PrePlay Professional Development

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This summer, Will and Tom participated in the General Assembly Front End Development class as a part of our professional development program at PrePlay. PrePlay employees are encouraged to pursue opportunities outside the office to diversify their skill set and follow their interests to help grow our business. Take a read below to learn about their experiences in the class.

Will:
For the first time in my life, school didn’t suck. 

It all started when we thought we were restricted to sending plain emails through our email service. Then I hit “view source”. Three months later, I can make a snazzy front-end website.

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The GA class “Front End Web Development” teaches the fundamentals at a fast pace. HTML, CSS, and Javascript. From easiest to hardest. Javascript still makes my head hurt when I try to write a function from scratch.

Ultimately, what GA does is provide a set of tools in a short period of time. The instructors are knowledgeable and the vibe is very cool.

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…almost too cool. 

Tom does a better job breaking down the nuts and bolts of the course (see below), so I’ll leave you with this: GA dispels the myth that you have to be a genius to know about web development. It’s learnable.

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The GA Web Development Immersive! 

Tom:
I first heard about General Assembly a few years ago when it was just a community for entrepreneurs and startup companies with one location in the flatiron district. Now General Assembly is a top educational institution that transforms thinkers into creators through education in technology, business, and design at nine campuses across three continents. After hearing about an assortment of classes that they offer in the early Summer, I was very eager to see what it was all about and grow my professional skills to better suit PrePlay. I spent the next 10 weeks diving into html, css, javascript, and jquery as a student in their Front End Web Development class here in Manhattan.

There truly is no better way of learning than doing and that’s what my course was all about. On the first day I coded my first website and felt like a true boss… Then things got harder as we discussed responsive designs and grid layouts but, all in all, html made a lot of sense. Then to css- this was definitely my favorite part of the course. To me css is like coding your code… wonderful shortcuts to make life easier. Finally, we reached javascript and jquery- I definitely had the most difficulty with these two languages. However, the more we covered the more I saw how I could really use both to mask my novice skills as somewhat professional. Both are so “in” right now in the tech field and really help developers take their creations to the next level via animations, scrolling features, sprites, etc. You’ll be able to check out our next level work on the new and improved website when it launches soon!

Other than the languages themselves, the greatest takeaway from the course was that there are so many different ways to code the same thing, and there are so many ways to screw up. Throughout my ten weeks I wasn’t just learning to code but also sharpening my workflow. Planning and organization are essential.

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