Austen Allred is CEO and co-founder of Bloomtech (formerly Lambda School). Bloomtech is an online platform that educates future software engineers and scientists for free. In exchange, Bloomtech alumni give a share of their future income for two years.
Austen also never enjoyed or appreciated academia. A native of rural Utah, it was not something he felt connected to. But one thing he knew for sure was that he wanted to live and work in Silicon Valley. Oh, and work in tech.
But he didn’t have the money to do that. So what did he do?
He moved anyway and slept in his two door Honda Civic whilst working a full time job.
It was living in Silicon Valley that opened his eyes to the gap in opportunities back in his hometown. Utah didn’t lack brains or talent, but some people just couldn’t afford to invest $20k+ into their education. For some people, it was a huge financial risk.
So when Austen Allred decided to build Bloomtech, it was initially about taking a school, putting it online and making it accessible no matter your upbringing.
Problem 2: he didn’t have the money to start Bloomtech.
He had to get creative. Austen co-founded a media platform named GrassWire and co-authored Secret Sauce, a growth-hacking textbook which quickly became a best-seller. This provided him with the personal seed money ($250,000) to create and launch Bloomtech in 2018. As well as the support and experience from being part of the 2017 Y-Combinator cohort.
What began as a monthly group of 20 people, turned into 250 people a month. They have since graduated over 3000 students. The majority of those placed into high-paid jobs at companies like Apple and Google. The team includes 40 full time employees and 80 part time.
Some students would come in making less than $30,000 and they leave with a salary of $70,000. A student and his wife were making $22,000 combined before joining Bloomtech. That student is now making a sole income of $110,000.
Sharing his rewarding moments and success stories, you feel inspired by his motivation to help people financially.
“It’s not about the stats, it’s about that girl who finally has her own bedroom for the first time.”
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