Most students go to university so they'll be able to get better jobs and make more money but in today's fast moving digital world some are questioning just whether universities will help them achieve that. This partly explains why there's such interest in innovating the education experience currently (MOOCs, Udacity etc). Perhaps one version of the future of university learning is emerging just off London's Brick Lane where Cass Business School has hitched its wagon to the fashionable "Pop-Up" concept and launched the world's first "Pop Up" University: Pop Along For an Education.
It's no surprise that the latest pop-up phenomenon sprang up just off London's Brick Lane famous for its B.Y.O.D curry restaurants (think drink, not device) . Brick Lane found near London's Silicon roundabout, is an area that has quickly established itself as London's digital hub and now rivals Soho as the place where London's hipsters wish to work. As the Future of Work pulls London's centre of gravity Eastwards so the world's first pop up university for digital entrepreneurs has opened its doors. The classes on offer are sharper, shorter and designed to support London's swelling rank of digital entrepreneurs with topics ranging from viral marketing, gaming, video sharing to the less glamorous but equally necessary risk management and compliance. And the best bit is they're free (for now, at least).
The founders behind the Pop Up from Cass Business School and see value from linking the city's universities to the city's burgeoning breed of digital entrepreneurs. The demand for these sort of classes is there for the attendees but value also flows back to the Universities that need better links into a digital community that increasingly puts London on the map. The problem for universities is that most digital entrepreneurs decide not to spend the two years slaving over a traditional masters degree while the opportunity they've spotted may wither and die. And it's clear that universities need to broker ongoing relationships with these new centres of digital work that continue to exert their influence on the global stage. These start-ups are small, innovative and represent London's Future of Work in action and Universities will need to track them.