Coding schools aim to fill tech job demand

As demand grows for computer programers, accelerated programs to teach coding is a booming industry. But these schools are largely unregulated leading many to question if they are as effectively as obtaining a traditional degree in computer science.

MIAMI, FLORIDA (REUTERS) - Welcome to boot camp.

These students in South Florida hope that in just 10 weeks they'll know enough about computer coding to get a job.

Schools like this are popping up all over the country. It's a boom industry - but it's also controversial. Many students don't have university degrees, just passion and hopefully aptitude.

Walter Latimer, 24, is a success story: two years ago he was an arts school drop-out who learned he was HIV positive.

"It was definitely the 'All right, time to get your act together moment'," said Latimer.

Walter signed up for an intensive coding course at Wyncode, graduated, and is now a product manager at an education company in Silicon Valley. He says technology moves so fast that universities can't keep up, but coding schools can.

"There is a really great opportunity for people who maybe don't have that traditional schooling, or get into the top schools, but have it in them to really succeed because it really is more merit based at this point," said Latimer.

Coding schools are largely unregulated and quality varies, but Wyncode is one of the few that have pledged to be transparent about student employment rates and staff qualifications.

"We look for realtime feedback from all of our hiring partners and we ask those 100 partners what is the technology you need these individuals to know and learn," said Johanna Mikkola, co-founder and managing director of Wyncode Academy.

Some employers are still reluctant to hire from coding schools rather than universities - building credibility will be important if these students are to get the jobs they hope for.