BOSTON April 30, 2018 / ScholarJet CEO & Co-founder, Tuan Ho, is one of three social entrepreneurs who have been recognized by the Priscilla Chan Stride Service Program as a Postgraduate Fellow and has been awarded a $30,000 grant for his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for public service.
Launched in late September of 2017, ScholarJet has awarded students almost $22,500 with over 15 action-based scholarships from Massachusetts’ most reputable companies including Akamai Technologies and Invoice Cloud. Additionally, ScholarJet has aligned their brand with notable, youth-focused nonprofit organizations including The Boston Foundation, uAspire, College Advising Corp, Bottomline and City Year.
Ho called an underserved community in Dorchester, Massachusetts “home” after leaving his home of Vietnam when he was ten years old. His future looked bright as a senior at Boston Latin Academy, only to find out his family couldn’t afford his college education to Northeastern University where he was accepted. With English as his second language, Tuan wrote over 120 essays to apply for 40 college scholarships and earned close to $500,000, realizing the scholarship application process is broken, favors English speaking students with literary resources and does not reflect students’ full potential. So he founded ScholarJet.
“Our mission is to unleash the potential of every student with action-based scholarships so they can help create a better future,” says Ho. “Essays shouldn’t be the only metric used to award financial support to hungry-to-learn students. We are bridging the gap between access to education and the private sector by providing value to businesses who want to generate a lasting impact.”
The average college graduate has $37,172 in student loan debt. Labor workforce growth is said to decrease from 1.2% to 0.6% by 2020, while forty-five percent of American students drop out of college, according to a 2016 NSC Research report. “We cannot afford to let our future workforce drop out of college because they cannot pay for it,” says Ho. “We are experiencing an unprecedented workforce that demands agile, highly-skilled labor. Therefore, we need students from diverse backgrounds to reach their full potential.”
ScholarJet charges a fee for organizations to create action-based scholarships on the platform – challenges students compete in by building their portfolio of key skills in graphic design, sales, 3D modeling, video or something else. They submit their work digitally while engaging with employers that align with their core values – connections that facilitate internship opportunities and access to diverse, highly-skills talent early.
ScholarJet was a 2017 MassChallenge cohort and finalist, is a Boston Pledge 1% member and has been featured in Microsoft New England’s blog, Streetwise Media/BostInno, Thrive Global, Boston Voyager, Color Magazine and Northeastern News.
More information can be found on the ScholarJet Blog.