Posted by: Discover Scholars | October 20, 2008

Google 10 to the 100: Describe your idea

This week, we are featuring our responses to Google’s Project 10 to the 100th. For more background information, start by reading our original post here. In today’s post, we describe DiscoverScholars.org to the Google audience.

# 10. What one sentence best describes your idea? (maximum 150 characters)

DiscoverScholars.org seeks to increase educational opportunity by awarding scholarships to the types of students valued by donors in the marketplace.

# 11. Describe your idea in more depth. (maximum 300 words)

DiscoverScholars.org applies market-based principles to funding for higher education.

Charitable donors currently lack the means to directly support the education of worthy individuals. In the market for financial aid, students’ educational funding is unnecessarily tied to college financial aid packages and government support. If donors to colleges and educational foundations could be assured that their contributions would be allocated to the types of students they wished to support, both parties would be better off.

Unlike government aid, existing scholarship funds, or financial aid packages from schools, DiscoverScholars.org uses donor-specified attributes to allocate funding. At the time of donation, donors specify the importance of various characteristics such as students’ learning institutions, GPA ranges, fields of study, level of financial need, extracurricular activities, home region of the country, and more. For each contribution, DiscoverScholars.org will identify the students who meet the donor’s criteria, decide who should receive funding, and then issue checks in students’ names to their learning institutions. This gives donors more control over the allocation of their contributions, and, more importantly, offers students an opportunity to gain access to many sources of funding with just one application. Every donor who makes a contribution to DiscoverScholars.org would represent a potential scholarship opportunity for the student.

Students apply to DiscoverScholars.org as they would to any other scholarship, submitting such information as their academic and employment histories, extracurricular interests, short essays and financial need securely online at the DiscoverScholars.org website. DiscoverScholars.org will authenticate the accuracy of each application before any student is made available for funding. Students will be evaluated on their academic records, extracurricular involvement, level of financial need, and other relevant variables. Those scores will be used, along with the criteria specified by donors, to determine which students will be awarded funding.

Help us continue to grow:

Students: Apply today!

Donors: Consider making a tax-deductible contribution to the students of your choice.

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