Does College Matter?

With soaring student debt, innovative technology, and new-fashioned careers—we wanted to ask the question: does college still matter? The second season of “Does College Matter?” will bring you insights from role models who have navigated a variety of worlds – from college and entrepreneurship to coding academies and the work place. With thought leaders such as Google’s Chief Education Evangelist, Jaime Casap; the CEO of Remind, Brett Kopf; and Sarah Green-Carmichael from Harvard Business Review chiming in, we ask entrepreneurs, podcasters, educators, and students alike: did college matter for you?
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Does College Matter?



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Sep 18, 2017

In our interview with Joselyn Cousins, first generation college student and community development practitioner, you’ll learn about Joselyn’s journey as a first-gen student, two key mentors who changed her trajectory, and why she thinks college is essential.

Sep 5, 2017

Reimagining High School for a High Tech World: The Phoenix Coding Academy
Description: We visit a new kind of high school that’s blurring the lines between school, college, and work. In this episode, you’ll learn about how a novel coding academy works in a large urban district, where the idea for the school came from, and why the kids love it.

Aug 28, 2017

In our interview with Nikhil Goyal (journalist, activist, and author of Schools on Trial), you’ll learn about what makes him an extreme learner, whether he believes college still matters, and how his desire to see a more just world continues to motivate him.


Aug 14, 2017

In our conversation with Alivia Blount, a Code2040 fellow, Data Analytics intern at Intuit, Winner of the 2015 USC "Hack the Gender Gap", and sophomore at UC Davis, you'll learn about how she pivoted into tech, what makes her an extreme learner, and the value of accidental mentors.

Aug 7, 2017

In our interview with Parminder Jassal (Learn & Work Futures Group Director at Institute for the Future), you'll learn about why she thinks the future of work and learning is already here, how to prepare for a world of automation, and why the future is coming faster than it ever did before.

Jul 31, 2017

In our interview with Jane McGonigal (Chief Creative Officer, SuperBetter Labs and Research Affiliate at Institute for the Future), you'll learn about how gaming can help you become a better problem solver, why games are transforming the way we lead our real lives, and how a brain injury lead her to some unexpected insights.

Jul 24, 2017

In our interview with Marina Gorbis, Executive Director for the Institute for the Future, you'll learn about how IFTF helps people imagine the possibilities of what's to come, how to spot signals of the future, and whether Marina thinks college still matters.

Jul 17, 2017

In our conversation with Jason Young, the founder of Mindblown Labs, you'll learn about how gamification can help millennials make better financial decisions, the importance of empowering communities, and why in today's world, college still acts as a gatekeeper for opportunity.

Jul 10, 2017

In our conversation with Kenyatta Leal, you’ll learn about his transformative journey from former convict to management, how education turned his life around, and why ultimately, in life, there are no throwaway people.

Jul 3, 2017

In our conversation with Laurence Bradford, the creator of Learn to Code with Me, youll hear about Laurence’s own transformation from non-techie to programmer, techniques she uses to keep herself accountable, and how men and women differ, when learning to code.

Jun 25, 2017

In our conversation with Dr. Teri Delane, the founding principal of Life Learning Academy Charter School, you’ll learn about Teri’s own journey as an everyday hero, why students who may not have been successful in traditional settings are thriving at the school, and how Teri has changed the lives of hundreds of Bay Area students over the past 20 years.

Oct 12, 2016

Believe it: 10 text over the summer can increase college enrollment by 10%. A joint effort between digital creative agency Huge, non-profit Civic Nation & the White House’s Office of Public Engagement, UP NEXT is a texting program designed to provide students with guidance on college. Today, you’ll hear from a professor whose research on texting inspired the Up Next program as well as a student who used Up Next during her senior year.

Oct 5, 2016

The Reach Higher initiative is the First Lady's effort to inspire every student in America to take charge of their future by completing their education past high school, whether at a professional training program, a community college, or a four-year college or university.

In our conversation with Reach Higher's Exec. Director Eric Waldo, Better Make Room's Don Yu  & college student Darius Wesley, we talk about the inspiration behind the program, the impact that school counselors and mentors can have, and what advice they would give high school students today. 

Jun 16, 2016

In our final episode of Season 2, we talk to Mary Daly, “the people’s economist,” about what roles economic mobility and economic inequality play in education. Also in the episode: Jody’s own college story and reflecting on this season with our producer, Ellen Chan.

Jun 9, 2016

In our interview with Isabel Sawhill and Beth Akers, two Research Fellows from the Brookings Institution, we talk about college affordability, why college debt is usually worth it (though it’s not without risks), and what advice they would give to a room full of high school students.

Jun 1, 2016

In our interview with Susan Dynarski, a professor at the University of Michigan and writer for the New York Times’ Upshot column, she dispels commonly held myths about college debt and explains how she stays innovative with her research.

May 25, 2016

In our conversation with economist Jaison Abel, he talks about the “well-educated barista” and how new grads fare in the job market.

May 19, 2016

In our conversation with Maddy Maxey, the Co-Founder and President of The Crated, she talks about how she came up with her company’s name, her experience as a Thiel Fellow, and why the ah-ha moment is a myth.

May 12, 2016

We’re taking a quick break from “Does College Matter?” this week. We’ll be back next week with the founder of The Crated, Maddy Maxey.

May 5, 2016

In this interview, guest-host Vanessa Ishii (from Stitcher Radio) and Matt Lieber (co-founder of Gimlet Media) explore the world of storytelling, the power of audio, and what role podcasts will play in the future.

Apr 27, 2016

In our conversation with Teuila Hanson, SVP of HR, Diversity and Inclusion at the San Francisco Fed, she talks about what’s at stake in conversations about diversity and why we need to be honest about our own biases.

Apr 20, 2016

In our conversation with Kathleen Mullaney, Udacity’s VP of Careers, she talks about Udacity’s mission, her mentors, and what advice she would give to career switchers and

Apr 14, 2016

In our interview with Steve Davee, Maker Ed's Chief Maker Educator, we talk about the power of play, what inspires people to learn, and how he thinks the modern maker movement can impact college. 

Apr 7, 2016

In our interview with Tyler Kingkade, Senior Editor and Reporter at Huffington Post College, we ask him about hot topics on campus and whether he thinks college still matters. 

Mar 31, 2016

Scholar Match is a non-profit, founded by author Dave Eggers. Designed to guide low-income students through the college application process, they continue to be a resource to students after high school, steering them through college and on toward a career. In our interview with the staff and students from Scholar Match, we talk about what problems they're trying to solve and what kind of impact Scholar Match has on their students' lives. 

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