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March 16, 2018

Is iXperience worth the investment?

Written by

Yunny Chung

We have always done our best to ensure that iXperience is competitively priced, but we are also not blind to the fact that the tuition fee is no trivial amount. You need to be sure that iXperience is an investment – and preferably one that will pay off sooner rather than later. Before coming to iXperience, Yunny Chung (Brown ‘17) had a tough decision to make. Like other potential iXperience students, she had to decide whether to pursue a traditional summer internship back home, or forgo that in pursuit of a summer abroad program with an education startup that was, at the time, only in its second year of inception.

It paid off, as Yunny explains below.

"Hey Yunny. I wanted to let you know that I chatted with the team out here today and we would be thrilled to have you join us for the Summer!"

I was filled with excitement and couldn’t believe what had just happened. I had just received an official offer for a full stack software engineering internship from a startup in the Bay area!

As I reflected back on all the events and people that had helped lead up to this triumphant moment, I realized that my greatest supporter was iXperience. This internship simply would not have been possible without the 8 weeks I spent in South Africa.

I hadn’t studied computer science at all until my sophomore year at college. With no experience in the tech field, except for one introductory computer science class at Brown, I was unsure as to what I should do for the coming summer – except that I wanted to find something that would better prepare me for a career in software engineering.

It was around that time that I heard about iXperience. The more I learned about the program, the more I was fascinated by its course curriculum and unique learning environment. Nevertheless, the price was no small consideration..

“Is iXperience Worth the Cost?”

I turned this question over and over in my mind. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to make a decision without a clear justification, so, before I applied for the program, I drew up a table comparing the potential gains and losses I might experience from attending the program.

The table I made a year ago looked something like this:

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 16.47.58.png

Contacting Alumni

I decided to contact some of the iX alumni to gain a little more insight into my expectations; and to better weigh up the pros and cons of the program.

Surprisingly, every single person I spoke to highly recommended the program to me, describing it as the best experience of their life. Furthermore, I was reassured, by everyone, that the program was super safe and well-organized.

They understood my hesitancy when it came to the cost, but they convinced me that I would gain more than I could ever imagine.

The Professional and Personal Payoff Was Real

And it was all true. Considering the accommodation, the quality of the program and, most importantly, the life lessons that I learned, I can confidently say that iXperience was one of the best investments of my life.

Web development skills were just the beginning of what I took away from Cape Town. I also learned how to apply my knowledge to real-world problems, how to independently develop my own solutions for surrounding issues, and, above all else, I got a clear sense of direction in my career path of choice. With an abundance of opportunities to gain hands-on experience, you’re bound to discover your hidden interests and potential.

Before iX, I was still quite unsure of my decision to focus on computer science. I didn’t know I was capable of developing a software application, and I certainly did not anticipate falling in love with the tech start-up culture.

Before iX, I never expected that I would one day get an internship at my top-choice company, with high payment for the coming summer.

So was iXperience worth the cost?

Well, it wasn’t a "cost", but rather an "investment" in my life. I gained invaluable technical skills, work experience, self-confidence, and motivation - all integral for continued success.

How can I say it wasn’t?

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