#SummerSkillsContest: What did you learn this summer?


Whether you’re perfecting your backstroke or learning a new barbecuing technique, summer is the perfect time to master a new skill. Share your summer skills success stories on Twitter with the hashtag #summerskillscontest for a chance to win $100 Udemy credit.

The contest will run from August 3, 2016, to August 10, 2016 (11:59pm PST). We will be picking two lucky winners August 11, 2016.

Read the full contest rules here.

Meet Udemy’s Summer 2016 interns

This special guest post comes from Srishti Jain, who’s interning with us for the second summer in a row. Take it away, Srishti!

Another summer, another fresh class of interns! I am back this summer on Udemy’s corporate marketing team and excited to become a contributor to our acclaimed blog and introduce my fellow interns. This year, we represent a variety of backgrounds and fields of study and are covering all areas of the company. Join me in welcoming them to Udemy!

René Babior, Growth
Washington University in St. Louis, Marketing and Economics/Strategy

P1760095_jpeg A Berkeley native, René is excited to be back in the Bay Area for a summer working with our growth team. He is researching the course discovery process of our users and hopes to find a way to optimize that experience. After graduation next year he hopes to launch a career in marketing and is excited about everything he has learned so far at Udemy. This summer he wants to catch up with friends and enjoy the beauty of the Bay Area.

Catherine Boran, Content
University of Chicago, Booth School of BusinessLinkedIn Photo
Catherine is the latest addition to our content team and is helping diversify our instructor base and bring quality courses to the Udemy platform. Her favorite part of Udemy is the people (followed closely by the snacks). She’s looking forward to hiking and surfing in the Bay Area this summer and hopes to own a goat farm in the future.

Joseph Chang, Udemy for Business
University of Chicago, Booth School of Business02_SkyDeck-6
Like Catherine, JC comes to us as an MBA intern from UChicago’s Booth School of Business. This summer he is working on marketing analytics for our Udemy for Business team. He has set his ambitions high and wants to follow in the footsteps of our CEO Dennis Yang. Over the summer he continues to work hard, learn, and meet new people.


Sadie Gill, Product
California State University, East Bay, Masters in Statisticsupload
A recent graduate, Sadie has joined our small but mighty product analytics team as a data analyst. She is studying user search behavior and brings a vast knowledge of statistics and analytics to the table. The people here are her favorite part of Udemy, and she is spending her free time this summer getting some sun. In the future she hopes to adopt more cats.

Danica Jacinto, Operations
Stanford Graduate School of BusinessP1760056_jpeg
With years of experience as an investment banker in Singapore, Danica is now exploring a career outside of financial services. In her role as an operations intern at Udemy, she is working on an audit of our infrastructure and company-wide tools. She loves her team here and is spending her weekends hiking around the Bay. In the future she hopes to complete her yoga teacher certification (she’s close!).

Michael Ligier, Growth
NYU Stern, Finance and Computer ScienceP1760101_jpeg
After a busy first year in New York City, Michael has joined our growth team to generate insights on the course selection experience. He’s still weighing his career options, but as a huge fan of musical theater, his immediate plans are to acquire “Hamilton” tickets. His favorite things about Udemy are the adjustable standing desks and unlimited Kettle Chips. Outside the office he is spending his summer going to concerts, soccer games, and new Japanese restaurants.

Federico Nigro, Product Design
General Assembly, Design
P1760115_jpegFederico is on our product design team this summer and taking on a meaty project: redesigning the sign-up flow for our mobile app. He recently graduated from General Assembly after completing an immersive UX design program. He loves the transparency at Udemy, and when not at work, he loves to spend time outdoors.

Michal Orkan, Legal
University of San Francisco, LLM in IP and Tech Law
Originally a lawyer in Israel, Michal recently completed a post-grad law degree program (LLM) at the University of San Francisco. She is assisting Udemy’s legal team with intellectual property-related matters and commercial contracting. She is excited to spend her summer learning and upping her game and loves Udemy’s company mission. Over the next few months she wants to continue to meet new people and find great foods in the area.

Ali Salahi, Content
University of California, Davis, Statistics and PhilosophyP1760050_jpeg
Ali recently completed a degree in statistics from UC Davis and has fittingly joined our content team as a data analytics intern. He is putting his machine-learning skills to the test while optimizing our spam review filter. He wants to continue to learn and thrive in this field, in keeping with Udemy’s motto to “Never stop learning.” Originally from the Bay Area, he is spending his summer reconnecting with friends and family.

Isabella Salazar, Finance
UCLA, Business EconomicsP1760036_jpeg
A lover of all things finance, Bella is excited to be on the finance team this summer. She thinks it will be a great experience and will help her decide what she wants to do in the future. She’s currently considering doing more research in the field of behavioral economics. For Bella, Udemy is the perfect place to learn about all parts of the business and experience start-up culture. This summer she is hoping visit SFMOMA, bike Crissy Field, and find the best macarons in town.

Haruna Yasui, Business Development
University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business

3712392Haruna is joining us as a business development intern after recently completing her MBA at the Haas School of Business. A native of Japan, she is able to share great insights into user acquisition in our Japanese market. She loves that what she is doing at Udemy this summer is helping people learn in some way. In the near future she wants to get a dog and take horseback-riding lessons.


Srishti Jain, Corporate Marketing
Carnegie Mellon, Economics and StatisticsP1760089_jpeg
Last but not least, I’m back for another summer at Udemy with freshly acquired skills in data science and analytics. I am helping the corporate marketing team identify trends in how our students are closing the skills gap. It is exciting to see how Udemy has changed over the past year, and l love how willing everyone is to help each other learn and grow. This summer, I want to complete famous hikes in the area including Black Mountain and the Dipsea Trail.

Dennis Yang named EY Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2016 Award winner

Dennis Yang_UdemyWe’re thrilled to announce that our CEO Dennis Yang received the
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2016 Award in the Tech-Enabled Services category in the Northern California region. Just as the Udemy team kicked off the Udemy LIVE welcome reception at Udemy HQ, Dennis climbed on stage at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose to proudly accept his award on behalf of the entire Udemy community.

Shared success

Dennis delivered the good news with this note to the company: “Your hard work and the contributions of our instructors combined with our mission were recognized by Ernst and Young through the Northern California Entrepreneur Of The Year.” This hits the nail on the head. The power behind Udemy is the hard work of exceptional executive leadership, dedicated team members, and passionate instructors who together bring courses to students in every corner of the globe. We’re very honored that this work to forward our mission of helping people build the lives they imagine has been recognized through Dennis’ major award win!

This year is an extra special one for the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Award program, as it celebrates its 30th anniversary milestone. The award recognizes “outstanding entrepreneurs who demonstrate excellence and extraordinary success in such areas as innovation, financial performance, and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.” Dennis was selected by an independent panel of judges after multiple rounds of submissions and interviews. Here’s a sneak peek that aired at the gala:

Onward and upward

As a Northern California regional award winner, Dennis is now in contention for the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2016 national program. National finalists and award winners will be announced at the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Awards gala in Palm Springs in November 2016. From there, the U.S. Entrepreneur Of The Year Overall Award winner moves on to compete for the World Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in Monaco, June 2017.

Udemy’s “Most Influential Women”

Udemy is lucky enough to work with not one, but two, of the Bay Area’s “Most Influential Women in Business”: Alexandra Sepulveda, deputy general counsel, and Claire Hough, senior vice president of engineering. These two role models inspire us with their leadership, intelligence, and compassion day in and day out.

04dc04fWe took this special opportunity to sit down with Alexandra to find out a bit more about her career and what it means to be an
influential woman. Here’s what we learned:

When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I grew up in Chile. My family had a farm full of horses, barn cats, and chickens. I was what some would call a “child Dr. Doolittle,” always playing with the animals and attempting to care for the wounded chickens with way too many bandages. I wanted to become a veterinarian. That is, until high school, when I realized how much math was required. I still thought I would get there, but the SATs sealed the deal. I saw the differences in my math and verbal scores and decided to pursue my strengths instead.

What’s the most difficult professional lesson you’ve learned?

Be very careful whom you hitch your star to. It’s natural to idolize the person with the most impressive experience, but it’s important to listen to your gut, choose the right person and the right connection. Pick someone just a few steps ahead of you career-wise and not just someone with a fancy title. Many times, an experience that is closer to yours is more helpful when you’re starting out in your career.  

What inspired you to join Udemy?

My mom’s experience as a teacher in Chile. I got to experience firsthand what education can do for people’s lives, and it made a huge impact on me. Udemy offered me an opportunity to be a part of this kind of impactful work and also to work with an amazing leader in our VP of people and general counsel, Lisa Haugh.

What’s your favorite part about your job?

I get to work with people who allow me to step out of the “lawyer box.” I have a lot of experience seeing how different strategies have gone right and gone very wrong. At Udemy, my opinion on important decisions and experiences outside of my legal duties are valued and encouraged.

What does being an “influential woman in business” mean to you?

I want to use it as an opportunity to put forward a different vision of what it means to be a lawyer. I use every part of myself in providing legal advice, from bad jokes to role-playing to train others on business negotiations. If I have a platform to change people’s perceptions of what a lawyer is, how a lawyer talks, and what a lawyer teaches, I’ll take it with honor.

Celebrating “Best Places to Work” 2016

2016 has been off to a big start for the Udemy team — we surpassed 10 million students, acquired Talentbuddy, simplified our pricing, and launched a new course-taking experience, just to name a few. We’ve been busy making major strides toward delivering the best possible learning and teaching experiences to help people succeed. This week, we were especially excited to celebrate that hard work and the people responsible for making Udemy a place where amazing things are accomplished every day.

We pride ourselves on a culture that encourages innovation, creativity, passion, and teamwork, and it’s nice to know we’re not the only ones who think so ;)

For the second year in a row, the San Francisco Business Times named Udemy a Best Place to Work in the Bay Area!” We ranked 14th on the list of mid-size companies in the top 125, and celebrated the honor in style. Here’s a peek of our champagne brunch festivities:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

PS. We’re hiring!


PayPal Invests in Workplace Skills Development with Rollout of Udemy for Business

Rapid change is the new normal in today’s fast-paced workplace. The work of the future requires a commitment to developing the skills of our workforce today. That’s why PayPal Learning is taking a big step in investing more in the skills training and development of its employees with the rollout of a new learning platform, Udemy for Business.

Once live, 5,000 PayPal employees in offices around the world will gain access to Udemy for Business’ high-quality content library of over 1,600 courses on a variety of topics ranging from programming and leadership skills to meditation and stress management. Courses are taught by world class experts such as Guy Kawasaki and Rob Percival, and well known educational institutions including the Drucker Institute and Wiley and Sons. Courses are continually added to the content library each month, ensuring that PayPal employees have access to the most sought-after skills.

Courses are available on-demand and PayPal employees can take them at their own pace across web and mobile devices – providing the flexibility for employees to learn what they want, at the precise moment of need. A dynamic online course experience allows students to speed up the pace of instruction, bookmark important tutorials, or save the lecture for future reference.

In addition to the curated library of courses, PayPal sees great opportunity to host its own training materials on its Udemy for Business learning platform. “We are constantly seeking new ways to empower PayPal employees to succeed and thrive. The flexibility of Udemy for Business allows us to put continuous learning right at the fingertips of our employees in a modern, meaningful way,” said PayPal Chief Learning Officer, Derek Hann.

“PayPal is on the cutting edge of everything they do and their approach to learning and development is no exception. We are thrilled to collaborate with PayPal as they continue to invest in developing their employees by arming them with the most advanced skills,” added Udemy for Business General Manager, Darren Shimkus.

PayPal will introduce employees to these new learning resources at their upcoming Learning Fair which builds excitement around their employee learning initiatives.

[Read more…]

HR Industry Snapshot: Investing in learning and development is a top priority for HR leaders in 2016


Seismic shifts in technology, management, and globalization have dramatically changed how we work. McKinsey & Company analysts estimated a 5X increase in the number of skill sets required in the workforce from 2009 to 2012.

Udemy for Business recently conducted a survey to better understand how the people responsible for recruiting, training, and retaining employees are navigating these dynamic times. We asked 200 HR leaders what qualities they value most during the recruiting process, what they consider to be the biggest factor in retaining employees, and what their department’s focus is for 2016.

The responses have been compiled into an HR Industry Snapshot, and the key insights reveal:

A changing face of recruitment

  • Only 20% of respondents say that “experience” is the most important factor in the recruitment process.
  • “Cultural fit” (37%) narrowly outweighs “skillset” (29%) as the most valued by HR during the recruitment process.

Retention takes more than free lunch

  • 60% percent of respondents report “employee fulfillment/engagement” as the most important factor in retaining employees, compared to a mere 3.5% who say “perks.”
  • Only 15% cite “compensation” as the biggest factor in employee retention.

Learning and development in focus

  • 35% of HR leaders report that “learning and development” will be the main focus for their departments in 2016, followed by “creating a better culture,” “recruitment,” and “benefits and compensation” respectively.

Download the full report here.

Udemy CEO Dennis Yang delivers EdTalk at Global Education and Skills Forum

This past weekend, The Global Education and Skills Forum took place in Dubai, bringing together some of the industry’s brightest to discuss key challenges facing educators around the world. We were honored to have our CEO, Dennis Yang, take part and lead an inspiring EdTalk on new models that are transforming education.

The standing-room-only crowd of global educators, policy makers, and media heard Dennis explain how technology and globalization are transforming the world, yet traditional education hasn’t kept pace. He argues that while traditional education has remained largely unchanged, innovative models are emerging online to enable more people than ever to join the 21st-century global economy.

New marketplace models, such as Udemy, unlock the potential of experts around the world and empower them to share their knowledge with students everywhere. We’re redefining what it means to be a student and teacher. And we’re helping people anywhere gain the skills they need for the new economy. Dennis Yang, Udemy CEO

The event concluded with the prestigious Global Teacher Prize. We were especially excited for this portion of the program because one of our instructors, Elisa Guerra was among the finalists. Elisa founded Colegio Valle de Filadelfia in her hometown of Aguascalientes, Mexico. The school now offers both primary and secondary education and her model has been franchised to five new locations across Mexico City.

A Palestinian teacher, Hanan Al Hroub, from Samiha Khalil Secondary School in the West Bank city of al-Bireh took home the top honors, announced via video message from Pope Francis.

IMG_6485Udemy CEO Dennis Yang with Global Teacher Prize finalist and Udemy Instructor Elisa Guerra

Free Udemy courses for Hour of Code

Happy Computer Science Education Week! We’re thrilled to partner with a few of our amazing instructors again this year, to offer nine courses for free from December 7-13, in support of Hour of Code.

The Hour of Code is one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to “demystify code” and show students that they can learn computer science basics. It is a global movement that reaches tens of millions of students in more than 180 countries.

To participate, simply click here, select a course, and use the coupon code “HourofCode2015” to access each course for free. The following Udemy courses are being offered:

  • 1 Hour HTML by John Bura
  • 1 Hour JavaScript by John Bura
  • Game Development and Coding for Children by Pablo Farías Navarro
  • How to Play Minecraft for Parents – Play with Your Kids by Dr. Taffy, Erica and Cody Wagner
  • Kids Coding – Beginner HTML by John Bura
  • Programming for Entrepreneurs – Javascript by Pablo Farías Navarro
  • Teach Your Kids to Code: Learn to Program Python at Any Age! by Bryson Payne


Happy learning!

Udemy in Singapore


That would be word to describe the Singapore training landscape during from now through 2020 and beyond. Udemy is proud to be part of the launch of the iN.LEARN 2020 strategy and the opening of the iN.LAB on 28 Oct 2015. The Guest of Honour, Parliamentary Secretary for Ministry of Education and Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ms. Low Yen Ling, unveiled the roadmap, iN.LEARN 2020, for Singapore training providers over the next 4 years. The government will drive innovative learning approaches through funding and facilities; training professionals can now meet in a 2-story facility, iN.LAB, to ideate and develop new products for the local and global training community.


The photograph shows Ms Low Yen Ling in the middle and Mr Rich Qiu, Vice-President of Global Business Development, Udemy to her left and Mr Ng Cher Pong, Chief Executive of Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) next to Rich. Dr Michael Choy from Dioworks Learning is to the right of Ms Low.

Udemy has been actively engaging training organizations and government bodies in Singapore over the past year to align Udemy’s platform and online course offering with key initiatives and plans, such as SkillsFuture, a government-driven program to increase and improve lifelong learning for adult learners in Singapore. Together with Udemy’s local partner in Singapore, Dioworks Learning, Udemy is reaching out to the Singapore workforce to enable upskilling efforts.

Going forward, Dioworks Learning will also be running masterclasses and practitioners’ sharing sessions for the Singapore training community. The good news for experts who are selling their courses on Udemy is that with the government making a concerted effort to promote online learning among the workforce, more learners from Singapore are expected to purchase courses on Udemy for their own professional development.

We’re excited to help Singaporeans reach their professional goals with online training!

Udemy experts who are interested in participating or running these masterclasses in Singapore should email Bryan (bryan@dioworksgroup.com) for more details.