ED­U­CATE YOUR­SELF

Reader's Digest (India) - - Mednews -

to de­vel­op­ing the re­sources of the Khan Acad­emy, al­though he was still work­ing from his wardrobe. While the be­gin­nings may have been mod­est, Khan had an im­mense vi­sion from quite early on. In 2007, when he was fil­ing tax pa­per­work, he was asked to de­tail his mis­sion state­ment as a not-for-profit com­pany. “I could have writ­ten, ‘I want to make a repos­i­tory of videos and ex­er­cises on the web for free,’ but a mis­sion is some­thing you should chase,” he says. “So I wrote: ‘A free world-class ed­u­ca­tion, for any­one, any­where’.”

Khan ex­plains: “We wanted a mis­sion state­ment on pur­pose that we could never say, ‘We are done’.”

Khan’s grow­ing team in­cludes sev­eral staff lured from lu­cra­tive roles in busi­ness, in­clud­ing his school maths ri­val and col­lege room­mate, Shan­tanu Sinha, in the role of pres­i­dent and chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer, and school im­ple­men­ta­tion lead Sun­dar Sub­barayan. “Usu­ally when peo­ple come to a start-up there’s a prom­ise of riches at the end of it, but here it’s world-chang­ing im­pact, not per­sonal wealth,” says Sub­barayan.

That Sal­man Khan would aspire to such lofty ed­u­ca­tional goals was not a given. He was born in New Or­leans, in Louisiana state, to a Bangladeshi fa­ther and In­dian mother whose mar­riage was ar­ranged. He has joked that the at­trac­tions of the state for his ex­tended fam­ily are straight­for­ward: “It had spicy food, hu­mid­ity, gi­ant cock­roaches, and a cor­rupt govern­ment”—much like their home­land. Missed out on sub­jects at school? In­ter­ested in learn­ing some­thing new? The in­ter­net is open­ing up ed­u­ca­tion to ev­ery­one, and now you can be taught by the best ed­u­ca­tors from the best uni­ver­si­ties in the world, free. Most won’t get you an ac­tual de­gree, but they will ex­pand your brain. Some ways to ac­cess this form of ed­u­ca­tion are:

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