Is this global innovation the start of a new funding era?

First-ever program launches a global crowd-funded scholarship initiative.

scholarship-uniplaces-fundingIt may not be the answer to every student’s plea for scholarship help, but one company’s global call-to-action may signal the start of a whole new way of funding students’ higher-ed journey.

The initiative, named the ‘Living The Dream Scholarship’, is the first program to support student mobility funded collectively by the global student community.

The initiative aims to promote kindness as currency, asking interested students applying for the scholarship to submit videos of themselves carrying out ‘random acts of kindness’ on fellow students. At least one scholarship will be awarded to a student in America.

Living the Dream is a program created by Uniplaces, which launched in 2013 and has quickly become a fast-growing international website for booking student accommodation. The company works closely with universities and professional accommodation providers, and is backed by many major investors, including Octopus Investments and the founders of Zoopla and LOVEFiLM.

“The financial pressures of moving somewhere new are a barrier for many students,” said Ben Grech, co-founder of Uniplaces in a statement. “At Uniplaces, we’re passionate about increasing student mobility across the globe and empowering students to have a healthy and happy experience at university. The Living the Dream Scholarship is testament to our commitment to breaking down social and geographical barriers for students. It offers the chance of financial support while at the same time inspiring students to be extra nice to each other from day-to-day.”

(Next page: How the Scholarship works and how students apply)