Peter Thiel has been giving $100k to students willing to skip college. Why? - Hindustan Times

Peter Thiel has been giving $100k to students willing to skip college. Why?

Feb 25, 2024 03:21 PM IST

Peter Thiel, worth $7.1 billion as per Forbes, said he extended the programme because according to him the US universities are ‘woke’.

Billionaire Peter Thiel has extended his fellowship programme that offers $100,000 ( 82.88 lakh) to the students who are willing to skip their college and start a firm.

Paypal founder Peter Thiel(Reuters)
Paypal founder Peter Thiel(Reuters)

Some of the applicants are planning to launch projects in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) and cryptocurrency, Business Insider reported. Thiel had started this programme way back in 2010 with a group of 24 young people.

He handed them $100,000 over a period of two years so that they could skip their college education and pursue entrepreneurial projects. More than 270 young applicants have participated in the programme since its launch 14 years ago, the report added.

ALSO READ: Peter Thiel made $200 million crypto investment before Bitcoin's bull run

According to report, Thiel had started this venture to prove that the American college system is not meant for everyone. However, it is not a disruptive take anymore and several young people do consider other routes to success. The workers with a bachelor's degree earn 31 per cent more than those with an associate's degree and 84 per cent more than those candidates with a high school diploma.

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Thiel, worth $7.1 billion as per Forbes, extended the programme because according to him the US universities are ‘woke’ and this inspired him to encourage people to steer clear. The billionaire, who has multiple college degrees from Stanford University, told the Journal,"Our view is it's still an outside game, getting people out.

Ex-Harvard president Larry Summers has called Thiel's effort as the ‘single most misdirected bit of philanthropy' during a 2013 conference, Tech Crunch had reported.

On the other hand, former Washington Post columnist and Harvard researcher Vivek Wadhwa had written in Tech Crunch that the friends don't let friends take education advice from Thiel.

He added that obtaining an "elite" Ivy-league education is unnecessary but a basic education and "completing what you started" sets students up for success.

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