#85: Michael Ellison – CEO of CodePath.org, Helping Engineers Advance their Careers

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Michael Ellison is currently the Chief Operating Officer of CodePath where he leads product, operations, and business development.

CodePath is an education technology startup that has a reputation for excellence in training engineers with the skills that they need for cutting-edge tech jobs.

Running for four years now, CodePath has worked with over 850 of the top tech companies. Not to mention, they’re the most popular Android resource on the Internet with over 20,000 startups and over 500,000 developers using their resource every month. They’ve also helped redesigned onboarding programs for companies like Facebook and Airbnb, of which 25% of their engineers have been taught by their program.

Recently, they launched CodePath.org that is powering under-searched schools with coding curriculum. Presently, they’ve worked with over 30 schools and 1,200 students.


Years in Tech 5
Lives In: San Francisco
Current Job CEO
Date Recorded 11/6/2017

Show Notes:

[03:17] Breaking Into Tech: Michael explains how he got involved with creating CodePath, in the hope of providing high quality free education for engineers – and what makes it unique!

[07:25] CodePath’s vision: To help more people break into the tech world opposed to just having luck or a family background of engineers to get their foot in the door.

[09:50] Who will benefit from CodePath and a notable list of their past students. Did you know that CodePath is offered for free? Here’s why.

[12:28] Here’s a simple visual of the CodePath structure and curriculum. Michael shares the secret of people getting into the course and one of the biggest issues they’ve seen in the valley.

[15:00] Making hiring decisions:  Find out as Michael talks about the false positives vs. false negatives and how they’re working on raising the hiring bar

[19:00] Michael shares his thoughts on “junior engineers,” why great engineers aren’t always ending up in the top spots, and running the Facebook University internship program

[22:42] A Need for Diversity: Michael reveals that 80% of students from underrepresented groups that start a CS degree are not able to complete.

[25:34] Earlier programs were not as diverse but are getting more and more money preventing new startups from getting ahead of the game. Code Path seeks to open the door for the average person to also have a shot at making it within the tech world.

[30:58] Hiring Strategies: Michael outlines what companies are looking for when recruiting as well as the need to find a better way to assess potential engineers.

[34:40] Find out which data points CodePath is looking at for tracking someone’s ability to perform on the job and some qualitative things they’re looking for in applicants.

[40:33] Michael talks about this new, more affordable program he has created to ensure this is the best course students have taken.
[43:35] What you can expect from CodePath over the new few years: scaling the business, working more with schools, and helping out universities set up CS programs.

Contact Info:

Michael Ellison

Website: CodePath

LinkedIn Profile: www.linkedin.com/in/michaelwellison

Twitter Profile: https://twitter.com/michaelwellison

Email: michael@codepath.com

Articles & Mentioned Resources:

Learning Resources


Women Who Code

Facebook University

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