Posts about Other

How to Craft Your Elevator Pitch

November 16, 2015

An elevator pitch is a brief and persuasive sales pitch, something you could start and close during the duration of an elevator ride. You can use elevator pitches for all sorts of things, like your flashy startup idea or your new dog walking business, but in our bootcamps, we focus on people’s personal elevator pitches. These are the 30 second answers to the dreaded question… “so, tell me a little bit about yourself.”

Crafting your Elevator pitch.

So, how do you distill your entire glorious existence into 30 short seconds? The answer is…you don’t! You have to figure out the purpose of your pitch, and at Grand Circus,  it’s to get you a job. That means it doesn’t much matter to include your favorite Detroit beer shop, or how many kids you have. Let’s get to the meat of it – who are you, what’s your immediate goal, and what do you want from me?

one. Who Are You?
If you’re introducing yourself for the first time, start with your name. If the person you’re talking to already knows your name, jump right into your 1 sentence summary.Keep it concise! 

I’m a new Java developer.


NewCo Detroit: Coming in October!

September 21, 2015

When you wake up to the sounds of Canadian geese flying south, you know Fall is upon us. Sad, yes, but it means that NewCo Detroit is around the corner! NewCo Detroit is “a mashup of an open studio tour and a business conference, with the vibe of a music festival.” You get to pick and attend events of interest across this city.



Top Four Things to do in Detroit

September 3, 2015

If you’re visiting Detroit there are a few places that you HAVE to go to. They’re my absolute favorites and I take friends from out of town all the time.

One, Cafe de’ Mango’s – it’s on Griswold Street downtown. The owner, Mr. Mongo has been in the space for over 20 years, he was around when Eminem and Kid Rock were just DJ’s and they would spin at the upstairs bar. They have a band that plays every Saturday night – which is amazing! I’d suggest getting there very early or else good luck finding a seat.

Band playing at Cafe D'Mongo's!

How can you not love the Cafe D’Mongo’s band?

Two, Temple Bar – my favorite place to dance in Detroit (TV Bar is close for a tie). If you like a good dance floor and DJ this is your spot! They always have the greatest DJ’s that spin while a crowd of Detroiters dance around. It’s been known to sometimes stay open really late (past 2 am), but don’t hold your breath. I would suggest making this your last stop of the night – totally worth it. (more…)

Tips for Beginning Developers

September 1, 2015

I get a lot of questions from new coders who are just taking their first steps into the wide world of software development. These questions typically range from job availability, what language they should learn first, or how I became a developer.  


For background, I started out as a musician and got into software development in my early 30s. I pretty much had all the same questions when I was getting my start. There’s a lot of stress and tension when you’re making a decision as big as changing careers. First let me say this – take a breath. It’s not as bad as it seems. I’d like to focus on some of the technical advice I received and now give to the padawan learners I encounter (for you non-Star Wars fans, padawan = beginner) (more…)

A Friendly Intro to Version Control

August 31, 2015

The life of a developer is full of choices. The industry moves so quickly that there’s always some new tool to try or an updated best practice to incorporate. It’s impossible to pick the best overall framework or the most efficient workflow because different tools lend themselves better to different projects. That being said, there are certainly a few things that absolutely every developer should be comfortable with. Version control is one of those things. Don’t believe me? Check out our guide to preparing for a bootcamp!

When I think back to the very first websites I built as a kid, a chill runs down my spine. Hours upon hours of work could be completely lost if the power went out or I hit the wrong keys. Even if my site worked exactly the way I wanted it to, I’d have to save more than one copy if I ever wanted to go back to a previous version. (My file names got very creative!) This strategy for managing the different versions of my sites felt clumsy and wrong, but it wasn’t until much later that I was introduced to the concept of version control. (more…)

Interning at a Startup: What to Expect When You Don’t Know What To Expect

August 21, 2015

So what should you expect while interning at a startup? In short: expect everything.

Interning at a startup is an experience unlike any other.  Most likely, there will be under 50 employees and you will be among the youngest in the office.  This was the case in my experience, and while I had dedicated tasks every week and reported to a small team within the office, I still worked extensively with everyone else.  “It’s like a family.”  You’ve probably heard it before. But, you do develop a cozy sense of familiarity.  This definitely makes approaching a new internship less intimidating.  Soon enough, it’ll feel like you’ve worked at your
startup for way longer than you actually have.

Interns from 2015


10 Things to Know About Java

August 17, 2015

If you’re reading this blog, you’ve probably done some research, but still need to choose which coding language to learn. There are a lot of great options that provide job prospects and stability, including JavaScript. However, if our Java Bootcamp is a contender, here are 10 things to know about the programming language you’ll master.