Redwood City, CA- Who would have thought that a leg injury could lead to an idea that would eventually help millions of students throughout the United States?  Andrew Grauer, Co-Founder and CEO of Course Hero, missed a few days of classes at Cornell University one semester because of a leg injury.  Because he did not know anyone in the classes that he had missed, it made it nearly impossible for him to find the notes and play catch up.  Thus, in 2006 with the help of CTO and Co-Founder, Gregor Carrigan the idea for Course Hero was born.

 

Course Hero is an amazing tool for college students who are interested in taking a class, but would first love to know more about it.  It is a website (as well as an iOS mobile App) where students can ask questions about any course, as well as be provided with study material, tools and online tutors.

 

Upon signing in, students are exposed to a variety of tools, from pre-existing notes, to flashcards, to study reminders.  Course Hero provides these amazing services for hundreds of colleges throughout the United States, providing a more efficient way to study and connect with tutors.

 

Au’loni Magazine staff got the opportunity to talk to Jesse Wentworth, content manager of the Mobile Team at Course Hero!

 

How has Course Hero grown since the beginning?

“In 9 years, Course Hero has grown to more than 5 million members and more than 7 million study resources for specific schools. We’ve also gone from 15 employees (when I started in 2011) to the 83 team members we have today. There’s been a lot of growth since I joined, and, obviously, even more from the start of Course Hero in 2006.”

 

What were some of the hardships along the way?

“It has taken—and still takes—a lot of persistence and optimism to build something amazing and to endure the rollercoaster of ups and downs. Ideas are powerful, but execution is crucial and takes a lot more time, effort, and resources than one might expect.  Since we are a crowdsourced website we had a little chicken and egg problem in the beginning. Having more helpful and original study resources generates more users but you need users to contribute their own study resources. It is a system that builds on itself once it has gained momentum. But, finding out how to build an active community of users contributing to and accessing our library of study resources took time, patience, and a lot of testing.”

 

Where do you see Course Hero going in the future/How do you see the perfect end result for the company?

While our current product serves millions of students, we still have much to do to build the world’s largest study group and library of study resources that we envision. There are still so many courses in the world we can get more study resources for to help students ask and answer any question they may need help with. Our core focus is creating more ways to accelerate how to acquire more study resources—like study documents, tutors, questions and answers, and flashcards—on our site that other students will find helpful to master their classes

 

Jesse was willing to give us some great advice when it comes to starting your own business.  “Get something out there. You could spend a lifetime getting everything “perfect” for your launch only to find out people want something slightly different. Your company needs to grow. Start with something small and add onto it and be willing to change as the world changes around you.”