(This is a rather long post so if you can’t give your undivided attention now, please read this fully when you can.)
As more time passes I’m realizing Solo Practice University™ is going to become something much greater than even I envisioned. While I anticipated a certain synergy with the whole being much greater than the sum of its parts, I never fully appreciated the incredible intellectual capital of all those participating. Not just the faculty, but the students. I also knew SPU was a going to fill a void but I never truly understood the depth and breadth of that void.
Since first announcing the construction of Solo Practice University™ back in March of 2008, many potential students have asked a very important question, “what will the tuition be?” I never deliberately dodged the question. I just didn’t have an answer. I needed to get a better handle on what was being created. And then I needed to understand what made it valuable to those who would enroll.
Understand, the mission of Solo Practice University™ is very big, much bigger than revenue generation. But in order to fulfill this mission we have to generate revenue so we can serve the students and serve them properly.
The word ‘university’ was originally defined as ‘a corporation of students.’ This philosophy will permeate everything done at SPU. So, in keeping with the philosophy that Solo Practice University™ is ‘a corporation of students’ and this is the students’ University, I decided to present the question of ‘how much and in what structure’ to a focus group of more than three hundred potential students.
Their responses were uplifting, important, considered, thoughtful, showed incredible enthusiasm and caring and a strong desire to help shape the community before we’ve ever even opened our doors!
Everyone was given the same minimum criteria:
1. Solo Practice University™ will not be free. Why?
- Mama always said, ‘anything worth having is worth paying for.’ Only faculty and scholarship recipients will have free access to the University.
- When you are willing to invest in yourself, your education and your professional future, whether $10 or $10,000, you bring a different level of commitment to learning and you enrich not just yourself but the community.
- Our course offerings, functionality, community and direction will not be dictated by advertisers. If we accept any paid advertising it will be with limited exception, only appear in the Co-Op and only after we have determined it is a service or product valuable to the solo. Once accepted it is subject to peer-review.
2. There will be no ‘tiered’ memberships or a la carte instruction. When you enroll as a student at SPU you have full, unlimited access to all educational components, all faculty, all technology, all communities…the whole enchilada. Why? The ‘whole enchilada’ is designed to help students experience a three hundred and sixty degree education surrounding solo practice in the 21st century.
What I can tell you is up until this point everyone without exception has expressed the same sentiment, “If Solo Practice University™ lives up to its mission it will prove priceless.” And based upon this recurring theme it’s clear price cannot be based upon the value of the education because it will, in fact, be ‘priceless.’
The objective criteria will be:
- covering costs of operation;
- generating revenue to meet our goal to provide scholarships to help new solos;
- independence from external influences;
- recognition of the current state of the economy and its impact on us all.
That’s why I’m now taking this important question to you: ‘how much and in what payment structure?”
You may want to review the following posts while you consider the question(s):
Please fill up the comment section with your thoughts or you can e-mail me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org as everything will be considered and the collective wisdom of all potential students tempered by our own goals will prevail. (you can also Tweet me on Twitter )
Thanks you in advance for taking the time to be part of building Solo Practice University™. I’m really looking forward to your contributions. And when we have finalized our tuition program you will be the first to know.