Friday, December 21, 2012

StudentLauncher: Kickstarter for Education

If you haven't yet heard of the Kickstarter phenomenon, it's a way to "crowdsource" funding for a project you may have. Instead of finding a large donor for your entrepreneurial venture, you can make a pitch to a wide audience and gather up lots of small (e.g. $25) contributions. In return each donor gets some small reward. For example, I've put together a Kickstarter project in order to pay for editing the first part of my sci-fi novel Life Artificial, but it's not quite ready to launch.

Now there is a site that enables the crowdsourcing of educational projects: The idea is simply explained in a graphic on the site's home page:

The projects can be quite ambitious. Here's the description of 'Pencils of Promise' from North Carolina State:
Currently 75 million children do not have access to education. Pencils of Promise aims to lower this number by as much as possible, building one school at a time in developing countries. These children have such promise in them and such a burning desire to learn. PoP at NCSU supports PoP's mission through awareness and fundraising. Only $25 sends a child to school for a year! You can make a difference. With $500 we can send 20 children to school for a year. Help us help others because a generation empowered empowers the world.
There's also a video.

If you read my post "The End of Preparation" (which we are turning into a book proposal), you'll be familiar with my argument that 1. students can do things that matter while they are students, and 2. education should primarily be about doing things that matter instead of preparing to do things that matter. has the potential to be a powerful enabler of that idea. Kudos to site creator Tom Krieglstein for this great idea.

1 comment:

  1. Much of the information comes from Mark Spolsky 'Education at a Glance', but presented in a neat way.