Michelle Jones- Wayfinding Academy

For Life on Purpose Episode #28, my guest is Michelle Jones, a former traditional-model college professor who is starting her own college called the Wayfinding Academy in Portland, Oregon. Michelle joins me to discuss higher education re-imagined for the 21st Century, the importance of asking questions, passion-based leadership, and the crucial importance of real-world skills and experience in education.

Many listeners also know Michelle as “Michelle the Magician”, the behind-the-scenes guru at the annual World Domination Summit (WDS), that was the inspiration behind my first podcast Radio Enso. We talk about that experience and how she’s applying what she learned there to her new venture.

About Michelle Jones:

Michelle Jones is a former traditional model college professor who is starting her own college, the Wayfinding Academy. Her 15 years teaching leadership and organizational behavior courses at colleges and universities across the country has prepared her well to re-imagine what higher education can be with this new endeavor. She is also drawing on her experience organizing events and communities with TEDxMtHood and the World Domination Summit and founding non-profit organizations such as SuperThank.

More About The Wayfinding Academy:

We’re a group of professors, students, higher education professionals, non-profit and community leaders, and everyday citizens with over 100 years of experience in higher education who know college can be the incredible experience it promises to be.

Right now too many students can’t afford college, drop out, or even finish college without finding direction or purposes in their lives. We believe there is a better way. We are starting our own college. A new model for higher education.

WayfindingAcademyCollege Re-Imagined

The current model for higher education works for some people, but not all. You might know someone who:

  • has a job unrelated to their major;
  • went to college as a rite of passage, but wasn’t ready;
  • has interests that don’t fit in a specific major;
  • learns better through experience than in a classroom;
  • wants guidance to help discover their strengths, passions, and interests;
  • accumulated an unacceptable amount of student loan debt;
  • has a job they are not passionate about.

The Wayfinding Academy will be an affordable, 2-year college based in Portland, Oregon focused on what matters most in education: real world experience, community support and individual passion.

Students won’t be asked to choose a major from a list, they’ll be supported in discovering their own personal mission. They’ll take core classes building skills that will serve them on any path.

And they’ll work with advisors to create handcrafted experiences meaningful to them and build a portfolio through real experiences.

We stand committed to helping students find their pathway, so when a student graduates from the Wayfinding Academy, we ​guarantee we will work with them to plan and execute their next steps.

We promise no student will leave the Wayfinding Academy not knowing what they are doing next.

To learn more about the Wayfinding Academy, visit: http://www.wayfindingacademy.org/.