I didn’t start Praxis because I think college is bad, or because I want to convince people it is. I didn’t start it to be hip and trendy and “disruptive”. I didn’t start it because I want to point out problems with the world. I started it because I want to create value for individuals.
There are a lot of young people hungry for valuable experiences and not finding them. There are a lot of young people unhappy with the education, career, and life options they see before them, searching for something more. Praxis exists for you.
Praxis is more than a program or a company to me. It’s the embodiment of a mindset and a way of life. It is a tangible way to help people live free, self-directed lives. It’s a community and a set of resources and ideas and businesses and participants built around the understanding that no conveyor belt can lead you to the life you want, and no structure you don’t choose and create yourself will bring you fulfillment.
Praxis is a concrete opportunity, not a vague notion. It offers an interesting, challenging, amazing job and an interesting, challenging, amazing self-guided educational experience, all with a relentless focus on deliverable results. It’s a recognition that your life will be determined by the quality of your product more than the pedigree of your paper. It’s a way to remove the fear and doubt and strictures of the linear ladder to imagined success. It’s a way to reveal and fan into flame the deep human love of adventure, play, possibility, and experimentation.
I don’t believe doing things you don’t like and hoping it leads to unspecified things you do like is a recipe for success. Praxis pushes you to define what you don’t like and what you do, to learn what you’re good at and what you’re not, to identify definite outcomes you wish to achieve and definite causality between those outcomes and your desired next step. Praxis does not ask you to learn things or perform tasks in the hope that it will get you work experience, we give you that work experience from the start. You cannot separate learning from doing.
Praxis is a recognition that, wherever you get your paycheck, you are your own firm. The future does not belong to those who follow orders, but those who solve problems with creativity. The future belongs to entrepreneurs, whether founders or builders within firms. Entrepreneurial thinking and acting cannot be learned from study, but must be practiced. Praxis exists to put those eager to learn it into environments right now – not tomorrow, not after more study and certification – where they can be around and become entrepreneurs.
Praxis exists to offer a valuable service to young people who are searching for a way to build their confidence, skills, experience, network, and knowledge. Praxis is built upon questions like, “Why not now?”, and “Why not me?”
Praxis is about that powerful combination of big picture dreamers and blue-collar doers. It’s all the imagination of Silicon Valley startups with all the work-ethic of Midwestern small businesses. It’s grit plus grind plus greatness. Praxis is the realization that the most radical thing you can do is often the most practical, and that the most practical thing you can do is sometimes be radical.
Praxis is an idea. The idea is simple. Find the best way to get from where you are to where you want to be. If we can help you do that better and faster with a great job that comes with a great education and community, jump in. If not, we’ll still be rooting for you every step of the way.
I didn’t start Praxis to make enemies or to make friends. I started it to create value. I started it because the idea was so powerful I had no choice but to bring it into the world. I started it because theorizing about ways young people could build their lives wasn’t enough. I started it because it’s fun, fulfilling, and harder than anything I’ve ever done. I wouldn’t have it any other way.