The school is located in SF, but only 50% of our students come from the SF Bay Area. 45% come from other parts of the US, and another 5% from other countries.
We want to make DBC more affordable, but there are some very important things we get by charging students directly that we'll never compromise on. We're working hard to make it more affordable within those constraints, though.
Some of the benefits we get by charging students:
First, the vast majority of our revenue comes from directly from students. They're our customers. If we made money only from employer referral fees, there'd be a financial tension between "in-network" and "out-of-network" employers. Right now about 40% of our students are hired from companies who don't have a referral agreement with us.
Second, when students pay they feel it. They demand so much of us because of what they paid. Their bar is set incredibly high and we push ourselves every day to overshoot it. If we're delivering the value we promise -- you'll be job-ready in 10 weeks, if that's what you want -- then we think the price tag is worth it.
Third, we, as staff, feel it. When a student hands over a check like that, holy shit, you feel responsible. They're entrusting you with their livelihood. It helps hold us accountable to remind ourselves every day that they're not just students, but customers.
Fourth, when you're in a room with 50 other people who have made that kind of personal and financial commitment, you can feel it. It's electric.
Fifth, we have a sustainable business. We don't need outside capital. We can create an awesome space. We can have an awesome library, events, etc. We can hire awesome teachers and pay them 2-3x what they'd make teaching elsewhere.
Just some food for thought. It doesn't change your overall point about our price tag, which we're sensitive to, but those are just a few things on the other side of the scale.