September 20, 2022

Athennian: Supporting Next Gen Coders with Our Lighthouse Labs Scholarship

Athennian produces next-generation compliance, transaction, and auditing solutions for entities operating within the legal sector. Our organization helps law firms and corporate legal teams replace manual processes and antiquated on-premises software with cloud-based alternatives. 

Available Athennian technology assists with everything from governance to tax document preparation and more. Our clients gain access to this dynamic array of functions from a single, user-friendly interface. 

As a trailblazer in the software development space, Athennian is constantly looking for ways to connect with up-and-coming development students. This pursuit led Athennian to partner with Lighthouse Labs (LHL), Canada’s premier coding bootcamp. 

Athennian's co-founders are proud to have launched a scholarship opportunity for current students and aspiring Lighthouse Labs cohorts. While the program is relatively new, it is already making a big impact on students, Athennian, and the community at large.

During a recent in-house interview, we sat down with long-time Athennian member Shane Fast. As part of Athennian’s security and DevOps department, Shane understands the importance of having skilled coding professionals on our team.

Shane has also been heavily involved in the scholarship program, including the recipient selection process. As such, he was able to provide some great insights about the program and why Athennian chose to back this particular educator.

What Is Lighthouse Labs?

Lighthouse Labs was founded in 2013 and exists as a “coding bootcamp.” Instead of using a traditional, multi-year education model, Lighthouse Labs focuses on providing expedited learning opportunities to those interested in coding. 

The company was created by software developers passionate about mentoring the next generation of coding professionals. 

According to LHL’s website, the organization has helped more than 2,700 graduates step into developer careers. A staggering 40,000 Canadians have participated in Lighthouse Labs' various programs. 

Lighthouse Labs’ Programs

Lighthouse Labs offers eight different programs. In the past, these programs have been offered either online or in person. However, the team is currently only offering online courses. Lighthouse Labs’ courses include:

  • Web Development Bootcamp
  • Data Science Bootcamp
  • Web Development Flex Program
  • Intro to Web Development
  • Intro to Front-End with Javascript
  • Intro to Data Analytics
  • Data Analytics for HR 101
  • Cyber Security Bootcamp

Of these programs, the Data Analytics course is the shortest, lasting just four days. The longest LHL course is the Web Development Flex Program, which lasts 30 weeks. 

Lighthouse Labs’ three bootcamp programs are the company’s most popular and last 12 weeks each. These intensive, fast-paced courses are designed to prepare students to step into technical roles and start earning competitive salaries in short order.

About the Scholarship Program

The Athennian scholarship program is designed to offset some of the costs associated with tuition. This scholarship is currently available for the developer and developer flex programs. 

During each application period, potential candidates must submit requested documents and attend an interview with Athennian staff members. Athennian will then select three applicants to receive scholarship awards. 

Since the scholarship program is in its infancy, most applicants learn about it via word of mouth. Athennian and the LHL faculty inform students and applicants about the scholarship program. However, Athennian is currently developing outward-facing materials to draw more attention to the program. 

Why Athennian’s Co-Founder's Chose Lighthouse Labs

When deciding to create a scholarship program, the team (Adrian Camara, Andrew Dravucz, Mark Tinana, Shane Fast, Josh Malate) wanted to make sure that they were choosing the right partner. Each co-founder brought each their own talents to the table. Andrew Dravucz’s rock solid consistency, Mark Tinana’s keen attention to details, Shane Fast’s creativity, Josh Malate’s coordination, and Adrian Camara’s vision. However, every team (no matter how well balanced) needs as much technical grit and knowhow as possible, of which the talent LHL was able to provide gave us exactly what was needed to create a fantastic product, a marvellous development process, and the team of our dreams! Shane Fast stated in the interview "our gratitude to the LHL grads who chose to join our team is hard to put into words, but we hope this scholarship in part expresses these hopes and feelings". This scholarship is backed personally by the co-founders of Athennian and they decided to support LHL because they felt they could: 

Give Back to the Community

Athennian is passionate about giving back. The organization wanted to support up-and-coming developers and fuel continued growth in the software industry. 

The team at Athennian is already exploring ways to expand the Lighthouse Labs scholarship program. For instance, the company is testing a scholarship benefits package that will be awarded to recent grads, not incoming cohorts. 

This approach allows Athennian to assist aspiring developers and those who have already demonstrated enough proficiency to successfully complete the LHL program. 

Support an Exceptional Program

Speaking of Lighthouse Labs, the program is undoubtedly one of a kind. During the interview, Fast praised the program for being “better for students” when compared to other programs. 

He elaborated by explaining that LHL prepares students by equipping them with real-world technical skills that they will use every day. He further stated that LHL provides students with plenty of opportunities to gain “direct technology experience.” 

Connect with Talented Students

Lastly, and most importantly, the scholarship program provides Athennian with an opportunity to connect with talented developers at the start of their careers. When asked how the students from LHL have impacted Athennian, Fast stated that “Athennian has benefited greatly from the quality of students that graduate from LHL.” 

He also revealed that Athennian has hired “many students” from Lighthouse Labs and credits them with helping the company “become what we are today.” 

Athennian had made a practice of hiring Lighthouse Labs’ students long before the scholarship program was created. This reality is a testament to the program's quality and its faculty's dedication. 

Future Plans for the Program

Fast and Athennian have big plans for the Lighthouse Labs scholarship program. Currently, the company is experimenting with post-graduate scholarship offers. Depending on the outcome of these experiments, the company will likely allocate additional funds to the program.

In addition, Athennian has plans to fund more scholarships for incoming cohorts. This funding will be used to either increase the value of current scholarships, award funds to more applications, or a combination thereof. 

LHL’s Impact on Athennian

Lighthouse Labs has undoubtedly made a major impact on the trajectory of Athennian. The scholarship program provides the company an opportunity to return the favor while simultaneously giving back to the community and bolstering organizational culture. 

Moving forward, Athennian plans to spread the word about the scholarship program in order to attract more applicants. Fast and other organizational members will work to refine the application process and nurture the program to optimize its efficacy. 

No matter what the future holds for the Lighthouse Labs scholarship program, it will continue to be an integral component of Athennian’s talent development and community outreach strategy.