Startup Institute in the past. Sadly, we do not offer visa support at this time.

The good news is, we have partnered with Migreat.com to provide you with assistance in getting the right visa easily sorted. Migreat is completely free to use: in a few clicks, their visa tool will give you an idea of the visa for which you are eligible and a to-do list of documents you'll need. If you need additional help, Migreat acts as the Airbnb for immigration resources - they have a huge rolodex of online of immigration attorneys that fit all types of budget and visa types, should you need a personal consultation. You can ask them to refer you to an expert to complete your visa application directly on the platform.

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Application Process

If I apply, do I have to do the program?

No. Applying to Startup Institute simply means having a conversation. One of our admissions specialists will schedule a call with you to answer all of your questions and help you to explore if Startup Institute is right for you. 

As a company, our mission is to build an inspired workforce. Still, we know that the innovation sector isn't equally inspiring for everyone. This is why our admissions process is service-oriented. The role of our admissions team is to help all of our applicants find clarity around their career goals and confusion, whether or not they decide that Startup Institute is right for them.

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What is the difference between the application deadlines?

Pricing is the only differetiator between our three application deadlines. The earlier you apply, the lower the cost of the program for that season.

These are the deadlines and pricing for our winter 2017 program (February 13 - April 7, 2017):

Application Deadline 1: November 21, 2016—$9,100

Application Deadline 2: December 12, 2016—$9,300

Application Deadline 3: January 23, 2017—$9,500

For more information on tuition, visit our tuition page.

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Are there any technical prerequisites or required skills for applicants to be accepted to Startup Institute?

No—whether you’re a novice or you already have some experience, we’ll provide you with learning resources to ensure you are introduced to the fundamentals of your chosen track before the start of the program. We encourage beginners to apply at least six weeks before the program start date to ensure you have ample time to take full advantage of our preparatory resources.

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Can I apply to the program in any of your cities?

Yes! You are welcome to apply to any city. We recommend choosing a city that you can see yourself living in, because the network you'll develop there as a participant in our full-time program will be worth sticking around for.

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How do I figure out which track is right for me?

This is part of the process. If you're unsure, our admissions team can work with you to figure out which track is the best fit for your interests, strengths, and ambitions. You don't need to decide right away, and you can change your track at any time up to the start of the program by consulting with your admissions representative.

Unfortunately, you can't enroll in more than one track during the program. The in-track curriculum includes intensives and lab work, and you will not have the time or bandwidth to “double major.” Download our comprehensive Program Guide to learn more about the coursework in each track—this will help you decide which track to enroll in. Or, submit an application to start a conversation with a member of our admissions team about where you'd best fit.

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What does the application process for the full- and part-time programs look like?

Our  admissions process is all about exploration—both for you and our admissions team. First, submit your online application. The next step involves a series of Skype interviews with a member of our admissions team. You'll be asked questions about your background, passions, goals, and fears—these are meant to help you and our admissions representatives figure out if our program is a fit for you. 

After your admissions interview, you'll be asked to complete a homework assignment to demonstrate your current skill level, show us how you think, and to help you decide if the track you've applied for is going to be something you're interested in and excited about learning. If you're totally new to this area of study, not to worry—we have plenty of online learning resources to help you to see how you like the lesson material and so that you can skill-up before your program begins.

The final step is an interview with the program director in your city of interest. This conversation is meant to determine if you'll be a cultural fit for the specific cohort in that city.

For more information on each of these steps, read this interview about our admissions process.

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If I'm not accepted to the full- or part-time program, what are my other options?

If you applied to the web development, web design, or digital marketing tracks, you may consider building your skill set in one of our fundamental skills classes. Once you complete the fundamentals class, you may be a perfect candidate for the full- or part-time programs.

Our fundamental skills classes include:

  • Intro to Web Design

  • Intro to Ruby

  • Intro to JavaScript

  • Intro to Digital Marketing

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Are there financing options?

Yes. Financing is available through Climb and Skills Fund. We have three payment options in total:

1. Low Cost & Simple: pay upfront

This is the most straightforward, low-cost option.

2. Split It: pay half upfront, half later

Pay half of your tuition before the first day of classes, and the remaining half before your last day. In this case, your tuition plus an additional $150 administrative fee is paid in two equal installments.

3. Take More Time: finance your tuition

We've partnered with third party lenders to provide you with a variety of options to finance your education. Choose to pay over 12 to 36 months at a competitive interest rate. Financing options differ in each market and are only available to students who commit to our full-time program. You must be a US citizen to apply for financing.

For more payment information, visit the tuition page on our website.

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Can I get a refund if I decide to leave the full- or part-time program after it starts?

Refunds are available within the first five weeks of the program. For specific information about our refund policy, please refer to the regulatory section of our website.

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Refund Policy and Regulatory Information

What’s the refund policy?

If a committed student decides to terminated before the program starts, a full tuition refund, minus the registration fee, is made. The schedule for refunds after the beginning of the program can be found in the student enrollment agreement.

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As an enrolled student, how do I submit a complaint?

Formal complaints maybe be submitted to: feedback@startupinstitute.com.

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Fundamental Skills Classes

How are your fundamental skills classes different from the full- and part-time programs?

Our fundamental skills classes are introductory courses in coding, web design, or digital marketing. These classes meet for two and a half hours, once a week, for eight weeks. In between sessions, lab assignments will build on your learning goals and instructors are available to connect online and answer your questions. It is truly a community-driven learning experience, designed to move at your pace. 

Fundamental Skills Classes:

  • Intro to Web Design

  • Intro to Ruby

  • Intro to JavaScript

  • Intro to Digital Marketing

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How do you decide what to teach in the fundamental skills classes?

Curriculum is designed to build foundations for the in-demand skills that high-growth companies are looking for. The classes are shaped and delivered by industry professionals who use these skills in their jobs everyday. You’ll complete surveys reviewing your class experience so that we can be sure we’re addressing your individual needs. We also use this data to inform planning for our next group of student—Intro to JavaScript, for example, was started due to demand from our alumni.

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I am brand new to web development and/or web design. Are the fundamental skills classes right for me?

All classes are designed for beginners. Depending on your interests and learning goals, you can sign up for Ruby, JavaScript, or web design classes and feel comfortable knowing that these classes will support you as you learn at your own pace.

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Who are the instructors?

Instructors are industry practitioners. They come to you with a range of perspectives, experiences, techniques, specialties, and tools. Many instructors are alumni of our full-time program who are successful developers, designers, and marketers in the tech ecosystem.

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What is the level of commitment?

You can expect a workload of approximately 5-8 hours a week, with 2.5 hours in person.

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Can I have a job and still do these classes?

Yes—our fundamental skills classes are designed to work around your schedule, so in-person instruction is only once a week, while online resources and support are available to you each day.

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Can I take the course online?

No, at this time, you have to be in New York or Boston to participate.

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If I complete the fundamental skills classes, can I then apply to the full- or part-time program?

Yes, many students who have taken these classes have gone on to complete our full- or part-time programs.

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Will the fundamental skills classes fully prepare me for the web design or development tracks in the full- or part-time programs? Will the material in the full- or part-time programs be repetitive if I've already completed the classes?

Our fundamental skills classes prepare students to be strong applicants for our full- and part-time programs. The full- and part-time programs will build upon the skills that you learned in this introductory course, while also helping you to develop clarity around your career goals as you build a powerful network.

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What is the enrollment process?

Register on the website and submit your payment information. All payment must be submitted one week before the program’s start date. A week before you start, you will also receive an introductory e-mail from your instructor(s). They will give you access to the labs, invite you to join the online discussion forum, and if applicable, they'll invite you to the first session where you will set up your dev environment.

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Where do you run fundamental skills classes?

  • Boston: 50 Milk St, 15th Floor, Boston, MA 02109

  • New York: 25 Broadway, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10004

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How would you describe a strong applicant for the fundamental skills classes?

Our fundamental skills classes are not application-based. If you are driven, self-motivated, and eager to dive into web development, design, or digital marketing, you should sign-up. Beginners are welcome!

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Can I get a refund if I decide to leave a class after it starts?

Tuition includes a $50 registration fee which is forfeited with any cancelation. Cancellations prior to the session start date will receive a full refund, with the exception of this application fee. Once the class has begun, cancelations will receive a pro-rated refund based on the week the refund request is received—again, minus the registration fee.

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Upcoming in

Full Time Program

June 19 to August 11, 2017

Deadline 1:Apr 10, 2017$9,100

Deadline 2:May 08, 2017$9,300

Deadline 3:Jun 05, 2017$9,500

Part Time Program

May 20 to August 12, 2017

Deadline 1:Feb 27, 2017$9,100

Deadline 2:Mar 20, 2017$9,300

Deadline 3:Apr 24, 2017$9,500

Fundamental Skills Classes

Full Time Program

June 19 to August 11, 2017

Deadline 1:Apr 10, 2017$9,100

Deadline 2:May 08, 2017$9,300

Deadline 3:Jun 05, 2017$9,500

Part Time Program

May 20 to August 12, 2017

Deadline 1:Feb 27, 2017$9,100

Deadline 2:Mar 20, 2017$9,300

Deadline 3:Apr 24, 2017$9,500

Fundamental Skills Classes