General Assembly, an Adecco portfolio company, is a pioneer in education and career transformation. It is a global leader specializing in today’s most in-demand skills. GA was at the forefront of the educational boot camp model in 2011.
Since its humble beginnings as a coworking space, the education company has since helped hundreds of thousands of professionals build and grow their careers. This was accomplished through training, staffing, career transitions, and offering a large like-minded community of 35,000 graduates around the world to network with throughout your career.
As individuals and businesses struggle to compete in an increasingly technological economy, GA prides itself on providing award-winning, dynamic training to close the global skills gap. I spoke with both Tom Ogletree, SVP of Social Impact & External Affairs and Jeff Bergin, Phd, VP of Impact & Experience, to discuss the announcement of some exciting changes at GA.
They shared that the education company is making a major pivot. While it was started with physical campuses, the edtech organization is now focusing on offering virtual learning. The company is also growing worldwide, adding new learning products, supportive services for students, and best-in-class instructors. GA also brought on board a deep bench of seasoned learning experts to help expand the remote education program.
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Ogletree and Bergin said that today’s complex global economy requires a skilled workforce, and GA is preparing students to succeed in the fast-growing new digital era. Their programs are geared for a wide variety of people including those who desire a career switch, advance their career at their current organization, want to upskill themselves, or just take some classes to see if tech, data analytics or other sectors would be a smart next career step.
There are an array of programs to select from. Courses for individuals and teams include web development, data science and analysis, user experience design, digital marketing, product management, and more. With online learning, students have flexible choices including attending full-time, part-time, and short-form classes.
GAs offers teachers from the elite of the biggest and brightest companies. Hands-on business professionals from Google, Amazon, Airbnb and IBM share their real-world wisdom, along with top-flight instructors. Learning from a teacher who has been in the field for years offers students invaluable insights into what to expect once they enter the chosen field.
In addition to learning, the organization is committed to helping its students and graduates along their career journey. The learning company fields a team that focuses on getting students jobs. They have formed long-lasting partnerships and collaborations with more than 2,500 innovative employers. The curriculum is purposefully structured to ensure that relevant, current coursework is applicable to the field. Career advisors work with the students to connect with the globe’s top talent as part of their network of over 35,000 alumni.
Each student will have a dedicated career coach who will help with their professional goals and keep the job search on track, before and after graduation. They offer job search preparation including career development workshops in resume writing and networking.
There is in-depth interview training, negotiation tactics, self-branding advice, and job search check-ins with your coach. You can gain learning at leading companies in the field through case studies from real businesses and insightful talks featuring industry professionals. GA fosters networking with alumni, community meetups, and meeting local employers ranging from hot startups to Fortune 500 companies, at exclusive events and showcases with GA’s hiring partners.
Lisa Lewin, CEO of General Assembly, said in a company blog post about the new virtual direction the company is taking, “We have fantastic momentum as we launch new products for our students and our enterprise clients – most recently with the launch of our Data Analytics Immersive – and have many more new launches and announcements planned in the weeks and months to come. I could not be more excited about all of the incredible work the team at GA is doing to write the next chapter of our growth story. “
The CEO also said that it’s become clear to her that the organization’s strength emanates from the mission, people, students, instructors, alumni—and not just from a physical location. Lewin is animated over the promise that she offers students to help transform their lives and careers by providing the scaffolding and support at every stage of their learning journey. Lewin is energized to meet this moment and continues to support the needs and aspirations of her students, while also enabling governments and enterprises to meet their goals of building robust pipelines of new diverse tech talent.
She said that GA has expanded into new geographies and markets through community reskilling partnerships, led by regional employers and elected political officials that seek to build and cultivate talent ecosystems. They are expanding offerings into new languages and delivery mechanisms with the goal of becoming truly global. A deep bench of seasoned learning experts have been onboarded to help with these new initiatives.
Lewin joined this business as a former customer – and self-proclaimed fangirl – taking classes in coding and marketing in GA’s early days as she was building her own business. She is highly optimistic, saying as we look to our next decade of continued growth and evolution, “I’m excited to lead this team as we enter more communities, transform more lives, and support enterprises, governments, and individuals to adapt to an ever-changing world of work. Onward!”