Wicky’s Nakul Pednekar on the Value of Industry Placement Programs
Nakul Pednekar is a Coder Academy partner and owner of Sydney startup Wicky.
From its origins as Nakul’s passion project, Wicky has grown into a full-fledged sports analytics company, offering data-driven insights for sports fans and organisations.
Nakul is passionate about giving junior developers a positive experience, and an opportunity to get a foot in the door in the tech industry. Not only has he offered Coder Academy bootcamp graduates the opportunity for fully remote four-week internships at Wicky – but he has also employed these graduates on a casual basis once their internship has been completed, and until they have found full-time employment elsewhere.
At the end of 2021, when Wicky rebranded, Nakul put his trust in our bootcamp graduates once again, and together they created the new Wicky website.
We caught up recently with Nakul to find out more about Wicky, the industry placement program, and how our bootcamp graduates and his startup have been able to grow together.
Coder Academy: Hi Nakul. Can you tell us how long you’ve been a partner with Coder Academy?
Nakul Pednekar: Since July 2020.
Coder: That’s great. And being a startup organisation, what challenges have you overcome with the help of Coder Academy students?
Nakul: We’ve had three pairs from Coder Academy join us. In August 2020, February 2021 and August 2021. They’ve been our first ever developers and built our data products, built our most complicated product and built our new website from scratch in those three groups!
Coder: What does your company offer Coder Academy students?
Nakul: Real-life exposure to working on our data products on our website, plus end-to-end experience working with the data science team.
Coder: Why do you feel it is important to support tech students?
Nakul: We feel this is a win-win, giving them exposure to real-life experience and being their bridge to getting permanent, full-time employment.
The internship, plus casual role with us is a perfect opportunity for them to get flexible employment with us that gives them real-life examples to be able to discuss in their interviews.
Coder: You’ve recently rebranded. Can you tell us how Coder Academy students helped you with this?
Nakul: We worked with an external UX consultancy and our two Coder Academy interns to build our whole website! It seemed daunting at first, but we’re confident of being able to train the interns in the first two weeks so they can deliver on any given task within the next month. They did an amazing job on wicky.ai.
Coder: Thanks Nakul. Is there anything else that you would like to say about the partnership program with Coder Academy?
Nakul: We are so confident in the capabilities of the Coder Academy interns that we now base our interviews on personality/cultural fit, etc. rather than technical skills.
We know the interns will have a reasonable technical base to go off and if they’re motivated to make the most of our internship then they can genuinely launch their career in tech. Coder Academy has been an invaluable asset for our company to become the rapidly growing sports analytics startup that we have become today!
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