Building one of Southern Africa’s biggest EdTech providers is only possible with one thing: an unrivalled, world-class tech education. This education would be impossible without a course structure that teaches critical programming skills in a well-paced structure that makes sense to students and prepares them for a tech job in a time- and cost-effective way. That is where Head of Education Nicolaas Kruger comes in: his ability to keep our bootcamps effective, competitive, and delivering great value to students is why he has one of the most crucial roles in HyperionDev leadership.
Nico comes from an academic background in ICT and Computer Science, but has over a decade of experience in education, on all levels, from giving lectures himself, to managing programs, to designing whole curricula. As the Head of Education, Nico oversees the bootcamps we offer at HyperionDev, making sure the content taught is up to date, that mentorships are working, and that the course structure is working. It also involves being innovative and able to overcome challenges, like making sure a global pandemic does not disrupt our bootcamps for even a second.
What attracted you to HyperionDev?
A lot of my past experience has been with companies who are in their scale-up phase. HyperionDev is now at that point where the magic is going to happen and I want to be a part of this. The opportunity to head up this established tech education leader’s Education division and be a part of HyperionDev leadership was not something I was going to pass up. For me, it was a fantastic opportunity to grow my career, and put my years of education management experience to the test.
Tell us about your career development. What did the journey to HyperionDev look like?
I’ve worked in EdTech as a lecturer, management assistant, academic manager and course coordinator for the past 10 years now. It’s been a steady progression: each year I would take on a little more responsibility, and take on new challenges that pushed the limits of the position at the time. My current position in the HyperionDev leadership is really the result of a decade of focus on building my career in this direction, and being Head of Education is the pinnacle of my career (so far).
What are your biggest achievements since you joined HyperionDev?
The COVID-19 lockdown pretty much put a stop to South Africa’s economy, society and education. This was a tremendously challenging time, but it also saw two of my biggest accomplishments.
First, my team and I reacted quickly to the lockdown news, so that all students who were taking on-site bootcamps could learn online with as little disruption as possible. We pulled this off in less than 2 weeks. Being able to keep our bootcamps open, when everything else was closed, was a fantastic moment for me.
We were also able to design, build and roll out our first credit-bearing bootcamp during the national lockdown. Launching a brand-new 6-month bootcamp is hard enough, but launching an advanced program that teaches software development alongside web development – and which includes a guaranteed internship – was perhaps the highlight of my year.
Who do you consider to be important sources of inspiration?
For me, the people I look up to are those who are embracing new and disruptive ways of teaching students critical skills, and who are doing it with phenomenal results. I look up to people like Reaan Immelman (the Head of Education Delivery at ABSA), Sam and Rob Paddock (the founders at GetSmarter), and Amy Johnson, the Chief Academic Officer at Valenture Institute – I count myself very fortunate to have been able to work with these individuals. Lockdown showed us how crucial alternative models of education are for seamless, uninterrupted learning – and I’m constantly inspired by these industry figures who are at the forefront of making our disruptive models a part of the new normal.
How would you describe the culture of HyperionDev?
I love working with the various teams and departments. They’re a vibrant and forward-thinking group of people that are going to take the company and the industry to the next level.
What would you say is the most important value someone would need to work at HyperionDev?
I would say that Adaptability is key – We work in a fast paced ever changing environment that will challenge anyone that comes into the business. If you can keep up, you will flourish. That said, you are supported by an amazing team that will assist you in getting over the line.
In your own words, why should talented people come and work in your team?
As I mentioned before, HyperionDev is at that magical point where we are about to start rapid scaling. The challenges we will face will make careers and change both the tech industry and the way people think about education – it’s a phenomenal opportunity. Anyone who wants an extraordinary career can’t say no to that.
What do you do to de-stress after work?
Over the weekends, I like spending time with my family and from day-today, I enjoy reading and cooking.
Are you an A-player, or a talented professional who cares about accessible tech education? If so, we’re looking for people like you to join the team leading Southern Africa’s largest provider of tech education, and become a part of HyperionDev leadership. Our diverse, international team enjoys medical aid packages, remote working allowances, a generous leave policy, and real avenues for career growth and promotion.
Visit our career page to see all our available positions and apply to join our team today!