Alison was founded in Galway, Ireland, in 2007 and has grown organically to become a major force in free online education and skills training. Today, with more than 19 million learners in 195 countries, Alison is changing how the world learns and up-skills.
Alison is committed to equality and access to education and skills training irrespective of gender, geography, economic status or any other barriers that can so often stunt potential. So Alison offers a range of free courses that meet the many diverse needs of our learners. The UN declared in Article 26 of the 1946 Declaration of Human Rights that “Education shall be free…”. This statement will always inspire Alison.
Alison was founded by Alison CEO, Mike Feerick. Mike is a businessman, but one with a difference. He believes in social impact, and that you can build a financially successful business focused on meeting a huge global social need, making education and skills training more accessible for everyone. He invites anyone who believes that too, to support the Alison mission.
It was in 2005 that Mike first conceived of the idea that education and skills training could be made free online through the use of advertising and a combination of free and paid (premium) services. “I knew that if we were going to enable the masses to access free education and skills training for the workplace, at every level, for anyone anywhere, in any language, we would have to build a business model that was self-funding and hugely scalable. I realized that the change necessary in education was not possible through philanthropy and charity alone.
Alison is free of charge to you. But it’s still a business – albeit a socially-focused one. Alison is a social enterprise that makes money through advertising, merchandise, and the sale of Certificates and Diplomas, should a graduate choose to buy one.