If you’re entrenched in the tech scene, you know there has been incredible buzz around design and development. Great organizations, like Code Academy and Chicago Women Developer’s Group, are supporting the rapid growth and training of talented developers in Chicago. But, most developer programs are focused specifically on desktop and web development.

There is growing demand for mobile developers, but there are few- if any- organizations focused on mobile development. When it comes down to it, iOS developers are in high demand and there aren’t enough of them. Soon, more people will use smartphones to access the internet rather than desktop computers, and Apple’s iOS devices obviously hold a significant share of this market. It’s increasingly important to cultivate mobile developer talent. One clear indicator of this: the TIOBE index just ranked Objective-C as the #3 most popular programming language on the planet, and named it the hottest language of 2011.

Brandon Passley and Reid Lappin of Mobile Makers Academy (and co-founders of VOKAL Interactive) have learned a lot about the mobile space over the years, while turning VOKAL into the top mobile development shop in Chicago. So, with the assistance of Dave Hoover, they decided to help build the mobile development and design community into something awesome by sharing what they have learned.

Dave Hoover, former principal of Obtiva (acquired by Groupon in August, 2011) says, “With the success of the iOS platform, we don’t anticipate that trend to change in the short-term, so we are creating an academy to help meet the demand for more people who know how to make tear-jerkingly beautiful experiences on our planet’s favorite software platform.”

Enter: Mobile Makers Academy.

The Mobile Makers Academy is a 10-week training program, focused solely on mobile development technologies. Our program was created to equip developers with the proper skills, knowledge, and experience, to build beautiful, native applications from scratch.

Throughout the intensive course, master iOS expert, Don Bora, will be teaching students Objective-C basics, Xcode 4 IDE, Interface Builder and Instruments and more. Students will learn new skills every class session, and will also have access to studio hours – devoted time to work with seasoned iOS developers one-on-one.

There are a number of startups, corporations, and agencies that are looking to do things with mobile right now. Throughout the program, Mobile Makers will bring in company founders, CTO’s, and other mobile and iOS experts to give talks at classes and a chance for them to find out what the students are learning and building. Students will have the chance to meet with several companies throughout the program.

We’re looking for developers who are excited about learning the iOS platform and are ready to commit to starting something new. Ideally, some students will have ideas for apps that they can build during the 10 week course, but this is not at all a requirement.

Mobile Makers runs on a quarterly schedule with the first class, focused on iOS development, starting October 1st in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. Hoover, who founded and leads the apprenticeship program at Groupon and helped Code Academy get off the ground, is also crafting an engaging experience for students to make sure nothing gets dull. Applications for the Fall quarter are currently open for beginners who are passionate about learning the iOS platform. The tuition for the class is $3,900 (this is typically $8,000, but is being subsidized by the support of VOKAL Interactive).

Sound interesting to you? Learn more about Mobile Makers Academy and sign up to take part by September 3rd at