This is the story of Thinkful, a school that teaches software development and helps people get jobs all over the world.
I think the reason I was invited here today is that our school is 100% remote, and all our students are remote. Thinkful is 100% online – we’re basically in the business of moving expertise from one place to another.
We focus on getting people jobs in the fastest growing part of the economy: software engineering, mostly websites, mobile apps.
And universities aren’t preparing students for these jobs
No longer expecting to have a part of their life in school then a part of their life when they work.
Ask anyone in their 20s today and they’ll tell you “I expect to have a new career every 10 years.”
The market is also more competitive, and skills more specialized. So jobs need training.
We are part of a larger trend toward “coding bootcamps”
Thinkful is relatively new, but in four years we’ve built the largest network of engineers that teach in this field
Teachers with 10 years experience In a classroom students get about 25 hours of teacher time. At Thinkful, each student gets about 100 hours In addition 40 hours of small group workshops 24/7 community support
So what I’m here to talk about is how we built Thinkful, and how it can help any company with training their workforce, or any school inspire future entrepreneurs.
We are a coding bootcamp Our students are avg age of 30; had students as young as 14, and certainly into 40s and 50s is normal.
Especially when companies come and have us train – we have a great partnership where we train hundreds of engineers at Uber.
But mostly you’re talking about adults who are in a job and want a better one. That tends to be everyone at some point in their career.
When I learned to code as a kid I could spend all day on it. But our students have full time jobs.
As an adult that’s not possible. …
So we built Thinkful’s courses to be flexible: and most of our students are employed. This really lowers the cost of the education beacuse you don’t have to
Most common time to meet with your mentor
The question we get asked all the time is Why do you teach 1-on-1? Esp from investors...
Because it works better. Better
It’s the gold standard...
One of the biggest lessons… was why do mentors do it.
This is key to
Online – the one place it matters Mentors only do the fun parts Mentors come with empathy, have scaffolding & 24/7 network
To take a step back...
First of all, not the elite schools – that represents very few schools, comes from a place of top down education... which is fine, and will live on for decades. But college isn't one thing.
Companies are the biggest winners: Less spend on training, more effectively and with better ROI.
Long term schools is the long-term real opportunity. Taking this model, especially to places that don’t have expertise in the topic in their locales, can really work.
jovenes con futuro / Youth with a future Paid internships for Spanish Software engineers and developers in Silicon Valley or New York. TEALS CSNYC
Teaching Software Development - Darrell Silver from Thinkful
Why we teach 1-on-1
& learn faster
When we started
We assumed these would be
We assumed these would be
✓ Finding mentors
✓ Competing with
✓ Competing with in-
✓ Building curriculum
✓ Hiring for empathy
✓ Is it working???
1. Sharing knowledge with others
2. Improve skills through teaching
3. Gain experience as a teacher
4. Watching your students succeed
7. Earn money
Why mentors do it
The future of higher education
✓ 4 years for a BA (and
✓ School then career
✓ Student debt from
✓ 2 or 3 years; less $$
✓ Lifelong learning
✓ Companies pay for
3.Prices go down
4.Childhood ed make us
The future of bootcamps