How Bootcamps Can Make You a Better Designer

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Many graphic designers are capable of creating an aesthetically-pleasing website or a mind-blowing user experience. But not everyone gets to practice their craft beyond their natural talent, in a client-driven setting that simulates real life challenges.

So whether you’re focused on UI, UX or graphic design, attending a full-stack design bootcamp is a great way to fast-track your skills and career trajectory. Plus, there are a variety of benefits to attending a bootcamp, some of which are obvious, but some are less so. Here are a few of the key points to consider:

Content

Access to quality content is an obvious benefit of enrolling in a bootcamp, and certainly the one that most designers have at the forefront of their minds. No more combing through tutorial sites and asking friends or mentors for advice. A bootcamp saves you a lot of legwork by directly connecting you with the information you need to grow your skillset.

Practice

At DESIGNATION, we have a motto: Fail early and often, because you learn more from failure than from success. Simply put, an educational environment is a place you can fail productively, creating progressively better and better work in a supportive, nurturing environment. In this way, by the time you come out the other end, you’re a lean, mean designing machine, carving your path through the professional landscape with a casual flick of your pen tool.

Fail early and often, because you learn more from failure than from success.

Mentorship

We all like to believe in the myth of the gifted genius, the person born already knowing everything they need to do brilliant work. But in reality, this type of person doesn’t actually exist. We all need the mentorship and support of those who came before us and know more than we do now. The best bootcamps will connect you with fantastic mentors both from within the program and externally as well. That’s why all DESIGNATION students are paired with a mentor from outside the program midway through the cohort.

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Networking

What good is learning a new set of skills if it doesn’t land you a job? That’s why it’s essential to consider a bootcamp’s placement rate before you enroll. If this number falls below 90% or is unpublished, that’s a red flag that you may want to take your talents elsewhere. In addition to job placement, the network of designers you build by virtue of your peers in the program is not to be overlooked. These will be your coworkers and collaborators at future jobs. And one when of them moves to a new company that’s still growing, who do you think they’ll call to help fill those positions?

What good is learning a new set of skills if it doesn’t land you a job?

Collaboration and Accountability

One of the more subtle benefits of graphic design bootcamp is the weight of personal accountability. For most people, it’s very difficult to stay committed and passionate about learning something new when there’s no accountability. Without structure or consequences, most people simply just don’t see their work through to completion. Bootcamps put you in a situation where you know you’ll have to present work you’re proud of and defend it to instructors and peers alike.

There’s also a certain magic about doing work in a room full of people that are all passionate about the exact same thing you are. There’s a special chemistry to that experience that completely changes your emotional relationship to the work itself. Bonds you form in this workshop series can last years, and may prove invaluable to you in the future.

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Making the leap to a specialized bootcamp may be the most important decision of your career. But understand that it’s not just about quality content. If that’s all that mattered, YouTube and other paid content libraries like Lynda would be all you need.

Instead, bootcamps are places to truly transform your skillset and career opportunities by providing an environment that best sets you up for success. DESIGNATION has made a dedicated effort to directly provide for all of these attributes in our advanced full-stack immersive design bootcamp, which has directly led to the continued and repeated success of our alums. Learn more about them and their stories by reading interviews on our blog.

And to find out if DESIGNATION is right for you, email Will at will@designation.io.

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