Much Needed Code Academy(s) Coming to RTP

For anybody who has listened to me rant over the last year or two, I have long believed that we need a better education feeder system to literally feed the startups and early-stage companies all around us.  The two areas of most concern are software developers and online marketing folks.  This is important and causes me sleepless nights.

This issue is troubling as institutional/traditional education programs (colleges & universities) are painfully slow at adapting then teaching the platforms that are most prevalent today.  (When a recent CS graduate does not know about Ruby on Rails when 90+% of early-stage companies are utilizing this open source software platform . . . .)

The larger notion is that we (RTP) cannot continue to grow without the horses (aka talent) to do so.  The good news is I see less college grads immediately heading out to all points west or to the larger area companies.  I have also observed some in migration from experienced developers which helps and supports the thesis that awareness of RTP is growing outside the area.

But it is not enough.  This is not just an RTP issue and other regions have been significantly more proactive. General Assembly which started in NY as a space play with some educational content thrown in has now morphed into a new-age education business operating in 13 cities around the world.

Today there are two organizations, Iron Yard/Smashing Boxes (operating in the American Underground) and TechTalentSouth (operating at HQ Raleigh) that have stepped up to serve the software development hole.

Welcome to RTP – the nation’s best kept secret!

Speaker, investor, mentor, startup founder. One of 3 or 4 Co-Founders of MapQuest (sold to AOL for $1.2B). Managing Director of $25M Venture Fund in late 90's. CEO, COO or President of various companies ranging from $200k to $20M in size. One of two Managing Directors of The Startup Factory (35 investments across 7 cohorts), founder and MC of the Big Top Reverse Job Fair and national writer and speaker waxing poetic around startups and startup communities. Currently EIR @ Techstars with Brad Feld ~ Startup Communities, to help community leaders around the world grow their startup community.

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