Thinkful, an online coding program with an IRL presence in D.C., recently closed on $9.6 million in Series A funding.
The company focuses on teaching tech skills to students outside the main tech hubs, drawing on a network of 300 software developers and data scientists who provide mentoring through an online-based curriculum.
D.C. is one of six cities where the company is seeking out employers for its grads and running events and programming. (Interestingly, that list of cities excludes Brooklyn, where the company is based.) CEO Darrell Silver said the events are geared toward a mix of current and prospective students. Silver said having the on-the-ground presence helps increase the number of students participating by 10x.
A year after expanding into D.C., Thinkful served 100 local students, including 40 who are currently enrolled.
With the new funding, the company is looking to expand the number of events it runs within the DMV. Silver said the idea is to have events be within a 20-minute trip of a prospective or current student. So the expansion brings a goal to “have events in every part of the community.” That reach is one of the elements that Silver believes sets it apart from other bootcamps, along with cost and training while remaining employed.
“The whole premise of Thinkful is to be able to reach people where they are both in their life and their location,” as well as fitting into their schedule and budget, he said.
After a recent hire which brought the local team to four people, the company will also look to add further team members in the coming months.
The funding round was led by Owl Ventures, with participation from Tribeca Venture Partners.
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