I’ve never heard of Jim McKelvey before I read today’s article about him in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Odds are good I’ll never meet him. But I’d like to thank him for launching LaunchCode and I hope his new startup has amazing success – because if it succeeds, that bodes well for St. Louis.
The premise behind LaunchCode is a simple one. Pair an experienced code writer with an inexperienced one and put them on the same project at a participating company.
There are currently 100 St. Louis companies that have chosen to participate in this venture. What they do is when an open job comes up, they agree to take on an inexperienced code writer and pair them up with one of their experienced developers until the newbie is up to speed and receives a full-time job. The newbie is paid a true intern rate – while they develop the skills that go beyond mere programming, participating in project meetings and taking responsibility for their work while learning all the steps that go into the coding process.
Simple, right? So simple, that you wonder why it hasn’t been done before and to a degree, it has – that’s what internship programs are all about. But it’s never been a joint effort with multiple companies participating throughout one city focused on one simple task – writing code. It benefits the company. It benefits the individuals who participate, ramping them up to speed quicker and benefits the overall talent pool in this area.
LaunchCode is a volunteer effort. It was started to help expand the talent pool of code writers in the St. Louis area which is critical in attracting major players in the technology arena to this area. The more companies who sign on with LaunchCode here in St. Louis, the more jobs it will help create. The more jobs it helps create, the more attractive the region becomes to companies thinking of moving here that have major technology needs.
Good job, Jim McKelvey.
You got the ball rolling. Let’s hope more St. Louis companies jump on board.
Let’s Grow St. Louis.