Published: 24th October 2019
Eat, sleep, code, repeat! Find out how programming is taught at the Masai School in Bengaluru
Prateek Shukla, Founder of Masai School tells us about the military-style training school for aspiring programmers
From 9am to 9pm, six days a week, the students at Masai School in Bengaluru have rigorous training sessions on coding and the soft skills related to it. While it might sound cruelly intensive, Prateek Shukla, the founder of the school believes that this is necessary for aspiring coders to avoid any sort of distraction and achieve their goal.
A graduate of IIT Kanpur, Prateek did his internship with Teach for India and was heading the whole campus ambassadorship for North and Eastern India. This was his first stint with education. After that, he founded Grabhouse, a startup that connects tenants directly with the tenants. He also worked with a real estate group in Chennai.
Prateek Shukla, Founder of Masai School is a graduate of IIT Kanpur
But education was something that remained close to his heart. In fact, he has been funding four kids for their entire education. He started analysing the biggest need in the education sector. " There is an alarming report from Aspiring Minds that around 95 per cent of Computer Science engineers can't write a single code. Coding is going to be the second language across the world. So the challenge is how can we change the education system to make them programmers if they have an inclination towards it," says Prateek.
That's how the idea for Masai School school came about. Situated in Bengaluru, Masai School is a military-style coding school. It includes thousand hours of hands-on training, 100 hours of soft skill training and 100 hours of computer skills training. The entire curriculum is designed to create a job-ready workforce. "We started our first batch of 17 students in June this year and they will be graduating in the last week of October. Although our modules are online, the students will have to stay on campus because we don't want them to be distracted during these six months," he says.
The school has students aged anywhere between 18 and 32 years. There are women who have taken a break and hope to restart their careers. There are people who have shifted sectors. There are a couple of freshers, dropouts and school students as well.
The best thing about the school is that it is completely risk-free. Prateek explains, "We don't charge any upfront fees from students. We sign an income share agreement with them that if they land a job above 6 lakh per annum, they should give us 15 per cent every month for three years, which is capped at Rs 3 lakh in total. If they don't earn that much or land a job in some other sector, they don't have to pay us anything."
The school focuses on the holistic development of every individual. "We teach concepts through programming. Most of the time is spent on writing codes. We also spend a lot of time on their soft skill improvement and building their mathematical skills. For instance, we have typing tests to help them build their typing skills," he adds.
Explaining why he named the school Masai, he says, "I once went on a trip to Tanzania and Kenya and I spent a lot of time with the Masai tribe. The chieftain told me that the Masai people pride themselves in being the strongest tribe, but none of them have formal education. From their childhood, they skill themselves. So they have the best farmers, builders and cultivators. So when I thought about what to do in the education startup, I felt the focus should be on skilling."