When the pandemic hit the U.S., everything changed. Fortunately, GSC already had a number of training options in place that allowed us to be very flexible in where and how we worked.
We started doing full blown, online live classes about 18 months before COVID hit. We only began offering online training when we found a set of technologies that allowed us to closely replicate our best-in-class training experience online. We didn’t want any “YouTube” style training, no “good luck on the labs!” style service – it had to be the full, true, live class experience for us to jump into the arena. We had a plan that started with a small group of classes, then we expanded to a few more. We knew someday we’d be doing them all online potentially; well, March became Someday.
Virtual Experience: Live Discussion & On-Screen Help
I really do teach the same online as I do in person. Since we do everything live on our online classes, the lessons and lab sessions are the same. I can walk around and check progress virtually, pulling up student screens as they work. When someone has a question, they ask it out loud just like they would in a classroom, or raise their hand virtually for help through chat. I can help them and even take over the mouse if they allow it to show them things right on their screen.
I think the camaraderie we have in class also comes through in our live training. I still get to tell stories, and I still get to hear stories, and jokes, and witness passion, and now, occasionally, a dog since many are at home. All of that is OK, actually it’s great: we are brought closer together as we kibitz just as we would in person.
Benefits: Flexible Scheduling & Experienced Instructors
Online training has many benefits. No travel time for students and clients. Students can take the class anywhere as long as they have internet. Another benefit is flexibility: since we aren’t driving to a place, there is tremendous flexibility available for special situations. I can arrange time on off-hours and even after the class ends to reinforce class lessons and offer help. It is simply a matter of finding a time when a student and I can get together virtually.
The idea that I can teach anything from anywhere is extremely powerful. The classroom moves with me. I can teach students from anywhere in the world and been able to give them a true classroom experience, establishing relationships across the continent and across other continents. Initially, it was pretty wild to see students in a class from other states and countries in a class I’m teaching from Wisconsin; now, it’s just normal.
In the end, it is about the people. GSC has the most knowledgeable instructors, and we truly expect excellence not only in the technical knowledge, but the teaching. That is a hallmark of GSC Training and is one of the things that sets us truly apart from the crowd. While we may be teaching from home studios surrounded by our pets, plants, and loved ones, our students are still getting the best technical training you can find anywhere.
SOLIDWORKS Training Resources
Anything you need, we’re here to help!
- GSC SOLIDWORKS Course Example – Essentials
- GSC SOLIDWORKS Course Calendar
- Blog – Why Our Online Training is More Effective Than Others
- Blog – Why Your New Employees Could Use SOLIDWORKS Training
If you’re hoping to sign up for one of our current online courses, you can do so in a couple of ways. You can pay online with credit card when you select your class, you can call us at 800-454-2233.
If you’re wondering about your training being certified, it is! However for more on SOLIDWORKS certification exams that are often free for you to take through an employer with provided vouchers, view our blog, How to Use SOLIDWORKS Certification Vouchers for Exams.
(On a Personal Note)
My commute during this time became a flight of stairs. I already had a very good home studio setup with the same mic and camera setup that we use at GSC (and a comfy Herman Miller Aeron chair I bought from off a friend who moved out of the country a few years ago). I don’t skip a beat going from my morning coffee to my class, then up to the kitchen for lunch, maybe take a walk for a bit, and then I’m back for the afternoon session. While my office is now at home, there are things that really haven’t changed at all.
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