The Burlington Technical Center is a vocational program for high school students who want to prepare for careers during high school. Unlike other programs, Burlington Tech courses only runs for a few hours each day, so students may compete the bulk of their academic study at their sending high schools.
The BTC Web Clinic is a “Work-Based Learning” project within BTC’s Programming and Computer Science program, where students design and manage individual and group projects over the course of the two years they study with us. The Web Clinic team uses professional tools and work patterns, learning together and collaborating to build or upgrade websites for clinical clients. Though there is much to learn, each student brings strengths, wisdom, and experiences to the table.
The makeup and background of each year’s web team determines how many clients at what level of need we can serve over the course of the year. After reviewing the results of free consults, we select a small number of clients who are a good fit.
We specialize in WordPress, an open-source product with free and paid options. Hosting and fees for “plugins” and “themes” for a WordPress site range between $50 and $200/year. We recommend hosting, plugins and themes for each site, and clients purchase what they need directly. At the end of the academic year, clients may choose to take the work products to other developers, learn to work on their own, or hire our students as outside contractors to support their work.
After their first year, students are encouraged to open up shop as individual contractors for fixed bids ($500 – $1,000 per site) or low rates ($25/hour, or $20/hour on 10-hour retainers), under the supervision of clinical director Bram Moreinis. Bram started a web company in 2005 with ex-students and adult employees. Their company, Game Face Web Design, developing sites in Drupal and Moodle. Game Face also managed a Pay-Per-Click search marketing and Landing Page management group called PPC Tarmac. Bram brings over a decade of web design, development and marketing practice to Burlington Tech, and a passion for empowering young people through IT service learning.
Prior to joining Burlington Tech in 2018, Bram ran a summer program called Tech Scouts, doing similar clinical web work on a very accelerated timeline. Visit the Tech Scouts program website for a video about their work with three clients, and the subsequent launch of a student web company.