College Dropout Helps Filipinos Become Software Engineers in 12 Weeks

Published January 25, 2021, 8:35 AM

by Robert "Bob" Reyes

In a country where corporations value a printed diploma over technical skills, one college dropout has established an online school that teaches Filipinos to become remote software engineers globally.

Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash

With their mission of helping build the local tech ecosystem and making education more accessible in the Philippines, Victor Rivera and John Young co-founded Avion School [] with a unique “Pay only when you’re hired” scheme last February 2020.

The school promises students to learn the fundamentals of writing code and the skills of the best software engineers. They will teach you how to build software and websites using the latest engineering stack and work with teams – just like in the real world – bootcamp style (fewer theories and more on actual projects). They will also mentor you on how to apply for top software jobs. If after the bootcamp and you, unfortunately, are not hired, you don’t need to pay them a cent.

“We believe in helping students achieve higher heights that allow them to dream more and be more. Avion is a word that describes that perfectly,” according to Rivera when asked the reason why the school was named as such.

At present, many take IT courses thinking that they will land in an IT-related job. But what happens in reality, most end up in call centers or take another field completely not related to Information Technology. Also, with schools in commercial partnership with software vendors, and with little or no incentives to train students how to work with tech companies, it has become very competitive to hire talented developers out of college.

“Regardless if you are talking to a local tech startup or a large publicly listed corporation, the same problem occurs – the (software) engineers that they have are not trained to integrate with APIs. Added to that, it is just so hard to hire good engineers and the Philippine market needed a lot more engineers. The only way to do that is to teach them yourself,” added Rivera.

Avion School wants to address these problems in the shortest time possible, as they cater to both students and career shifters who wish to pursue a career in software engineering. From the time they started taking in applicants, Avion School has inked partnerships with PayMongo and Quickwire – two of the big names in the local startup scene – to supply talents in the ever-growing demand for developers.