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What Exactly is GIX? Reflections Three Years After Graduation


This post is translated by ChatGPT, so take it with a grain of salt

If you haven't read my first article, you can read it here before proceeding with this one.

Alumni Reunion

Two and a half years after graduating from GIX, I've continuously kept in touch with the school and new students, witnessing the changes in each cohort.

I jokingly call myself a "Happy Hour Honorary Alumnus," as my juniors say they always see me whenever there's food – I still need to make up for what I missed during the pandemic lol.

A month ago, GIX held its first-ever Alumni Reunion since its inception. After attending, I had some thoughts. I intended to write a brief update, but it turned into a full article on its own, providing more reference for those interested in the Program.

After the Reunion, my understanding of GIX deepened, and I had an epiphany about many aspects that I previously found unreasonable and complained about.

Reacquainting With GIX

This new perspective is to understand GIX as a variant of an MBA highly connected to the technology industry.

Why do I say this? People choose MBAs often after working for some time, either to change careers or to become managers. More often, it's about building networks for future career paths.

GIX shares these traits, suitable for career changes, especially in tech startups.

The course is designed to be broad but not deep, and the duration is short. It's meant to quickly strengthen, adjust, and explore for those who already have some work experience, rather than trying to teach something in-depth.

Projects are rigorously designed to force you through the entire Design to Development process, simulating a complete Product cycle, practicing this framework.

While studying, these may seem annoying and tedious. But in the workplace, you indeed realize this is the norm, sometimes even feeling something's missing if you do less.

Building a Network

Another deep impression from this Reunion was the network that GIX has created.

Due to its interdisciplinary nature, all alumni have diverse career paths post-graduation. There are engineers in major companies, designers in the medical industry, Heads of Product in startups, and even those who went to Africa for Maker education.

In just five years since its inception, the alumni network has grown incredibly diverse and fascinating. I certainly plan to attend future Reunions to see everyone's progress and learn from their experiences.

It's safe to say that GIX has established a diverse, rich, and high-value community.

What's the Catch?

However, there's always a "but"...

I believe GIX has a positive long-term impact on careers. But in the short term, it might not be very beneficial, or even harmful, especially for new graduates or international students.

GIX is not a career training ground, but a career transition point. It provides resources, but it doesn't hand-hold you to excellence. Its interdisciplinary nature inevitably distracts you in different directions.

The following two types of people are not suitable for GIX:

First, those with a clear field they want to delve into and have no interest in other fields

For example, if you want to be a purely technical engineer or pursue a Ph.D., GIX will constantly distract you with other fields. You won't be able to deeply learn in your area of interest and will waste a lot of time. Please consider carefully.

Second, those who just want a stepping stone to work in the U.S.

If you're just looking to get a degree and OPT, wanting to slack off in classes and spend most of your time job hunting, GIX is definitely not a good choice.

GIX doesn't have a resounding reputation in any specific field yet and won't directly help you find a job. The coursework requires significant effort, and you can't skip homework or projects.

If you try to just get by at GIX, you will suffer, your project teammates will suffer, and the school will suffer. Please think thrice.

These are not discouragements but sincere advice not to make things harder for yourself. I've heard plenty of cases, whether feeling wronged by GIX or by teammates.

What About New Graduates and International Students?

For new grads or international students, securing a job and a visa to stay in the U.S. is likely a core goal.

GIX offers more comprehensive strength training, including cross-disciplinary communication and understanding the entire product development process, presenting and demonstrating your ideas and progress.

Compared to single-discipline programs, you might lack some hard skills in job hunting, which are crucial for new grads.

From my experience, to successfully find a job after graduating from GIX, you need substantial self-driven effort. Hard skills must be self-taught, not just relying on the school.

Preparing your resume and portfolio outside of class is basic. Class projects are practical opportunities—if you treat them just as assignments, the results will be limited. Applying what you want to learn to these projects is a chance to improve your abilities and enhance your resume.

(Like how I luckily found a job through a project where the tech stack highly matched, giving me an opportunity)

GIX alumni can provide various resources, but you need to proactively seek the right people, ask questions, and seek the help you want.


If you're still interested in this Program after reading this far, I'll share my final thoughts.

Even in its seventh iteration, GIX is still a new Program, with many existing issues in course design, faculty, etc., and plenty of room for improvement.

They've recently sought alumni feedback for program development, which shows their