A mini-series on the relationship between last-mile education and work

I’m REALLY delayed in publishing this — I finished writing this back in April 2018 as a part of an undergraduate thesis, but my interests pivoted to exploring entrepreneurial education. Better late than never. :)

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I started a company that connected education and work, and it piqued my curiosity about education.

A year and a half later, I’ve researched the fundamentals of education, dove into the factors transforming it, and glimpsed into where we’re headed.

Here are some of the most significant findings.

Educational content will originate from fewer institutions

It’s easier than ever to start a company. According to Paul Singh, a prolific angel investor and venture capitalist, $5,000 today is roughly the equivalent of $5,000,000 in 1995 when it comes to starting a business. However, Singh remarked on Twitter, it also means it’s more expensive than ever to grow a company. …


Why it’s time to move toward usage-based billing structures in SaaS

People give credit to Thomas Edison for inventing the first commercially viable light bulb and advocating for the commercialization of direct current. One thing Edison can’t take credit for, however, is the system that could properly charge and bill for the value of these products.

In fact, Edison was initially pretty bad at charging for his ventures. …


I had a weird feeling while descending into San Francisco.

It was a mix of excitement and gitiness, but also a little bit of worry — I usually half-joke that I’ve never been out to California before because I was afraid I’d never leave. On the surface, California seems to have everything I love: technology entrepreneurs, great food and drinks, biking, progressive urbanism, and just cool stuff.

The truth is simpler. I’ve never had a reason to go out to California. …


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This post is a part of the Intask to Education series where I’m exploring the changing relationship between education and work. You can read the first post here.

Students in the United States have a range of last-mile education experiences. Some students choose to finish their education after high school, while others pursue 2-year Associate’s or 4-year Bachelor’s degrees.

On average, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that pursuing higher levels of education leads to lower unemployment and higher wage earnings, but to get a holistic picture of the financial relationship between education and work, it’s also important to consider the cost of tuition. …


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This post is a part of the Intask to Education series where I’m exploring the changing relationship between education and work. You can read the first post here.

Employers demand that entry-level hiring candidates have more work experience than ever before.

According to a 2017 survey conducted by National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), more than 9 in 10 employers prefer that their candidates have some work experience. The majority of those respondents prefer that their candidates have relevant work experience compared to general work experience.

Traditionally, students have gained work experience from apprenticeships and internships to finalize their last-mile education. …


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Richard Xu is a great example of the diversity of change makers within the StartupIU community.

Richard balances studying Finance in the Kelley School of Business, studying Violin Performance in the Jacobs School of Music, and growing the StartupIU community as a Shoemaker Scholar.

Oh yea —somehow he manages to tinker on blockchain projects and start his own non-profit, too.

I’ve been fortunate to get to know Richard as a fellow Shoemaker Scholar. Now it’s your turn — let’s get started!

Give us your “Twitter bio” or elevator pitch.

I’m an aspiring financial quantitative engineer with a bit of an unusual background. I came to IU originally as a violinist, pianist, and film/video-game composer, but rekindled my love for business and technology over the last few years and have been working in this space ever since. …


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This post is a part of the Intask to Education series where I’m exploring the changing relationship between education and work. You can read the first post here.

Until the internet, professors and instructors — key distributors of the information needed to meet the demands of the industrialized economy — were only accessible by paying students.

However, professors, instructors, and institutions haven’t had a monopoly on education. Apprenticeships have demonstrated that working professionals can pass along information about professional skills to the next generation without going through an institution. Trade schools and community colleges provided alternatives to traditional 4-year universities. …


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This post is a part of the Intask to Education series where I’m exploring the changing relationship between education and work. You can read the first post here.

After publishing my last post, I realized I was in way over my head.

I thought I understood education’s problem. I had read a few books, listened to some podcasts, talked with businesses and educators, but I was far from thinking critically about why education exists as it does in 2018. …


A mini-series on the relationship between last-mile education and work

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In February, I ceased operations at my startup, Intask, because I learned I was chasing the wrong problem.

(I also learned a lot of other stuff along the way)

My vision was for Intask to leverage the growing freelancer economy and the plethora of project management and communication tools to help transform the relationship between students and businesses. I wanted to Intask to help students and businesses connect over project-based work so businesses could grow their talent pipeline and get projects done. …


A reflection on the current crypto market

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This post is intended for informational purposes only and is not investment advice.

It’s hard to guess if Satoshi Nakamoto could have predicted the current state of bitcoin, blockchain, and distributed ledgers.

Since the release of the infamous bitcoin whitepaper in 2008, cryptocurrencies have minted a plethora of new millionaires, piqued at an $800 billion market capitalization, and gained interest from institutional investors.

However, as Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin recently called into question, how much of the value have we earned?

After posing several rhetorical questions about the value created from banking the unbanked to implementing smart contracts, Vitalik asserted that value created by cryptocurrencies is definitely not zero, but not enough to justify the current market capitalization. …

About

Wes Wagner

Social capital, global + remote startups, scrappy growth, coffee, intentionality, MDE & IND. Currently: exploring Past: growth @microverseinc (YC S19)

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