Published: 19th October 2019
The Coding Ninjas story: Why this EdTech start-up wants you to pay their fee only after you land a great job
We spoke to Coding Ninjas Co-Founder and CEO Ankush Singla to find out more about the evolving ed-tech sector and how coding is something that everyone wishes to learn
Now, you can learn programming online on your own schedule with the help of Coding Ninjas, a Delhi-based EdTech start-up that uses its proprietary learning management platform called CodeZen to train students using interactive videos. Whether you are a student or a working professional, you don't need to quit your current job and put your life on hold to learn to code. We spoke to Ankush Singla, Co-founder and CEO, Coding Ninjas, on how the company is helping students land their dream jobs with zero upfront fees. If students are not able to get a job higher than the minimum offer guarantee, then they are not liable to pay anything back to the company. We learned more about this and how Coding Ninjas helps students from him. Here's what transpired:
When was Coding Ninjas founded? What does it do to help students?
Coding Ninjas is an EdTech start-up that was founded in the year 2016. Coding Ninjas provides online programming courses that range from Basic foundation-level courses (to build a strong base) to Advanced-level courses. Most up-to-date programming technologies are taught to match the requirements of the software industry. We have taught over 17,000 students all over India.
We've heard you employ visually challenged people. How does this work in software?
Coding Ninjas has been associated with Sarathee for quite some time and we are proud of this partnership. Hiring visually impaired people is not a challenge as they have more than enough passion and enthusiasm to achieve something on their own. Certain changes were done to ease the process to bring them on board like "Using voicemail or email messages instead of written memos", "computer modifications, like screen reader software and screen magnifiers", "Large print and braille materials", "Adjusted lighting" and so on. They are our education counsellors and have been instrumental in providing the right guidance to the students and helping them choose the right career path. All our education counsellors at Sarathee have become financially independent, highly ambitious and self-reliant now.
Ankush Singla, Co-founder and CEO, Coding Ninjas
You've been talking about CodeZen. What does it do?
CodeZen is a platform that provides users with an option to program and write code in a programming language of their own choice. Once someone starts programming, the first step includes downloading and setting up multiple software on computers and laptops. Coding Ninjas understood the problems a novice faces and created an online platform that provides support for multiple languages like C++, Java, Python without any hassle. This removed all the apprehensions from the minds of first-time-coders and all they needed to focus on was only up-skilling themselves.
What is the Coding Ninjas Career Camp all about?
The entrance test was conducted last month on September 28, 2019, and the first batch will commence from the current month of October 2019. It is a 6-month programme conducted online which consists of video lectures, coding assignments, mentor interactions, real-time webinars, industrial projects and many more. It also includes a 2-month Internship so that the learning becomes synchronised with the industry-specific requirements. Once the teaching part is over, all the students are placed in big tech giants. There is a pool of more than 170 companies consisting of Amazon, Ola, Zomato and others. There is no upfront fees and only once the student lands a job, they will start paying us back in small installments. The amount is a very small portion of their monthly salary.
A scene from one of the Coding Ninjas workshops
Tell us about the faculty that is a part of the team?
Coding Ninjas has a pool of faculty from some of the best educational institutes like Stanford University, IITs, IIITs and DTU. Add to this, their relevant industrial experience of working with the biggest tech companies like Facebook, Amazon, Adobe etc and we get an exceptional blend. Unlike other platforms, we have an in-house team of faculty consisting of Ankush Singla, Nidhi Agarwal, Rohan Arora, Arpan Garg, Manisha Khattar, Parikh Jain, Navdeep Sandhu and Md Afzal.
How is the EdTech sector evolving?
With the emergence of technologies and children becoming tech-savvy young, the EdTech sector has quickly penetrated the schools, colleges and homes in the last 3-4 years. There has been a tectonic shift that has positively impacted the way we teach and learn. People from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities too are now aware of the latest education technology and up-skilling yourself is more important than ever to stay relevant in the industry. We, at Coding Ninjas, always feel that Education has the right amount of power to bring a change in society. Learning in our education system is not customised and everyone is supposed to learn (and run) at the same pace. We provide courses that are "self-paced" , "accessed from anywhere" and "industry-vetted" thereby ensuring opportunities for everyone. In order to remove the "inequality in access to quality education" based on economic terms or across different Tier of cities, we started with the Career Camp. This ensures that you can learn from anywhere and only pay once you start earning a good salary.