ConsenSys Academy Nurtures Next Gen of Blockchain Developers

Blockchain, Education, FinTech, Group, Interviews | October 3, 2017 By:

ConsenSys Academy has created its first Developer Program class, admitting 150 blockchain developers out of 1,300 applicants.

The academy is working with the Smart Dubai Office and the Dubai Future Foundation to help fill the worldwide shortage of blockchain developers. The class will be flown to Dubai for a three-day hackathon, followed by the graduation ceremony on October 22. Certificates of completion will be issued on the ethereum blockchain.

Block Tribune talked with Akshi Federici, the Executive Director of Strategic Projects and Global Head of Consensys Academy about the program.

BLOCK TRIBUNE:  Describe the curriculum the Academy students will go through. What level of knowledge did they come in with, and what were the focus areas of instruction?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  The curriculum is comprehensive and multi-modal – focused on coding, devops, theory, standards, auditing, as well as ethics. It is also broad across the Ethereum ecosystem. Unique aspects that are not covered by any other course provider other than ConsenSys include topics like LLL as well as in-depth study on Solidity, Truffle, Oracles etc. 

The course included team projects, individual quizzes / exercises, and an optional project where students are encouraged to pursue / develop their own venture ideas. We have seen tremendous interest in this optional project as well as high engagement throughout the course.

BLOCK TRIBUNE:  What will students be working on?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  In Dubai, the top students from Phase 1 of the program will work on real-life blockchain projects in a hackathon-style setting and will present their final projects to a panel of ConsenSys-ers. They will also be pitching some of their own venture ideas to ConsenSys.

BLOCK TRIBUNE: How big a shortage exists in ethereum blockchain developers?  And how quickly can that gap be closed?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  Per Bloomberg in 2016, globally, 7,000 to 8,000 people can develop for the blockchain with various levels of proficiency.”  LinkedIn in 2017 that the number of job postings increased more than three-fold, signaling the high demand.  ConsenSys Academy’s mission is to is to develop the global blockchain ecosystem by bridging the Ethereum knowledge gap and becoming the beacon for Ethereum education. This is only our first step, and given the overwhelming reception, we are moving as fast as possible to support the movement.

BLOCK TRIBUNE: If someone wants to become a blockchain developer, what should be their areas of focus?

AKSHI FEDERICI:   Focus on object oriented programming principles, JavaScript. Jump right in. Apply to ConsenSys Academy’s next program.

BLOCK TRIBUNE:  Is there an average starting salary for a blockchain developer?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  Demand is higher than supply, so salaries are very competitive.

BLOCK TRIBUNE:  Are the developer shortages more acute in certain areas of the globe?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  Blockchain and distributed technologies are a global revolution. The shortage of talent is a global epidemic. Due to the distributed nature of blockchain, every corner of the globe is quickly being enabled and should be enabled to join us in this revolution.

BLOCK TRIBUNE:  If someone learns to build an ethereum blockchain, is that skill set easily transferrable to other types of blockchains?

AKSHI FEDERICI:  The theoretical concepts would be the same but for the purposes of a developer, the various programming languages across blockchains do differ so they would need to learn new blockchain languages. Having said that, there are some blockchains that are easy to port your skills over / across e.g. Ethereum <> Quorum. >