New Coding Academy Graduates Ready for Workforce | ECTC

New Coding Academy Graduates Ready for Workforce

Published on Jun 24, 2021

The Greater Knox Coding Academy of Elizabethtown Community and Technical College is ready to send out its next batch of programmers and coders. The spring 2021 cohort included 16 students from six counties.

Former Coding Academy graduate and current teaching assistant Laura Lang said earning the certifications and corresponding college credit during the 17-week program is the equivalent of more than two years of work experience in the IT field.

“Employers will be fortunate to get these folks as new hires,” Lang said. “These individuals are highly motivated, seek continuous self-improvement, work well on teams, and show great perseverance. Showing up with a positive attitude from beginning to end is a hallmark of this cohort.”

Students of the academy reflected Lang’s sentiments about the rigor of the program and agreed that what they’ve learned will open numerous doors for employment in the region.

“I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it,” Coding Academy student Derek Brown said. “Starting a career afterward is important but overall, I can take these skills I've learned and apply them to pretty much anything I'd want to do.”

Another student in the cohort, Kelly Blackwell, said the coding academy was an opportunity she found after being displaced from employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“I had just moved to Kentucky from Florida and was in my job for four weeks in the bourbon industry when the COVID-19 Pandemic hit and brought the hospitality industry pretty much to a halt,” said Blackwell. “I have a background in multi-media so when I found the Coding Academy, I thought it was a great opportunity. One door shut with the pandemic, but it’s incredible that another one flew wide open.”

Blackwell, a non-traditional student, went on to say that the rigorous coursework requires careful time management and prioritizing, and she’s proud to complete the program.  

Plans for a new cohort have not yet been announced. The latest updates will be available at