Kai '18 in Swing Education

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Written by Riho and Cynthia

Riho Kawamoto, class of 2021, is interested in Sociology and French Studies.

Cynthia (Xinyue) Zhang is a freshman from Shenzhen, China and a prospective major in the College of Social Studies with a minor in Data Analysis. You can always find her procrastinating over her History and Philosophy papers or binge drinking boba tea. 

Swing Education is a small educational startup with 20-30 employees. It was founded to address the national shortage of substitute teachers in the U.S. and helps matching up substitute teachers and schools through their platform. Swing is a national company with coverage in several states and still expanding their market. On average, they process more than 500 requests a day and has tens of thousands of substitute teachers on their site. We had a great experience meeting with Carl Steib, Head of Customer Success Lead, Lulu Lin, a product manager and Julian Portis, a newly recruited software engineer from Wesleyan. They described the business model of Swing to be similar to Uber's, because they match up substitute teachers and schools in need of substitute teachers. Substitute teachers finish a survey when they first start to work with Swing, and Swing will match them up with schools based on a series of factors

What was unique and great about this experience was that we got to split up into small groups to discuss with people in Swing Education. We had the chance to talk with Carl, who has worked in Swing for one and a half year as the Customer Success Lead. We talked about his international experiences in Japan and China, and his path to the Education industry as a liberal arts college grad majoring in East Asian Studies. It was a very enriching and thought-provoking experience to talk with him, as he offered a lot of insight on topics like how education is going to move forward under the rapid development of technology and the tension between profit maximization and social responsibility in the education industry. Carl describes Swing as an intersection of achieving profitability and positive social impact. 

 One of the other groups talked with Lulu the product manager about her product management career at Swing and other companies like Facebook and several other startups. 

One of the other groups talked with Lulu the product manager about her product management career at Swing and other companies like Facebook and several other startups. 

 Julian, a newly employed software engineer at Swing talked to us about his path from a College of Social Studies major to the Silicon Valley and how he learned programming skills outside of the classroom. 

Julian, a newly employed software engineer at Swing talked to us about his path from a College of Social Studies major to the Silicon Valley and how he learned programming skills outside of the classroom.