About Eric Rosenbaum: Eric Rosenbaum is a blogger and is currently pursuing his M.A. in Humanities at University of Chicago.
The Next Step for Victory Step
Looking back at the success of Victory Step after only two years, founder and CEO Varun Tewari is pretty happy. His organization has tutored hundreds of Dallas-area high school students, many of whom saw dramatic improvements in grades and test scores. And Victory Step has received outspoken praise from parents and students alike, for its quality, price, its communicativeness, and its results.
But Varun still sees a lot of progress to be made. His three-year plan, which he designed alongside his management team and by taking advice from VC firms, will take the Victory Step model in new directions. The plan, when it goes into effect, will give more students access to the program and provide new resources for everybody.
The new frontier—or one of the new frontiers—is the internet. In designing an internet campaign, Varun wants to learn from, but also improve upon, online options offered by competitors. Victory Step will eventually offer online classes and digital homework assignments. “If someone in Oklahoma, California or any other state wants to take an SAT class, we want to be able to offer it for a very reasonable price.”, says Varun. Their new website, to be launched this week, is another leg of this strategy, and is designed to make it easier for students and tutors to communicate with each other and share documents.
With online classes, more people than ever before will be able to receive help from Victory Step, but they are not the only way to expand access to resources. Varun and his team also plan to create new Victory Step locations to widen the company’s physical presence. Currently, Victory Step has offices in Dallas, Irving, and Fort Worth. Within three years, they plan to open up offices in Houston, and in Virginia and California as well.
Varun also wants to reach outside of the company’s offices and place tutors directly inside schools. “We have been talking to different schools right now,” Varun says. “Nothing has been set yet.” Having locations inside schools will be much easier for students, because they will no longer have to worry about the commute from school to the Victory Step office.
If everything goes according to plan, Victory Step will no longer be a company only targeted at high school students. Within three years, Victory Step wants to begin classes for the GRE, MCAT, and LSAT exams, among others. The Curriculum Director of the company has been busy developing a lesson plan for these tests. Adding college-level tests to the Victory Step curriculum is yet another way to expand access to Victory Step.
The three-year plan is only part of an even longer, more ambitious plan for Victory Step. Ultimately, Varun would like to set up whole schools under the Victory Step banner; he would like to advertise more widely, for instance in television spots; and he would like to offer more free classes for low-income students.
There is another reason the expansion of Victory Step is good for its current students: the bigger the company gets, the more people it will need to hire. “Whenever we have classes we talk about jobs, and I always put that out there: maybe if you’re in college and you have a really good SAT score, you can come work for VS,” Varun says. “We prefer smart people with degrees. So that’s your motivation. Finish college. Get it done with, and then come find me.”