The traditional four-year college model puts all the risk on the consumer: Students borrow to make huge tuition payments, and may be forced into default if they can’t find a well-paying job after graduation. But a number of coding academies are experimenting with a different concept: The educational institution should have skin in the game.
From the WSJ:
Guarantees may be a scary prospect for four-year colleges, but they are built into the business model of the new and rapidly growing for-profit coding boot camps, which depends on students seeing a solid return on their investment.
Udacity, a Silicon Valley-based online course provider last year launched a deal on a nano-credential—find a job in six months or get your tuition back. The program cost is between $2,000 and $3,000.
The Flatiron School, a coding boot camp in New York City, guarantees its students will receive a full-time job offer in the field within six months of graduation or they get their money back. The Learners Guild in Oakland pays each student $1,500 a month to take a 10-month coding course and only gets paid the $25,000 tuition once the student graduates and is employed in a tech job, making at least $50,000 a year.
Cheaper alternatives to college with a guaranteed job offer? More of this, please. It’s not a serious liberal arts education, but then neither is most of the thin gruel served up at many four year, high-priced colleges. Ten months of code camp beats four years of ‘business communications’.