Once upon a time : 42 Québec

42 Québec and Québec numérique history are inseparable as this organization has brought the 42 project to life in beautiful Quebec City.

Une étudiante et un étudiant devant leur ordinateur au campus

2010-2016: First visit at 42 Paris and the dream that follows

In 2010, a small group of digital enthusiasts and several volunteers created the first edition of the WAQ, the Web à Québec. The objective is clear: “by the community, for the community”. The projects to be carried out by this core of freaks are piling up, and the success of the WAQ is growing.

During a visit to the digital community of Bordeaux in March 2013, the administrators saw the need to develop international fraternities and promote the emergence of new projects. Everything is accelerating quickly; the organization needs to be structured. In 2013, Québec numérique was born!

42 Paris was also created this same year. Founded by Xavier Niel, 42 is an alternative training institution in computer programming aimed to alleviate the labor shortage in the tech industry. Its pedagogy is unlike anything known: peer-learning and project-based approach, no diploma needed, free and open to everyone above 18.

The projects continue to grow at high speed for Québec numérique. International contacts are made, expertise is shared around unifying events, such as the first Semaine numériQC in 2016.

Then comes the revelation for QN: a visit to 42 Paris. “On a mission for Québec numérique in Paris in 2016, I had the opportunity to visit the 42 campus. I was quickly convinced that we needed this educational option in Quebec City”, says Carl-Frédéric De Celles, chairman of the board of directors.

The lack of IT manpower is already significant in 2016 in Quebec, and it will only increase.

Plusieurs étudiantes et étudiants devant leur ordinateur au campus

“42 Pedagogy is a huge innovation. We knew this could be a way to reach and appeal to all those who didn’t fit the system. A way to learn differently, at their own pace. That complements the actual educational programs in Quebec”, adds the chairman.

2017-2019: Expansion of Québec numérique and the 42 Québec project

While the NPO hires more and more employees each year to take on the various projects that are added, 42 campuses are spreading across the world.

In 2018, the organization gets the incredible help of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education to put together a plan, explore the doability of the project and establish contacts with 42.

It was in 2019 that Dominic Goulet, formerly a member of the board of Québec numérique, agreed to become its new director. Former programmer himself, he embraces the 42 project.

42 Québec is taking shape as is the 42 Network, a global network of campus dedicated to alternative learning, structured under the aegis of Sophie Viger. Québec numérique hires 2 new employees to carry out the project: Bianca and Isabelle. In the same period, several renowned companies joined the project. These partners ensure, through their involvement, a privileged contact with the students.

2020-2021: A 42 campus in Quebec City

In 2020, the organization finds the best location for the campus: 330 Saint-Vallier Est, office 300, in the former Le Soleil building. A press conference was held on July 2nd announcing the financial support of the Ministère du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale, through the Commission des partenaires du marché du travail (CPMT), and Ville de Québec with the program Vision entrepreneuriale 2023.

Renovations are going well in the building, but the pandemic is shaking up plans. The team must adapt and push back the first Piscine to accommodate (Piscine is the last admission step to join the campus).

Meanwhile, Québec numérique hires 3 new employees to properly manage the infrastructure, student life, and pedagogy on site. Tom and Cori, from 42 Paris, bring their expertise as tech and pedagogical advisers. Sophie also joins the team as head of admissions and student life.

Finally, the first Piscine happens! It is held at 42 Quebec in February 2021, followed shortly by another in March. The first cohort of students enters the campus on May 4th. Two other Piscines then take place in July and August to welcome another cohort on September 13th.

Des étudiantes et étudiants du campus les bras levés en signe de victoire et de fête

Nearly 70 people are currently studying computer programming at 42 Quebec. The next Piscine will be held from January 10th to February 4th, 2022, and another one will take place on February 21st. 42 Québec team is confident in reaching the ambitious yearly goal of 200 students. More than half of the seats are already reserved!

“Today, 42 Québec is no longer a dream, thanks to public funding and our partners! Our campus is a project carried out “by the community, for the community”, in line with Québec numérique’s global vision. Our students have close access to the IT industry in St-Roch, the technology district in Quebec City, ”concludes Dominic Goulet, director of Québec numérique.