August 25th, 2014 Thinking Big: The Evolution of Tech Ed

On August 25th, 2014, OCL visited Geekdom for the tech in motion meetup that was focused on the evolution of Ed Tech. Employees of HackerRank, MakerSquare and RocketU were going to talk about their companies.

Naveet, started this company, HackerRank, that wanted to allow coders to get jobs based on their skill. “I hardly ever did well on interviews” Naveed said. At one point he did some work at Amazon and where I went through a lot of phone interviews. The interview process these days can be intense.

He realized something was broken after having to do interviews. HackerRank started out as a interview-prep program, but it failed. So, they they eventually pivoted to help India’s students applying for their masters.

Along the ride they ended up having a few failed ideas that were based on actual skills and merit, not your background.

They went around to different companies and asked them if they would use our product. They were trying to make the interviewing process easier and more effective.

Shaan from MakerSquare was next to talk about his venture. MakeSquare is a school that trains software devs by in-person training.

Shaan originally studied accounting and finance at the University of Illinois. “I realized from my older siblings I was not going to be happy working in finance, and I ended up learning how to code instead,” Shaan said.

“This change instantly brought more happiness to my life, even with a 20k pay cut,” Shaan said.

They collect a lot of feedback on students who leave our school and get hired. They are constantly changing their curriculum. It helps them build a better relationship with companies who want to hire MakerSquare graduates.

MakerSquare prides itself on the constant feedback from the companies they work with to make sure they are training people in the software development skills that matter.

Duncan, CEO and Founder of RocketSpace / RocketU was last to talk about his Ed Tech company.

Duncan, started RocketSpace in January 2011, which is a co-working space for tech companies. They selected what they thought were the very best companies. “Uber came through our service,” Duncan said.

In the first 3 years that RocketU was up and running, the companies we hosted raised 3 billion dollars.

RocketU has now become our dev boot camp that focuses on python because there are not that many classes that exist. Their python class is a 12 week course, and everyone who’s passed the course and who’s wanted a job has got one.

Things are done a little bit differently at RocketU.They use a consulting from called Yeti to hire the teachers. This means that teachers can be constantly changing hopefully for the better providing a different experience.