Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple is launching a new portal ‘Woz U’ and thereby entering the education sector. Specializing in technology and career-based programs designed to promote technology jobs and the skills required to enter the industry, Woz U will start as an online learning platform focused on both students and companies that will eventually hire those students.
Woz U is based out of Arizona, and over time, Wozniak plans to launch as much as 30 physical locations across the globe, with courses ranging from software engineering and data science to mobile app development and cybersecurity, among others. Led by higher education experts, students will learn the skills necessary to take flight within the technology industry and receive a certificate of completion upon graduation.
As explained by Woz U’s official page, “Students have 24/7 access to online programs with live access to instructors and mentors, high-quality video-based curriculum, and comprehensive career services.”
Alongside the education platform, Woz U will also offer platforms for tech companies to recruit, train and retain their employees through on-site customized programs and subscription-based curricula. There will also be a platform for K-12 students, through a partnership with school districts as well.
Further, in the future, Woz plans to offer one-to-one instructions to students and also create its own accelerator program for prospective startup founders, to “identify and develop elite tech talent.”
The overall goal is to increase interest in what Woz U calls STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Mathematics) careers, with the addition of arts presumably a nod to Wozniak’s role at Apple and Steve Job’s lifelong mission to blend technology with humanities.
“Our goal is to educate and train people in employable digital skills without putting them into years of debt. People often are afraid to choose a technology-based career because they think they can’t do it. I know they can, and I want to show them how. My entire life I have worked to build, develop and create a better world through technology and I have always respected education. Now is the time for Woz U, and we are only getting started,” Wozniak said in a statement.
It’s unclear whether Woz U courses will be offered for free on the online education platform, or they plan on charging for any of the existing or planned features. As of yet, there’s no word on pricing, although a mobile app is already available with some introductory courses. It should also be noted that Woz U is partnered with the private & for-profit Southern Careers Institute (SCI), based out of Austin, Texas. So we can’t expect everything in Woz U to be free.
You can also enroll yourself with Woz U starting today, though it’s unclear what exactly that entails beyond submitting your personal contact information.