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Coding Autism

Coding Autism

Online coding academy specifically designed for autistic learners

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Company Overview

Mission Statement

Our mission is to help empower autistics to reach their maximum potential in their careers, studies, and lives.

What We Do

Coding Autism is building and facilitating the first autism specialized coding academy, pairing online coding education, community, and an autism-savvy support team to help transition autistic talent into our technology workforce. We provide project-based and in-demand coding curriculum, experienced mentors and career counselors, and on-call tutoring and soft skills support to help provide autistic students an alternative form of education that is catered to their strengths.

Brief Background on Autism

What is Autism?

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In 1994, autism was redefined as being a wide spectrum of conditions ranging from non-verbal and more significant impairment, to Asperger's Syndrome, which is considered to be a more "high functioning" version of autism. Some notable figures who are or are speculated to have Asperger's Syndrome are Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Burton, Temple Grandin, Albert Einstein, Mozart, and Bill Gates.

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Typical Autism Characteristics

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Notable Autism Statistics

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Economic Costs of Autism

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Autism in the Workforce

Research has shown that typical autistic characteristics such as attention to detail, affinity for repetitive tasks, and introversion are all traits that lend themselves to becoming a successful employee within the tech industry. For this reason, some researchers have dubbed autism the “Geek Syndrome”. With the $50k+ average annual salary for entry-level, full-time web developers, tech is an attractive industry to pursue careers in.

Over the last decade, companies such as Microsoft and SAP have implemented autism hiring initiatives. This was done not to combat autistic unemployment or for corporate social responsibility, but because they have seen that adults with autism can be exceptional employees and drive innovation when provided the right structure, mentorship, and on-boarding.

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Corporate Autism Statistics

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Positive Characteristics of Autistic Employees in the Workforce

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Why We Started Coding Autism

It is completely unacceptable that our autistic community is experiencing an over 80% unemployment and underemployment rate. As passionate advocates who have either been diagnosed with autism ourselves or have family members affected with autism, we understand that with the right resources, training, coaching, and environment that individuals with autism can thrive in the workforce, demonstrating themselves as highly qualified and dedicated employees.

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By founding Coding Autism and launching our online coding academies, we are moving one step closer towards slashing the 80% unemployment and underemployment, and in turn creating highly qualified, skilled, and eager to work autistic employees to fill job vacancies in the tech industry.

What Problems Does Coding Autism Solve

Coding Autism solves three major problems.

1.) The Un/Underemployment of autistic adults:

According to a 2013 report published in the journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, only 20% of autistic adults work for pay, the vast majority of them making only minimum wage and averaging at $8.10 per hour. A lot of this research attributes to the lack of educational resources provided to autistic adults once they complete high school as well as the "ageing out" effect that takes place when an autistic individual turns 21 and loses all federal funding through the IDEA act and other federal funding for individuals with disabilities. Without the proper guidance, mentoring, and educational resources geared specifically to individuals on the spectrum, history has shown and proven itself that autistic individuals struggle with the transition into adulthood and end up not reaching their highest potential.

With a program like CA, we alleviate the concerns people with autism (and their families) have about finding employment.

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2.) Satisfying job vacancies from technology and software companies

In the US today, IT/Computer jobs are expected to increase by 22% by 2020. Additionally, there are over 500,000 vacant technology jobs currently available in the United States ranging in professions from software engineering, website development, app development, etc.

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Although there are an excessive amount of job vacancies and openings in the United States technology sector, many Americans are either unfit for these positions, do not want to relocate to these positions, etc. These results inevitably result in many hiring companies carrying out (offshoring) their recruitment practices abroad, which requires not only a VISA, but it is also more expensive way to conduct recruitment.

With a program like Coding Autism, we can train adults with autism (who back by research have proven to thrive in technology and software positions) in skill sets that will make them attractive and qualified candidates for many of the vacant positions available in the tech industry today.

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3.) Lack of educational programs available for autistic individuals after high school/become adults.

Once people with autism turn 22, they "age out" of many government benefits, such as the IDEA act . This puts them in a position where unless they have supportive families to guide them in the right direction, they tend to stagnate. Also, the majority of educational programs from universities to career transitioning programs are not catered to autistic learners, thus leaving them at a disadvantage.

How Coding Autism Will Solve These Problems

Through our online coding academies, we are creating a learning environment where autistic learners can thrive and obtain the skills necessary to obtain employment within the technology industry.

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Since May 29th 2018, Coding Autism has deployed their online part-time and full-time python and react coding academies in partnership with Bottega Tech. Details on both offerings are provided below.

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Part-time Online Python & React Program

Students will log into Coding Autism’s online, self-paced, and white labeled coding portal in DevCamp to access the coding curriculum. Students will be provided with a technical mentor provided by Bottega who assists them with developing structured calendars for accomplishing tasks week by week to ensure that each learners has an excellent learning experience. These mentors can be requested M-F from 8am-9pm PST via email and Zoom conference calls. If a student devotes 30-40 hours a week on the course, they can finish the program in about 7-9 months and if a student devotes 15-25 hours a week on the course they can finish the program in about 4-6 months.

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Full-time Online Python & React Program

Students will learn the coursework in a webinar-style format where they will log into a Zoom conference room with the instructor and other students in the course M-F from 8am-4pm PST. Students will log into DevCamp and work through the lessons provided by the instructor. After the webinar finishes, students will work on coding assignments individually and with other students in the course. Additionally, students have access to technical mentors provided by Bottega Tech via email and zoom conference calls.

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Future Offerings

In November 2018, Coding Autism will launch a Cybersecurity Program in partnership with Cybrary.

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Through our partnership with Bottega, Coding Autism also has the capability of immediately going to market with a Data Science, Ruby on Rails, and Front-end Web Development offering. Coding Autism will plan on launching these programs as our demand for the programs increase.


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Coding Autism also has plans to launch proprietary programs in topics such as Quality Assurance/Software Testing, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, JavaScript, Android & iOS Development, and Data Analytics.

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Additionally, Coding Autism will eventually roll out services for the following.

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By providing autism specialized and high quality training to our students, we are creating opportunities where we can move the needle for autism unemployment and underemployment and in turn replace vacant technology jobs with exceptional autistic talent.

We can also make the same impact through innovative collaborations with government organizations (ex. Regional Centers, Department of Rehabilitation, etc.), corporations, industry leaders, and beyond.

Market Opportunity

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Autism Population Market Size

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TAM, SAM & SOM for Business Model

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Notable Subsidization Opportunities for Coding Autism Tuition Prices

Admittedly, the tuition price for our programs is on the higher side. However, it is consistent with the Coding Bootcamp median tuition price of about $11,000. Given the autism specificity of our program, we will need to charge a slightly more premium price point in order to be able to provide additional support and soft skills counselors for our program.

Fortunately, there are various solutions that can be implemented to help subsidize tuition prices for interested students in Coding Autism. The solutions mentioned below will help with enabling low-income to middle-income autistic students and households afford the programs offered by Coding Autism.

  • Tuition prices can be paid for by government organizations, grants, and other funding initiatives
    • Ex. Department of Rehabilitation, Regional Centers, Department of Labor, Grants from Autism Speaks, Autism Society of America, etc.).
    • Given that our program specifically focuses on training adults with autism, there are a lot more funding opportunities present for our business model than a traditional coding academy.
  • Student financing options available for students
    • Ex. Skills.Fund, Climb Credit, and Private Student Loan Lending
    • Provide affordable 3 to 5 year financing plans for students to enroll into coding programs that provide minimal payments for 6 months and then balloon (6 months is rough estimate of time it takes to finish coding academy and secure job).
    • Financing even more affordable depending on credit.
  • Scholarship funding via corporations can compensate student tuitions.
    • Ex: Microsoft, SAP, or HP providing a scholarship for several students to enroll into Coding Autism's programs or Auticon paying coding autism a major sum to train selected students by Auticon through our programs for them.

Why Coding Autism is Unique

Coding Autism in unique in the fact that there are no other companies that provide the hybrid combination of autism specificity, and immersive coding instruction that trains individuals in entry-level coding skills, and on-going career counseling and job placement services. In short, Coding Autism is a one-stop shop for adults with autism who want to learn a valuable professional coding skill set, obtain quality mentorship/coaching and career counseling, and job placement in the tech industry.

What is Coding Autism's Value Proposition

Coding Autism's value proposition is as follows

1.) Autism Specificity

2.) Mentorship/Advocacy

3.) Career Preparation and Training

4.) Portfolio Building and Job Placement

5.) Socialization and Networking

What is Coding Autism's Competitive Advantage?

Coding Autism's competitive advantage comes from the autism specificity that is involved in their programs. Coding Autism offers small class sizes, autism specialized learning, networking and job placement opportunities catered to diversity and inclusion hiring initiatives, lifelong coaching and mentorship, and a community for individuals with autism to interact and feel comfortable in, all of which is partially or not covered at all by our competitors.

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Why Coding Autism Will Be Successful

1.) There is research from reputable sources that states that the characteristics of individuals on the autism spectrum have a positive correlation with the characteristics of the successful software employee.

2.) The statistics show that un/underemployed autistic individuals are there to satisfy the job vacancies in entry-level and upper level positions in the United States.

3.) That there is a rapidly growing number of autistic individuals in both the United States and the world (1-59 born today).

4.) We have an excellent and passionate team of co-founders and advisors that are willing to work day and night to make Coding Autism a success.

With the current problems in both the autism community, we are very confident that the above features will make Coding Autism a successful and thriving business with major social impact in the autism community.

What are Coding Autism's B2C and B2B Consumers?

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What Would The Funding Be Used For

Coding Autism is raising $150,000 to compensate the following expenses

  • Compensation to Founding Team and new hires (along with vested equity) for Next 6 Months
    • Considering on-boarding 3-4 more members of the team
      • Technical/coder (experience in curriculum development, coding academy experience, etc),
      • Business development / Sales
      • PR
      • IT / Technical Recruiter
  • Marketing budget to promote Coding Autism's services via Adwords, Facebook/IG ads, etc
    • Will significantly increase enrollments and exposure to consumers, partners, etc
  • Administrative/Operational Costs
    • Ex. website management, e-mail marketing software, etc
    • Increases runway 1+ years
  • Development of proprietary curriculums
    • Quality Assurance / Software Testing
    • Soft Skills Assessments
    • JavaScript
    • Android/iOS Development
    • Data Analytics

Exit Strategy

1.) Acquisition

The realistic exit strategy for Coding Autism would most likely be an acquisition by another company.

Coding Autism can see themselves being acquired by an established coding academy such as a General Assembly or Thinkful, an established education / EdTech company such as a 2U or Coursera, or other potential acquisitions such as WeWork (expanding their education offerings), Microsoft and SAP (to help expand their autism hiring initiatives) or Specialisterne (to expand their footprint in developing autism initiatives within organizations).

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Investors would be paid out based on the company purchase price and deal terms.

Where Does Coding Autism See Itself in 5 Years?

1.) Expanded physical offerings throughout the US in major tech cities such as San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Austin.

2.) Developing programs and services geared towards children, teenagers, parents of autistics, corporations, non-profit organizations, and more.

4.) Expanding our program offerings outside of tech in various industries such as bookkeeping, accounting, sciences, engineering, etc.

5.) Developing a global alumni and mentorship portal that Coding Autism graduates and students have exclusive access to

6.) Developing partnerships through OPM's with college universities to build out programs specifically designed for autistic students

7.) Filed as a certified B-Corporation and having a non-profit component of their business

8.) Training and employing over 10,000 adults on the autism spectrum and be partnered with over 250 companies for autism recruiting efforts.

9.) Potentially acquired in 5-10 years

Background of CEO / Influence in Autism Community

When Oliver was two years old, he was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, shortly after his older brother was diagnosed with autism. This was in 1994, when autism was redefined as being on a wide spectrum ranging from high-functioning Asperger's syndrome to more severe cases of autism consisting of individuals who are non-verbal and need constant supervision and medical resources. At the time, doctors had informed Oliver's parents that his brother would not speak in their entire lifetime and that they were both bound to lives of social isolation, lack of financial independence, and compromised opportunities.

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To say the least, the doctors were wrong. In fact, Oliver successfully graduated as a Business Management major from California Lutheran University (CLU), has become the CEO of his own business (Coding Autism), obtained his real estate broker's license, spoke at a TEDx event, was the recipient of his universities "Outstanding Young Alumni of the Year" award, and has accomplished many other impressive feats. On the other hand, Trinity did not only learn to speak at the age of 7, but also was able to successfully graduate from high school, obtain his real estate salesperson license, become an exceptional tennis player, and is currently studying architecture at Woodbury University in Burbank, CA.

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Later in Oliver's life, his younger brother (12 years old) was also diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome. This totaled 3 of 5 of Oliver's siblings (including himself) being diagnosed on the autism spectrum.

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Growing up on the spectrum, Oliver had always known that somewhere in his career that he would want to develop some form of an initiative that would help improve the lives of individuals on the autism spectrum but didn't know when he would. However, Oliver always challenged himself to take various business courses ranging from non-profit development, entrepreneurship, business management, etc so that he could learn about the business landscape, how various business structures, operated, and what it would take in order to run a successful business.

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The idea for developing Coding Autism came into fruition when he was in his senior year at CLU when taking the class "New Venture Development." The premise of that course was to develop a start-up concept throughout the semester that the student would enroll into CLU's "New Venture Competition" that consisted of learning about the various forms of entrepreneurship. The "aha" moment came from learning about the 80-90% autism un/underemployment rate that exists in the autism adult community, the emergence of coding bootcamps in the market place, and learning about the trends in the tech industry ranging from the job vacancies in the space, salary amounts of entry-level tech professionals, and the increases of salaries as tech employees become more advanced in their field.

Not only did Coding Autism end up being selected to participate in the finals of CLU's New Venture Competition, but the venture won the 1st place prize. This motivated Oliver to pursue the venture post graduation, which has been an unbelievable journey. Oliver truly looks forward to building Coding Autism and making a significant impact in the autism community with his venture.

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KPIs

6 Users
3 Employees
$30,000 Sales

Pitch Deck

Traction

  • Coding Autism announces development of a 1-1 stand-alone Career and College Counseling Program

    October, 2018
  • Coding Autism announces development of a 1:1 stand-alone Soft Skills Program

    September, 2018
  • Coding Autism announces that they will launch Cybersecurity Coding Program in partnership with Cybrary

    August, 2018
  • Coding Autism secures employment for their first Coding Bootcamp graduate at Auticon!

    October, 2018
  • Coding Autism announcement on their participation in Y Combinator's online Start-Up School program

    August, 2018
  • Coding Autism officially becomes a revenue driving business

    June, 2018
  • Coding Autism launches their Online Part-time and Full-time Python & React coding programs

    May, 2018
  • Coding Autism develops key curriculum licensing partnership with Bottega

    March, 2018
  • Coding Autism participates in MIT Solve's Brain Health challenge in NY

    September, 2017
  • Coding Autism successfully raises $52,855 in rewards based crowdfunding on StartSomeGood

    May, 2017
  • Coding Autism Incorporates as a California LLC

    June, 2016

Testimonials

Peter Souza
Peter Souza
Graduate of Coding Autism
"Growing up mostly alone and having only a few close friends, I didn't recognize that I was on the autism spectrum until I was 33 years old. Coding Autism has helped my career development in so many ways. It's helping me learn everything about the industry that I didn't know, and didn't know how to research. With Coding Autism I can now see the whole picture of the coding industry. I highly recommend the course to anyone on the autism spectrum looking to learn how to code."
Travis Garcia
Travis Garcia
Current Coding Autism Student
"When I graduated from college, I had a hard time finding a job because of my lack of experience with coding and it felt like I would never be employed. Then my mom told me about Coding Autism and I decided to enroll in it because I feel like it would help me get the experience that I need to get a job as a Web Developer. I think that this is a great opportunity for myself and others who have autism because of all the help and individualized support you’ll get from mentors, instructors, and counselors. "
Edlyn Pena
Edlyn Pena
Co-Director of California Lutheran University
"Coding Autism is filling a critical gap in services for young adults with autism. As a higher education researcher who studies postsecondary success of students with autism, I commend Coding Autism for preparing adults with autism for careers in the software and technology industry!"
Adam Ames
Adam Ames
Co-Founder of Boudoir Spirits | Potential Stu
"Coding Autism sounds like a program that not only caters to my technology skills, but can also really revolutionize my career opportunities. I am seriously considering enrolling into Coding Autism!"
Michael Panesis
Michael Panesis
Executive Director: Ctr of Entrepreneurship
"Coding Autism is that rare startup that has the potential to do good and be profitable. People with certain types of autism have exceptional skills but need extra assistance to unlock them. Coding Autism has the potential to do that in a spectacular way."
Ryan Costello
Ryan Costello
CEO of Event Farm | Industry Expert
"Coding Autism truly understands the needs growing companies face in the tech industry and has identified a very unique and socially conscious model that greatly benefits employees and employers."
Alon Goren
Alon Goren
CEO of 805 Start-Ups & InvestedIn and Co-Foun
"“Coding Autism is the one-stop shop from education/training to employment for individuals on the autism spectrum. As the founder and CEO of 805 Start-Ups, I have come across many startups; but Coding Autism has some serious potential to do great.” "
Elizabeth Brennan
Elizabeth Brennan
Associate Dean and Co-Director of California
"“Coding Autism brings forward-thinking support to the autism community. By using a strengths-based lens, Coding Autism provides valuable links between corporations and the individuals who will bring needed expertise to the job.”"
Greg Monterrosa
Greg Monterrosa
Community Manager at Hub 101
"Coding Autism’s mission really bring a much needed solution to coding and the autistic community. I am excited to see its growth and impact globally!”"
Daniel Ball
Daniel Ball
Head of Start-Up Incubator and Product Manage
"“With such a major need in the autism community to have a resource like Coding Autism this company has major potential.”"
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