Startup Institute is Moving its Campus to 1871, Expanding Programing for Growth Companies

This article originally appeared in ChicagoInno. The Startup Institute is moving its Chicago headquarters to the Merchandise Mart as part of the expanded 1871 2.0.

The company, which helps future startup employees land tech jobs by teaching product and design, web development, technical marketing, and sales and account management, will move into a roughly 2,500 square foot dedicated space in 1871's growing office. They expect to be in by the first week in October, according to Startup Institute Director Jenn Yee.

The Startup Institute's team, along with the 10-15 students enrolled in each of its four tracks, are moving from their current location at 405 W. Superior. Yee said the chance to work inside 1871 was "incredibly attractive" to the company.

"I’ve seen an amazing evolution of the [Chicago tech] ecosystem and I think that 1871 has definitely anchored that in many ways," Yee said.  "It's clear they have a really great brand proposition and recognition throughout the city, so obviously this is big for us. There's the proximity to 1871 from an exposure perspective, but we'll also literally be proximate to some of the startups we’re partnering with."

Yee called the move a win/win for both the Startup Institute and 1871. Startup Institute students are looking for jobs upon completion of the 8-week program, and 1871 member companies are looking for talent. But Yee said the Startup Institute is planning to expand its programming to offer growth companies education as well, potentially bringing another benefit to the 1871 community.

In addition to training employees, what we're trying to build is some thought leadership and programing around how to build a better organization," Yee said. "How to build a team. How to work with senior developers. How to evaluate senior talent. How to build culture at your growing company. We're experimenting with building educational models around those things.

Yee declined to comment on the financial terms of the move, but because of the complementary nature of the two organizations, the deal was "more than economic," she said.

"It was very beneficial for both of us to partner, so it ended up being pretty good for both," she said.

Ultimately, Yee feels the move will offer Startup Institute students more of why they took the courses in the first place: access to tech jobs.

"To be closer to the jobs that are being broadcast and to the companies that have the need for the talent--when you think about coffee chats and getting to know people and applying for those positions--it's such a great advantage to be able to access companies so close by."