Two people with technical genius partnered with intentions of changing the world of education and they're doing it. If you haven't heard the names Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng, you will be. Daphne Koller, the Rajeev Motwani Professor in the computer science Department at Stanford University and Andrew Ng, Associate Professor of Computer Sciences at Stanford and the Director of Stanford's Artificial Intelligence Lab, are the Founders and Co-CEO's of Coursera.Org.
Huge visions often require huge funding and for Coursera.Org, to date ,they've received more than$16million in funding with the help of John Doerr, Partner Kleiner Perkins Caufield&Byers, and Scott Sandell, General Partner NEA.
To change the world of education Coursera.Org now has entered into partnerships with 33 Universities. These partnerships make it possible for Coursera to offer a class schedule of more than 200 University courses online with even course offerings planned for the near future. Students who enroll in these courses will be receiving this education tuition-free.
In order to make their dreams a reality, Coursera. Org needed a team, a highly technically capable team with a passion for their mission and they have found a talented team to make this happen.
On a closer look what the Coursera.Org Founders have structured you'll note that they currently have grown significantly to more than 30 staff members. Their top-notch team have highly diverse backgrounds ,with one exception: more than half of the Coursera.Org staff members have attended Stanford University.
Here's some insight into their team: Coursera has Jiguan Ngiam, Director of Engineering; Frank Chen, Software Engineer; Pang Wei Koh, Head of Course Operations; and Leith Abdulla, A SCII Architect.
Leith said," I am currently a life-long learner who envisions a better sustainable world evolving out of increased contact with each other, a better understanding of our world, the end of ageing, and an increased use of peanut butter."
There's Software Engineer, Huy; Office Manager, Zane Brown; Course Operation, David Unger, an Independent filmmaker and musician; Software Engineer, Daniel Chia; and Course Operations, Diane Lee.
In Business Development you'll find Chris Heather and Lal Jones-Bey. Lal says," I came to Coursera.Org because I'm pretty excited about using technology to improve education around the world."
Bipin Suresh and Jerry Charumilind are Back-end Engineers;while Pamela Fox is a Front-end Engineer;Nick Dellamaggiore ,Colleen Lee, Brennan Saeta,Jean Feng, Zhenghoo Chen, and Jacob Lyles are Software Engineers.
Jacob shared ," I want to lower the barrier to entry to a high-quality education for every person in the world who wants one." Zhenghoo told us why he joined the team," As an undergraduate I worked with Andrew and Daphne on machine learning and computational biology and I'm hoping to help them change the world for the better by improving education here at Coursera."
There's Clara NG ,Norian Caporale-Berkowitz, and Ryan George (from Nebraska) in Course Operations; Chuong Do, Software Engineer;Julia Stightz, Anne Trumbore, and Relly Brandman in Course Operations; and Minjeong Kim, a Designer.
Jerry Charumilind explained why he's part of Coursera," I'm here to pay it forward on a grand scale and being surrounded by like-minded people make it fun to boot."
Office Manager, Julia Alperovich said, "it's incredibly rewarding to be part of a family-like company that strives to revolutionize education."
Designer Payam Rajabi said , " I am fascinated not just by how people connect with technology, but how technology connects with people."
For those who might be interested in job opportunities at Coursera.Org, Sangeeta Narayan is the Head of Recruiting and Renee Glenn is the Recruiting Coordinator.
Now that you've been introduced to most of the team, you're probably interested in which Universities are involved in this partnership and about the types of courses that students can enroll in online for free.
How will it feel for students to be able to say they have completed a course taught by a professor from: Venderbilt University, Stanford University, Wesleyan University, Princeton, Rice Univesity, Berklee College of Music, Brown University, California Institute of Technology, Columbia University, Duke University, or Ecole Polytechnique Federal de Lausanne?
How cool would it be learn online with professors from Georgia Institute of Technology, Hebrew University of Jersalem, John Hopkins University, Ohio State University, The University of Edinburgh, University of Pittsburgh, University of Pennsylvania, University of Florida, University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, or The University of Melbourne.?
The roster of universities who have partnered with Coursera.org also includes the University of Michigan, University of Virginia, The University of California -Irvine, University of California-San Francisco, University of Toronto, University of London International Programs, Icahn School of Medicine Mount Sinai, Emory University, University of Maryland- College Park, and the University of Washington.
The course offerings include a huge variety of courses and with more than 200 of them on the current schedule there isn't enough space in this article to share them all, so here's a sample.
According to the schedule, many of the current course offerings run from six to ten weeks.
"Science from Superheros to Global Warming, " Professor Michael Dennin, University of California-Irvine
"Data Analysis," Professor Jeff Leek, John Hopkins University.
"Fundamentals of Human Nutrition," Professor Kristina Von Castel Roberts, Ph.D, University of Florida.
"Intro to the US Food System:Perspectives for Public Health," Professors Robert S. Lawrence and Keeve Nachman,John Hopkins University.
"Mathematical Biostatistical BootCamp," Professor Brian Caffo, John Hopkins University.
"Healthcare Innovation and Entrepreneurship," Professors Bob Barnes and Marilyn M. Lombardi, Duke University.
"Principles of Microeconomics," Professor Rebecca Stein, University of Pennsylvania.
"Developing Innovative Ideas for New Companies," Professor Dr. James V Green, University of Maryland-College Park.
"The Language of Hollywood: Storytelling,Sound and Color," Professor Scott Higgins, Wesleyan University.
"Pre-Calculus," Professor Sarah Eichorn,Ph.D. and Rachel Cohen Lehman, Ph.D., University of California-Irvine.
"Critical Thinking in Global Challenges," Professors Mayank Dutia and Celine Caquineau, University of Edinburgh, Scotland.
"Probabilistic Graphic Models," with Professor and CEO of Coursera.Org , Daphne Koller.
The mission of Coursera.Org is " to give everyone access to world-class education that has so far been available to only a select few. We want to empower people with education that will improve their lives, the lives of their families, and the communities they live in."