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General Assembly

About

General Assembly is a 21st century education institution that is redefining higher education by focusing on in-demand practical skills and education-to-employment experiential programs.

Our vision is a global community of individuals empowered to pursue work they love. Our mission is to grow that community by transforming a generation of thinkers into creators.

Reviews

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Raffi
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

GA Business Acc

I took General Assembly's Business Accelerator program in NYC. The GA program helped me understand the fundamentals behind creating a successful business and the importance of figuring out a unique value proposition early on. I acquired many skills that I can transfer into many industries. My instructors were professionals and they had work experience to back up the knowledge. I would recommend every student to consider studying abroad with GA.

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Lawrence
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Former UXDI student

As someone who does not study design at school, it’s difficult to create a portfolio of well thought out and well executed work – time constraints normally mean that work is relegated to small design tasks or hackathon projects. GA’s UXDI course proved to be immensely valuable – not only did I learn how to develop a solid process as a designer, but I was also to work on different projects to help build up my portfolio. Without UXDI, I’m fairly confident I would not have had the expertise to be the designer I am currently.

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Matthew
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Web Development and So Much More

I have heard too many times from my peers that courses like this are only for people in the working world who want to change their careers. While that is the case for many people, the courses are applicable in many more ways. For me, it was exploring an interest I have had for years, but never had the chance to cultivate. For you, it could be that you want a job in the dev world after you graduate, or you want to learn how to build that idea that’s been sitting in your head forever. I truly believe I learned more applicable skills for my future field in those 14 weeks than I did in the previous year of school, which is awesome.
I would definitely recommend this program for anyone looking to get into the tech field. It will help you talk the talk and walk the walk, something that no course in a normal college environment can do.

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe slightly more engagement with the startup scene that exists in the area, but there were lots of meetups to attend.

Programs

Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Mercedes Bent

Job Title
General Manager of University Programs + Partnerships
Mercedes Bent, General Manager of University Programs + Partnerships, loves to scale businesses. She has a passion for nurturing innovative ideas into tangible products and then scaling them into mature, efficient organizations. Mercedes grew up in Silicon Valley where both of her parents worked in technology.
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What position do you hold at General Assembly? What has been your career path so far?

I'm responsible for building GA's 4th revenue-generating line of business through creating partnerships and programs for universities and colleges. I also manage the P&L and creating solutions that improve higher education.

I started out in finance, working as a Financial Analyst in the Private Wealth Management group at Goldman Sachs. I realized that I wanted to be in the tech world and ended up as the Education Programs Producer at GA. Looking back now, I had no idea how to look for a job or explore my interests while I was in college.

My three objectives for my first job were: make enough money to enjoy life, live in NYC, and do something where I could learn transferable skills. That is the reason I was so drawn to General Assembly, because I wanted to help people who were like me, that hadn’t explored their career options and needed relevant skills to do so. Since starting at GA I have had many positions including the Global Product Manager, the Global Director of Immersive Programs and the Head of New Ventures.

What is your favorite study or intern abroad memory?

I went to Shanghai, China for the summer of 2008 when the Olympics were being hosted there. I spent three months interning in finance in the aurora building where I had an incredible experience learning the ropes of the industry.

My internship was in Business Development at China Universal Asset Management. Through this internship, I was exposed to a whole different side of China by being able to see what the workforce culture was like. It was also my first internship that was finance related so it gave me the framework to continue down that path leading to my first job as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs.

What country have you always wanted to visit?

I have always wanted to go to India. I love the cuisine and think it would be a really cool culture to see. India is also supposed to be a very inspiring and refreshing place. I hope that I would be able to see all different parts of the country since it is so diverse. I really hope that I am able to go visit someday soon!

What's your favorite ethnic dish?

I love Samosas, another reason why I would love to go to India to try them there.

What unique qualities does your company possess?

GA has several unique qualities. The first is that we’re very focused on creating a global community of individuals empowered to pursue work they love. GA offers full-time immersive programs, long-form courses and classes and workshops on the most relevant current career skills from web development and user experience design, to business fundamentals, data science, product management and digital marketing.

Another unique quality of GA is that we’re an outcomes-based organization. We keep a focus on our graduates, making sure they receive the outcome they’re looking for whether that be leveling up in their current career, or transitioning to a new one.

Finally, GA provides education that appeals to almost all audiences by focusing on teaching as a specialized craft. We have a large team of instructional coaches with a lot of intensive teaching backgrounds that coach our instructors. These qualities combined make GA differ from other education companies.

Describe a time when you felt especially proud to be part of the General Assembly team.

I love our mission: to create a global community of individuals empowered to pursue work they love through tech education. Everyone at GA is extremely driven to improve education, create a world of more technologists and/or help people find meaningful careers in tech, business and design.

I also love the ability to be able to turn ideas into reality at GA. Earlier this year, I was able to launch the Opportunity Fund because others here, especially our co-founder Matt Brimer, recognized the need for increased diversity in tech, and put resources behind the initiative to make it a reality.

The Opportunity Fund provides scholarships for underrepresented groups such as women, African Americans/Latinos, veterans to take GA’s flagship Web Development Immersive program, a full-time coding school that turns a person from a beginner into a junior web developer. It’s our first big stab at tackling the problem of diversity in tech.