Don’t miss the story of Christian Van Der Henst, a digital nomad and world citizen who has come a long and interesting way to consolidate Platzi as one of the most important EdTechs in the region.
If someone has been a pioneer in his country and throughout Latin America in terms of the web, it has been Christian Van Der Henst. We have much to tell about his career, as well as his experience as a co-founder of Platzi, the largest technology school in Spanish in Latin America.
Meet Christian Van Der Henst
This Latino entrepreneur comes from Guatemala and is currently located in San Francisco, California. Christian Van Der Henst trained in Marketing, Design and Business Management, as well as in Information Security and Software Engineering Fundamentals.
He identifies as a digital nomad and citizen of the world after having shared his passions in more than 20 countries. He has dedicated his life to promoting the use of the Internet and its technologies. He is a web developer, lecturer, YouTuber, tweeter, teacher and food lover.
The beginning of his career in the digital world
Christian started his way in the world of technology creating websites. He was one of the first webmasters in Guatemala. In 1997 he founded Maestros del Web, the first community of Hispanic developers to share knowledge online.
This platform, which contains news, tips and courses, became an important landmark in the technology community in Latin America. Eventually, Maestros del Web gave way to Foros del Web, and both projects brought together half a million webmasters who wrote thousands of articles and generated more than a million discussions. The impact was such that it defined an entire generation of programmers.
One of the most significant publications that Christian has made in Maestros del Web, refers to a post that describes the Web 2.0. It was even transformed into PDF to be used in academia, being cited in many places on the planet.
In 2004, this Latino entrepreneur co-founded a blog geared toward the Guatemalan community called Guate360. The site works as a way to promote the country through virtual tours, food recipes, a directory of hotels, tourist attractions and restaurants. Five years after its creation, he sold his shares.
More of his career
Among other things, Van Der Henst also designed websites for magazines, as well as promotions for the FutSal World Cup in his country. He participated in the redesign of the platform of the most important newspaper in Guatemala and collaborated with the implementation of the first New Media site of the Francisco Marroquín University, which in turn was complemented with the creation of face-to-face courses that had to do with web design.
It should be noted that Christian Van Der Henst is a key figure in the construction of the Guatemalan Association of Webmasters. He has also promoted the grouping of local websites. Likewise, he has supported Guatemalan projects of the International Webmaster Association.
Platzi is currently one of the most important online education platforms in Latin America. It was created in 2012 and was founded by Van Der Henst along with the Colombian entrepreneur Freddy Vega.
Its origins date back to the times of the global economic crisis in 2010. It was then that this pair of entrepreneurs began to work on creating technology courses to be taught online. The first course was about SEO (Searching Engine Optimization), at that time the project was called Mejorando la Web.
Today, Platzi has more than 600 courses with frequently updated content available, in addition to publishing blog posts and podcasts every week. The classes are focused on obtaining the skills with the greatest demand, taught by recognized leaders in their respective areas.
One of the keys to Platzi’s success is that its objective goes beyond providing knowledge. Its purpose is focused on improving the quality of life of its students through their professionalization. In fact, 70% of those who graduate from Platzi double their income and 20% start their own technology company.
In 2015, Platzi became the first company targeting the Latin market to be incorporated into Y Combinator, the Silicon Valley accelerator. Additionally, in 2016 Endeavor included Platzi in its 64th International Selection Panel in Madrid. The latter is a non-profit organization, a pioneer in applying the concept of high-impact entrepreneurship.
All this has allowed Platzi to belong to a network of mentors, as well as the necessary support to have a greater presence in the international entrepreneurship ecosystem.
Unquestionably, Christian Van Der Henst is a creator of learning communities and a driver of growth for others. With his innovative ideas and projects, he has managed to break schemes and have an impact on thousands of people.
His passion for the use and dissemination of web technologies as educational tools has undoubtedly led him to contribute to the social and economic development of many Latinos.
Tell us what you think of the story of this Latino entrepreneur, have you already heard of him?