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Code and Coding: Where to Find Help in Los Angeles?

As you are likely aware if you’re from L.A., some 375 miles up the road lies Silicon Valley. Here, tech dreams come true, app ideas flourish into billion dollar corporations, and some of the most powerful tech companies in the world – Facebook, Apple, Google, to name a few – recruit smart and talented individuals to assist in shaping their bright future. It’s an attractive destination for anyone with ambitions in the industry, and you may want a slice of the action yourself. But before diving in and making the pilgrimage, you’d best hone your skills – learning to code in particular.

Then again, from our inception we nurtured the link between Singapore and SoCal, or Orange County to be precise. And Silicon Beach, located north of LAX does have plenty to offer. Should you wish to pursue a career in marketing or design and still live the American dream in Silicon Valley, but to say you have coding experience, even if it’s attending a workshop, could well be the deal breaker between you and thousands of other candidates. Therefore, this is about letting you know where in Los Angeles you can go, should you wish to wrap your head around how coding works.

While it’s true that many of today’s website building packages, particularly those that focus on eCommerce avoid the need to know HTML or CSS, this is still not a green light to shun any basic coding knowledge. For those who wish to enter the tech realm in Silicon Valley, much of this information can be gained online. If you want a more hands-on learning experience and to see how your coding skills shape up against others in real life, then there are plenty of events available. Think you know Java, Python, C++, and PHP like the back of your hand? Then see if any of the following events or meetups are for you. Learning to code even received support from the iconic fashion brand Versace.

Similar to Cubetto teaching coding at a young age, CoderDojo (for 7-18 years of age) has been hosting regular workshops since 2012, focusing on programming languages like Scratch, as well as basic web development and creation of mobile apps. Best of all, the sessions are completely free and taught by skilled volunteers in the industry. With coding becoming such a useful skill to learn for the future, CoderDojo took it upon themselves to broaden and enhance the abilities of the next generation.

For something with a little more competition and sense of urgency, be sure to look into the 24-hour coding challenge CodeDay. Scheduled for November 12-13, CodeDay is an event taking place in Los Angeles, whereby students have the chance to build apps and games for one whole day. At the end of the day, knowing or at least understanding how to code is an essential skill for the 21st Century. No matter your skill, everyone can get involved and learn with workshops and from knowledgeable mentors at the venue. Regardless of from what nation you come from, you’d be surprised to learn that Finland instituted coding from the day one in the elementary school.

Just like how any major company started, you bring an idea to the table, pitch it to a group, and if it gets the green light then your team can get to work on creating an app in 24 hours. Oh, and many people sleep there overnight too!

If you’re already working a job or studying, but feel like your true calling is coding, then going along to meetup groups can introduce you to many similar minded people. hosts a fantastic group called Learn To Code L.A.. With over 4,000 active members, the meetup group has many different events each week, some based on coding topics like JavaScript and Python. Everyone from total beginners to coding ninjas are said to be welcome at the events, at which you can break off into small groups and receive feedback on your work, as well as learning new skills and industry tricks of the trade. By attending such meetups and events, you can firstly see if coding is in fact something that you’d like to pursue and then have the chance to gain contacts and confidence in the world of coding.