Startup Directory


Codecademy was founded in 2011 by Columbia University classmates Zach Sims and Ryan Bubinski ’11CC. This education company offers free coding classes in programming like PHP, JavaScript, and Python as well as HTML and CSS. Codecademy is building the education the world needs – the first truly net native education. They have created a more engaging educational experience than students get from the classroom.

To motivate its 5 million+ users, the site provides feedback, badges for completion, as well as recognition for the user’s total score by displaying it to others. The site also allows users to create and publish new lessons using a Course Creator tool. Users have completed over 100 million exercises and more than a billion lines of code have been submitted to Codecademy.

“Programming is one of the few disciplines taught today in schools that virtually guarantees students a job upon graduation. Beyond that, it’s one of the few fields where students are creators–they’re building games, websites, applications, and more” said Mr. Sims.

Codecademy has been recognized in many publications. TIME Magazine called Codecademy one of the “50 Best Websites of 2012,” while TechCrunch awarded Codecademy the “Best Education Startup” Crunchie Award in 2013.

Zach Sims, co-founder, previously worked for a few startups including GroupMe (acq. by Skype) and (acq. by Facebook) and was, somehow, a Political Science major at Columbia. He redeemed himself by dropping out of college to work on Codecademy. Zach has been named to Inc. Magazine’s 30 Under 30 list, along with Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30 list. The City of New York named him a New York City Venture Fellow in 2013. You can watch an interview with him here.


Ryan Bubinski, co-founder, started building web applications at age 13 and hasn’t stopped since, except for an occasional break to practice cooking or enjoy a drink or two with team members and friends. He graduated from Columbia with a degree in computer science and biophysics.