CodersTrust Helps the Next Generation to Realize Their Potential
When Skype founder Morten Lund was seeking support for his internet phone service in 2004, many businesses turned him away. Now he is back to launch a new business venture, and this time the business officials are listening.
Coders Trust is a micro-financing company that is aimed at freelancers and students in emerging markets who want to upgrade their programming skills. The company provides loans to students to take courses and charges a 10 per cent commission from their freelance fees in return.
Lund serves as the chairman of CodersTrust, and has a mission to effectively help young talented programmers in developing countries become a part of the labor market of the future. The company redefines the concept of virtual education and tie young people’s online education directly to the demand on the global online job markets. CodersTrust democratizes education by creating a new education infrastructure, where the best IT- and software developers get in direct contact with employers all around the world.
Under Lund’s lead, the company plans to train 100,000 IT talents within 3 years. This is a burgeoning business as according to a report by McKinsey, freelance portals will create more than 150 million jobs globally by 2025.
Millions of IT jobs are offered on a daily basis on jobsites, but youth in developing countries need qualifications in order to solve the tasks. CodersTrust engages the best programmers, provide them with a microloan so they can help their families while they work and achieve the qualifications needed to obtain even more clients – and one day maybe even become an entrepreneur.
Here is an interview with CodersTrust.
Classroom Aid: How to teach under-privileged learners in different rural areas? Their education and knowledge might vary with a very wide range.
CodersTrust: Exactly, their education and knowledge vary. The same approach will not work for our students in Dhaka and for our students in rural areas on the province of Bangladesh. Even tribe to tribe in rural area is pretty much different. They usually do not have basic computer skills. CodersTrust in cooperation with UNDP is starting an initiative in rural areas of Chittagong Hill Tracts. Our students will get trainings on data entry from local mentors. People they can trust and people from the very same culture and tribe as they are. Our students in Dhaka are attending coding courses. They are usually University students and young people interested in technology and development.
Classroom Aid: How does the learning work? Online or blended learning? Who will teach? How to assess the learning outcomes?
CodersTrust: Currently we are using blended learning in Bangladesh, where our students learn from our Learn&Earn Centre from experienced mentors and also online. We are aiming to get fully online in upcoming month. Teachers are developers with experience in teaching, mentoring and freelancing. Besides coding, they teach our students how to sell themselves online in highly competitive environment of freelance markets.
Classroom Aid: What is the motivation or benefits of businesses that join the program?
CodersTrust: Investment into education is the greatest investment. Businesses benefit as well as our students. On one site, companies are building with us their corporate social responsible image. On the other side, they have access to young talented work force. We are currently offering sponsored batches to potential business partners. ICT companies can hire the best students in selected batches. We recently started with our new initiative to empower women in tech, we aim to open fully female batches in upcoming months in Bangladesh. Companies that have lack of female coders can support these batches and benefit from hiring the best ones.
Classroom Aid: How do the learners meet the quick changing pace of business challenges?
CodersTrust: We are providing courses that are on demand these days. Our offer is flexible and it’s developing together with labour market needs.