As a company devoted to democratizing education, we are always aiming to reach further and touch more lives. Driven by the mantra of “students first” and the desire to see every student we teach be in demand, our hope is to see Nanodegree programs growing all over the globe. A year ago, that was all this was: a hope. But today, we have over 10,000 students enrolled!
One of our fastest-growing countries in student engagement and interest is India. It is already our second largest student base; perhaps not surprising as India boasts the world’s second largest developer population with 3 million software developers. With the right resources and focus, India has the potential to have the #1 developer population by 2018. Which makes today’s announcement all the more exciting for us.
Today, we are launching in India in partnership with Google and Tata Trusts. We know from experience that a Nanodegree credential can mean genuine and transformative change, and our launch partners at Google and Tata Trusts share this conviction. To that end, they will be offering 1,000 scholarships for the Android Developer Nanodegree program. Graduates of our Nanodegree program will also be invited to a career summit in early 2016 hosted by Google where they can meet Google and other prospective employers.
In India, we will offer all of our Nanodegree programs for Rs. 9,800 per month. As with all our Nanodegree offerings, we will refund half the tuition back to students upon graduation. The program, which takes an average of 6-9 months, is designed to give students a boost in income with a new job, or a promotion, at a fraction of the cost or time it would take offline.
Transforming lives probably sounds like lofty rhetoric, and we recognize it’s something easier said than done! But that’s why it’s all the more motivating for us when we hear how Udacity really is improving the lives of our students in ways big and small. Like Anu, a 30-year old working mom in Bengaluru. She’s been taking our Nanodegree program to make a career shift into big data at her current employer. And Aparna from Chennai, who took our free courses, and is now one of our more prolific project reviewers, earning a supplemental income that allows her to holiday in Europe. And Vishnu in Bangaluru, a recent Nanodegree graduate, who is working as a code reviewer as he completes his formal studies and looks to graduate in 2016 with real work experience under his belt.
We plan to set up operations on the ground in India, make several key hires, and announce partnerships with more local companies over the coming months. After spending years helping to build Udacity in Silicon Valley, I have moved to Asia and will be overseeing our expansion into India and other countries soon. It’s exciting to be moving across borders and learning more with all of you. As I learned in my first Udacity CS101 class over three years ago: Hello, World!