In recent years, tech bootcamps have skyrocketed in popularity—and it’s clear why. These intensive, short-term programs are ideal for working professionals looking to gain in-demand technical skills without pausing their careers.
Compared to traditional degree programs, tech bootcamps offer lower tuition, shorter completion times, and various support services, making them an attractive option for full-time workers. However, even with all these benefits, attending bootcamp while working full-time requires a high degree of planning, commitment, and determination.
Here are six tips to help you balance your full-time job while attending a tech bootcamp.
1. Find the Right Program For You
Successfully balancing bootcamp with a full-time role starts with finding a program that aligns with your career goals and can accommodate your busy schedule. When evaluating bootcamps, consider the schedule, program length, and instruction mode to determine which program best fits into your life and learning style.
Some bootcamps, like those offered by Cal Poly Extended Ed Tech Bootcamps, offer a part-time bootcamp with multiple class time scheduling options for their online programs to create flexible learning opportunities. You can better manage work, bootcamp, and other life commitments by choosing a program that accommodates your individual needs.
2. Manage Your Time Wisely
For many working students, time management is one of the biggest challenges. It’s essential to prioritize your responsibilities and create a realistic schedule. Set up a study space and dedicate time each day to uninterrupted study. Designate out-of-office (OOO) time blocks on your work calendar and silence notifications during class so your co-workers know not to contact you.
Be sure to make time for personal commitments like exercise and family activities. Keeping a detailed schedule of your priorities will help you stay organized and prevent you from feeling overwhelmed. It’ll also allow you to maintain a healthy work-life balance.
3. Communicate Your Needs
Having open lines of communication with your support system is vital to success both in bootcamp and at work. Before you start bootcamp, talk to your supervisor about any concerns to devise a strategy for balancing your responsibilities. Plus, discussing your career development goals with your supervisor shows initiative and may lead to educational benefits or tuition reimbursements through your company.
If you can, meet with your instructor or student advisor. Let them know you’re planning on working full-time while attending bootcamp. They may be able to provide some additional tips and resources to help you better balance your time.
Finally, share your plans with your family and friends. Let them know you have a lot on your plate and may not be as available. This will help set healthy boundaries and prevent hurt feelings.
4. Practice Self-Care
Juggling work and bootcamp can be exhausting, so prioritizing your mental and physical well-being is necessary. To prevent burnout, make time each day for relaxation, hobbies, and other activities. This way, you’ll have an opportunity to recharge outside of bootcamp and work.
Consider doing daily or weekly check-ins to gauge your well-being and what you need to do to be your best self. What you’re accomplishing is challenging, and giving yourself a break is okay!
5. Build a Supportive Community
Whether you could use extra accountability to help you study, require assistance on a work project, or have a question about a concept you’re learning, you’ll need support. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your co-workers, instructors, family, or friends.
Surround yourself with a community of people who believe in you and will be there for you as you work to take the next step in your career. A supportive environment can minimize stress and allow you to put your best foot forward at work and in bootcamp.
6. Remember the Bigger Picture
When balancing multiple priorities, it’s important to remember why you’re working so hard in the first place. Whether your goal is to upskill or transition into a new career, your “why” will remind you of the commitment you made to yourself and help keep you motivated—even on the toughest of days.
Make Your Move.
Take the first step in your journey by learning more about the immersive tech bootcamps at Cal Poly Extended Ed Tech Bootcamps Powered by Fullstack Academy.
Succeeding at Work and In Bootcamp
Attending a bootcamp can be a rigorous and challenging experience, but balancing bootcamp while working full-time is possible. With a solid plan, a strong support system, and the right mindset, you can thrive in bootcamp without putting your career on the back burner. Remember, balancing work and education isn’t easy, and you should be proud of your progress toward your career goals.
Cal Poly Extended Education offers live online bootcamps with full-time and part-time options, allowing you to fit your educational goals into your busy life. Ready to kickstart a rewarding career in tech? Apply today!