Looking Towards 2024 and Beyond: Transitions and Changes at App Academy

News & Announcements
Written by:
Kush Patel (Founder & CEO)
Published on:
November 15, 2023
app academy branded image

Starting in November 2023, we are restructuring the company and implementing wide scale programmatic changes in service of our students’ outcomes and experiences.

Today, we are announcing several changes at App Academy to set our students and our school up for success in 2024 and beyond. These changes do not impact students in our currently active cohorts. We are restructuring the company and implementing wide scale programmatic changes in service of student outcomes and experience. We are taking these steps in response to several changes in market demand. Since the beginning of the year, we’ve seen a smaller set of students that are interested in coding bootcamps, as well as a more challenging hiring market for software engineers. At the same time, we’ve also seen a move towards employer sponsored models.

To ensure that we can continue to drive best-in-class job outcomes for our graduates now and in the future, we are doubling down on building and scaling the pipeline from our B2C bootcamps into our Enterprise training cohorts. We are already seeing early success sending App Academy grads directly into short, company-specific training programs that we’ve designed with our Enterprise partners to lead directly into jobs.

As we align more closely with employer demand, we will also be making a number of changes to our programs. We are improving our preparatory and deferral experiences so that students are better set up for success. This year we made significant investments in tech and systems to support our teachers and coaches, and we will increase these efforts in 2024. We are also moving our 16 week accelerated bootcamp fully online, opening up access to students across the country.

With these changes, some staff will be moving into new roles. We have also made the difficult decision to let go of 31% of our staff. Several of the impacted staff will be leaving today, while most will be phasing out of their roles over the next twelve months. We failed to hit our goals, and to move forward, we must lose some excellent people. I am deeply grateful for all that these team members have contributed. App Academy would not be where it is today without them.

As we reorient our investments across the company, I want to stress that App Academy is fundamentally stable and that we have access to secured capital. While market demand for coding bootcamps is lower, we’ve seen several quarters where that demand has been stable at a “new normal”. The changes we’re making today set App Academy up to operate successfully, profitably, and deliver great outcomes in the face of new market realities.

Going Forward

We are taking several significant steps to reshape our program design in order to best serve our students. These updates are informed by market demand data as well as our conversations with many stakeholders over the past few months. In planning these changes, we’ve kept a focus on our north star of student outcomes.

  • In 2024, we will be starting cohorts less often. This will allow us to build in flex time for our Instruction team so that they can have more direct involvement in our prep experience, support a more community-based approach in the deferral experience, and participate more directly in curriculum development.

    Starting with the new 2024 cohorts, our 24-week Full-Time program is shifting toward a model where our learners will stick with the same instruction team for three modules, rather than only one. This will enable more continuity through the program.

    With these changes, coupled with fewer cohorts, we will phase out our most junior teaching assistant role in 24-week Full Time beginning with 2024 cohorts. Learning from our prior experience, we will phase out the instruction roles impacted by these program changes over the course of twelve months so that students face a less abrupt transition and instructors have more time to prepare.
  • We are now offering one nationwide accelerated course and as a result winding down our campus in NYC. With the shift in demand toward remote-learning programs, this move online will keep the 16 week bootcamp as relevant to the most highly motivated, prepared learners as it was when we initially launched it 11 years ago. Consolidating our physical campuses into one online offering will increase access to our industry leading accelerated course.
  • To give our customers a consistently high level of service, we will enable instructors and coaches to focus on the higher level work that they are best at. We’ll do this by leveraging internal and external software, AI, as well as external contractors to help our staff with various tasks. These efforts will offer us the rare opportunity to improve our student outcomes while also being able to drive down prices long-term.
  • We are significantly improving our Prep product to drive stronger student performance in the early weeks of our bootcamps. This streamlined experience will be a single entry point into our programs, with both self-paced and live classroom options available based on the learners’ existing skill sets. Our focus is to ensure our prep experience is the strongest on-ramp to our core products.

As a whole, these changes will set our students and our school up for success in 2024 and beyond. I continue to be very optimistic about App Academy long-term. Our offerings become more compelling by the year. My commitment to our vision of global access to software engineering careers remains as strong as ever.

The future is bright for App Academy.


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