“I really think Praxis is cool and I think I would love to do what your participants do, but I already graduated from college. Is that a problem?”
This question comes my way more often than one would think. The popular narrative tells you that once you are graduated from college, your options are either totally-traditional-pipeline-to-graduate school or just taking the first, best paying job that comes your way. The idea that you could take a job that accelerates your career in a non-traditional path is totally foreign to most people.
In fact, about 1 in 3 Praxis participants are college graduates.
The participants came to Praxis for opportunity not afforded to them on the traditional graduate-from-college-and-just-take-a-big-corporate-job pipeline that most students see. They know that they can still get more out of their education and they don’t need to take out loans for a costly graduate school experience that will just delay the graduate-and-just-take-a-big-corporate-job pipeline experience.
If you’re a college graduate considering Praxis, here are 5 reasons why you should apply.
1. You Want More Than The Typical Job
If it is the Spring semester and you’re getting ready to graduate or you did graduate and have been looking at many of the job options most college grads flock to, you’ll probably see that most are the big employers in your region. The same handful of companies employ a ton of people. Sure, you could send a resume in and get an interview to be a ground-level analyst at your big regional bank, but that sounds boring. You want a job that will help you get up in the morning and get going — or at least will provide you with the opportunity to decide when you get up yourself and get going.
Praxis participants work at the companies that are oftentimes left out of the big recruiting events on campus. It’s not because these aren’t good companies — it’s because these companies are busy growing and creating value for their customers so they can’t afford to be at networking and recruiting events. A big bank or consulting group can afford to drop $200,000 on such an event — the startup or growing SMB can’t — they need that money to grow.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of companies in your area that you probably don’t even know about. These are companies creating real, substantive value for customers through services and products, but they’re not the ones that you are going to see at recruiting events.
These are some of the companies with which Praxis partners. We know that these owners and operators want to host young, ambitious talent, and are willing to provide the training and mentorship necessary to see them succeed. They come to Praxis for the opportunity to host people like this.
Past and current Praxis participants have closed over $1M in sales, run entire departments at their business partners, launched multi-million dollar rebranding and marketing campaigns, pitched investors, and have launched numerous projects of their own with the assistance of their business partners. All before the age of 25.
2. You Love Learning
Praxis alumni have told us that they learned more in one month of the Praxis education experience than in 4 years of college. I learned more in just setting it up than I had in the two years that I spent at my Ivy League school. And the education experience gets better every day.
The thing about the Praxis education experience that sets it apart from your college experience is that Praxis is molded to your specific goals. You get a Praxis advisor who works through one-on-one coaching sessions with you and who helps you design a monthlong program — called a Professional Development Project (download an example here).
You set your goals and get to work. Your Praxis advisors recommend a number of weekly tasks that will help you not only learn the information you need to learn, but also help you deliver on ways to show off that you actually know that information. This way, you can independently verify that, yes, you did actually learn what you studied. It goes so much further than your degree.
A lot of the college seniors I talk to who are interested in Praxis are those who actually love learning, they just feel that they didn’t get the full package when they were in college. The classes may have felt a little disjointed or just didn’t get to the information they needed or wanted to learn. They know they can do better with their education, so do we.
3. You Want to Build a Valuable Network
Ever since you were in high school, you probably heard people tell you about how valuable the network of people you meet in college is going to be for you. They may be right — it’s possible that some of your classmates will go on to become madly successful. But if they do, this isn’t going to be for some years.
Chances are you are looking around and wondering, “where is this madly valuable network that people mentioned to me?” If so, you aren’t alone.
Praxis offers you the college grad the opportunity to accelerate the growth of their network. By placing you into a growing business, you’ll get the opportunity to know everybody on your team, including the founder/CEO and the executive team. While your classmates are sitting at their jobs where their boss sits 10 floors above them and they only see them at one event per year, you’ll get to actually know, meet, and gain the knowledge and networks of successful individuals.
While your classmates may move off to live and work together in New York or in a neighborhood of your hometown, you can build a real network of people who are interested in working in and around you for more reasons than just you going to college with them.
The network you gain from Praxis is vertically diverse — meaning that the people you meet aren’t just in your own age cohort. They’re entrepreneurs, founders, business people, senior managers, investors, intellectuals, and more. You do meet peers — people who are excited about taking control of their lives and their careers like you are — but you also gain the added bonus of these people to whom you can turn when you need more.
4. You Want to Build Capital
More than anything else, Praxis provides you the opportunity to build capital — social and monetary. The net-cost of Praxis is zero dollars — you earn back at least everything that you pay and in some cases earn more. While you would be going into debt or spending all of your time applying for grants for grad school, you could be earning money with a Praxis business partner. While there, you’re building up your network through your company and through the Praxis network itself.
School puts off the building of capital — it makes you wait for the opportunity to save money and to build real networks.
We started Praxis with the cost of higher education in mind. We want it to be affordable. Not just so you don’t have to go into debt to do the program — but also because you should be spending your early career building up your capital so you can launch the venture of your dreams when that day comes.
5. You Want to Think Entrepreneurially
In a survey of the most affluent Americans, Thomas Stanley found that they credited “learning to think differently” as one of the most important characteristics for success. Similarly, being open to new ventures and seeing opportunities in the marketplace is what makes the most successful entrepreneurs. Doing this requires you to get experience — see what the world is really like, make the connections necessary, but more than anything else, learn to see opportunities. Hundreds of opportunities pass by the average person and the never jump on them. Praxis takes you into the throes of a growing business, places you near an entrepreneur, gets you on the ground working for the business, and provides you with the rigorous education necessary to start seeing opportunities.
You don’t have to want to be an entrepreneur to want to think entrepreneurially. Thinking in the way that an entrepreneur does — seeing opportunities that others pass up and jumping on it with the work and the follow-through necessary to execute on it — is what sets the great apart from the good and the normal.
Many Praxis alumni go on to work for other people — but they consider themselves entrepreneurs in the way that they have learned to think. They see opportunities — whether in sales, a side-gig, or in their day-to-day job — and can act on them, setting themselves apart from the pack.