Yesterday I stopped by General Assembly, an “urban campus for entrepreneurs seeking to transform industry and culture through technology and design.”  There are about 30 companies housed at the Manhattan business incubator.

General Assembly is also a community of a few hundred people, some associated with companies, so not.  General Assembly provides weekly classes with an emphasis in tech, design, entrepreneurship.  About half the classes are taught by resident experts.

General Assembly pays attention to design—the 20,000 square foot incubator has lots of open collaborative space.  The partners think learning and entrepreneurship are inherently social, so they sweat the details of online and onsite work space.

The guys at General Assembly collaborate with our friends at Startl on a couple learning startups.


Other the other coast, ImagineK12 picked its first batch of startups as reported by TechCrunch, “The company sorted through some 200 applications, interviewed 36 startups and made offers to ten startups for the first class this summer. All accepted, took an average of $20,000 in funding for an average of 6% of their equity, and moved to Silicon Valley.”  Learn Capital looks forward to attending the first Imagine K12 demo day in September.


On the subject of startups, Zuckerberg’s Newark fund, Startup: Education will prove to be influential and could connect Newark to the growing edtech hub in NYC.  In addition to NYC, Edtech clusters have some density include the Bay Area, DC, and Boston.  Second tier clusters with potential: Seattle, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Raleigh.  Chambers of Commerce pay attention: edTech is the new biotech.


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Tom Vander Ark is author of Difference Making at the Heart of Learning, The Power of Place, Better Together, Smart Parents, Smart Cities and Getting Smart. He is co-founder of Getting Smart and serves on the boards of Education Board Partners, 4.0 Schools, Digital Learning Institute, Latinx Education Collaborative, Mastery Transcript Consortium and eduInnovation. Follow Tom on Twitter, @tvanderark.


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