A university is far more than its curricula. People discover what and whom they love, develop the skills and EQ to build a career, and make the most meaningful professional and personal relationships of their lives.
When thinking about the future, it’s easy to extrapolate existing business models onto new technologies, but very hard to predict emergent behavior.
When the internet first came along, we created PDFs of newspapers online and said, “This will change everything!”
But it didn’t. That was Twitter — the experimentations of an online community led to the emergence of a new peer-to-peer medium, native to the internet.
Similarly, the first generation of “ed-tech” (MOOCs, etc) failed to live up to the hype. Learning from their shortcomings, On Deck “re-bundles” community with curriculum. We build the tools and culture that makes peer to peer education rewarding and personal.
What emerged is a place for continuing education and socialization for every curious human with an IP address. Stanford University, native to the internet.