DRW White Paper

DRW and Code Platoon: Working together to provide Veterans and military spouses careers in technology

DRW, a Chicago-based, technology-driven principal trading firm, has been a trusted partner to Code Platoon since 2016, when the firm’s Chief Information Officer,  Seth Thomson, recognized the power of Code Platoon to help find undiscovered, well-trained and talented Veterans and spouses who could add value to his teams. 

“DRW was an early adopter of Code Platoon and took a chance on our training program,” said Rod Levy, founder and Executive Director,  Code Platoon. “Their seal of approval has helped cement Code Platoon as a premier coding Bootcamp.  DRW has incredibly high standards and so for others in the space to see their involvement in the program and the success graduates were having was a game-changer.”

DRW believes hiring from Code Platoon is one of those “do good while doing well” situations.  While the firm is eager to support Veterans as they reintegrate into civilian life, the firm recognizes that it benefits from having mature talent that is ready to jump in and make a difference.  Code Platoon graduates combine their technical skills with military traits, including loyalty, discipline, and the ability to learn. From day one at DRW,  graduates are part of teams working to solve complex problems in markets worldwide and across many asset classes, and they bring not only their passion for developing technical skills, but also life skills they have learned during their service.

“I am an extremely enthusiastic champion of the work of Code Platoon and the exceptional cohorts they graduate,” said Thomson.  “It’s a true honor for  me personally to be able to help those that have dedicated themselves to service to find the next path for utilizing their skills and cultivate new opportunities.  And after many years, I can confidently say I think everyone involved wins here.  Our tech teams love welcoming each graduate to the firm, and mentors always tell me they learn something, too.  Our firm has sourced tremendous talent through this program.  And, we’re diversifying the tech workforce, which is important to all of us.”

To date, DRW has provided apprenticeships to 13 Code Platoon graduates. Eleven of those apprentices were offered full-time positions (and one is still an apprentice). They now work on eight different teams at DRW, contributing to diverse projects within the firm, including security, business support, trading desks, and data services. 

Hank Moon, a 2019 Code Platoon graduate and Air Force Veteran, said, “When I left the military, I was working with a very tight-knit team. We were almost like family.  I get that same sense of family at DRW.” 

Hank currently works with the Business Support Services team and frequently collaborates with other Code Platoon graduates. 

Beyond hiring from Code Platoon, DRW also provides program support to students in the training program. DRW encourages employees to volunteer their time as mentors, resume coaches, teaching assistants, and workshop leaders. 

Mentors provide an opportunity for students to grow their professional networks and learn more about working as software engineers. Teaching assistants are available weekday evenings as technical support to students, helping them complete coding challenges and other assignments. Workshop leaders, like DRW’s Chris Walquist and Rene Duquesnoy, provide specialized GIT and Linux commands training to each Code Platoon cohort.

“I find it very fulfilling to hold open for others the doors that were opened for me,” said Walquist. “Code Platoon lets me do that by offering volunteer opportunities as a mentor and workshop leader.”

If you are interested in a hiring partnership or volunteer opportunities with Code Platoon, please visit the employer resource page or contact our career services team.

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