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Must-Have Skills Tech Students Need Before Graduating

How do you deliver professional, high quality, easy-to-maintain code to your customers and clients if your team doesn’t even know what professional, high quality, easy-to-maintain code really means? You don’t! It’s essential to take the time to train your junior developers to understand what being a professional developer entails, and not all senior developers are […]

by | Feb 03, 2020

How do you deliver professional, high quality, easy-to-maintain code to your customers and clients if your team doesn’t even know what professional, high quality, easy-to-maintain code really means? You don’t! It’s essential to take the time to train your junior developers to understand what being a professional developer entails, and not all senior developers are cut out for mentorship. It takes patience and a willingness to experiment. At Exelaration, we utilize experiential learning opportunities through our apprenticeship-based program to ensure students have hands-on experience building software for real-world clients.

Here are three fundamental skills that future tech professionals need to master by graduation:

  • Professional Coding

Have you ever hired a handyman to fix something in your home only for them to track mud through your house and leave a sloppy final product? All you wanted was for them treat your home improvement like it was their own personal project. At Exelaration, we own our projects, starting with fully understanding and empathizing with our clients’ challenges.

We build on industry best practices such as design patterns, unit tests, and advanced architecture principles like dependency inversion that allows our code to quickly scale and grow to provide solutions. Every day, our interns develop code that solves actual tech problems for our clients. Our interns learn the full code stack from the user interface down to the database. They see how the code is architected and understand it. They are taught best practices from senior mentors while being trusted to code on actual deliverables. Most importantly, students always give and receive code reviews. They not only expect constructive feedback, they thrive on it and understand its essential to be continually iterating to create the best possible product. Feedback is seen as an opportunity, not a punishment, with one goal in mind: deliver professional code and service to our clients.

  • Tools (Git, Code Editors, DevOps, etc.)

You wouldn’t crack an egg with a hammer. Different tasks require different tools, and picking the right one is critical. Software is no different. A great example of this is learning Git, a source control versioning tool that tracks every change to our code similarly to Microsoft Word’s “tracked changes” feature. Exelaration interns learn code versioning techniques, allowing our students to use the tools rather than fighting the tools. Exelaration students can identify the difference between a Code Editor and an IDE (Integrated Development Environment).  They learn what DevOps is and how to automate the delivery of code from their computer to a production server. Students understand the right tools can help their code not only function correctly, but also become more readable and easier to maintainable long term. 80% of software cost is spent maintaining existing code versus writing new code. This is why professional, maintainable code is so important!

  • Agile Methodologies

Even the most impressive code is useless if it’s not what the client asked for or needs. All Exelaration students earn a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) certificate while working with us. Interns work on Agile teams and understand the difference between Scrum and Kanban. They learn how to work on a team not only with each other, but also to communicate professionally with customers and clients. The most important lesson in Agile? How to seek continuous improvement. Many of the country’s top tech employers not only prefer that students are comfortable working in an Agile environment; they expect it (we see you, Google, Microsoft, and Pepsi).


What About Life After Graduation?

Did you know that it takes the typical college graduate an average of three months to find employment following matriculation? It’s no wonder that 100% of Exelaration interns have gainful employment lined up before they even graduate. Our students join the workforce with years of experience under their belt, skipping over the typical (and often dreaded) “entry-level” employment period. They’re ready to thrive as skillful developers in a professional environment from day one.

Ready to connect with your future job-ready workforce? Email us at info@exelaration.com.

Allen.Tuggle@exelaration.com

Allen Tuggle is an Agile-enthusiast and software development mentor. He has more than 20 years of experience in the software industry, and as the VP of Client Engagement & Delivery at Exelaration, he coaches young professionals in the art of dazzling clients by producing and delivering high-quality software.

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