The rising cost of higher education in India, both in the private as well as the government institutes, is a major cause of worry for Indian parents. Most middle-class families somehow manage to put their children through a decent education by sometimes spending more than half of their pay on their child’s education. However, the children who come from low-income families are the ones who suffer the most. Though this scenario directly implies a dearth of financial endowments by the government and other donators, you will be shocked to know that even after these financial problems, 24 % of the scholarships schemes available during 2008-12 went unutilised.
Now, what do you think can be the reason for this? Why is the available fund not being used when financial problems are so high?
The reason is a lack of awareness amongst the students about the various scholarships that can benefit them tremendously. For a student, finding a suitable scholarship can prove to be quite a tedious task. Scholarship providers, in most cases, do not resort to popular media outlets like television, radios, and newspapers due to the expense incurred through the use of these channels. School authorities and local newspapers, on the other hand, are very limited in their approach towards keeping a track of relevant scholarships and informing the students about them.
Owing to the prevalence of such a problem, the Buddy4Study platform was created so that children all over the country can be updated about the various scholarships out there which can make their education a much smoother affair. The various ways in which the platform is doing so includes the following:
Website: Identifying this gap between the providers and the receivers of scholarships, the founders of Buddy4Study took a huge initiative by creating a platform wherein students can browse through all the available scholarships. At the same time, the platform also allows scholarship providers to connect directly with students and create new funds and educational loans to help them. Created solely for the purpose of helping children and connecting them with individuals who want to help, www.buddy4study.com provides high quality, trustworthy, and updated information about scholarships and their overall application procedures in general.
Scholarship Guide Book and other offline measures: To help those poor children who do not have an online presence and to make scholarship awareness easier for all the children out there, the platform sells a directory guide “BUDDY4STUDY ENTRANCE EXAM AND SCHOLARSHIPS GUIDE BOOK” that sensitizes students and parents about these opportunities in detail. Also, it is due to Buddy4study’s efforts that many local newspapers in partnership with the platform have now started regular scholarship alert columns. The platform also takes measures like forming associations with different NGOs and Foundations for children and using their help in providing assistance in spreading awareness and applying for scholarships.
SMS Alerts: One of the most innovative and valuable modes of spreading awareness that Buddy4Study has started include timely SMS alerts to keep students updated about appropriate scholarships. The SMS alerts are tailored according to each student or social category, where the purpose and the eligibility criteria for the scholarship are aligned with the profile provided by the students while subscribing for the same. Every SMS includes details such as Scholarship Name, Eligibility, Application Mode, Deadline and Direct URL.
Scholarship Management Systems: Adding more to its accomplishments, Buddy4study is working on creating a window for corporations, schools, and colleges to aid them in creating their own Scholarship Management Systems. These systems are designed to give regular access to scholarship opportunities to the students associated with these institutes. They aim at segregating the institute’s database according to different eligibility criteria and then mapping the profiles of the students to the right scholarships.
Apart from the awareness measures, Buddy4Study was instrumental in identifying the huge setback that exists because of the small mistakes that students make while filling their application forms. In order to mitigate this problem, the platform also provides help to students in filling out their application forms. Also, innovative products like the Scholar Tracking System and Student Management Panel aim at tracking the growth of scholars so that they can be mentored and nurtured to achieve their dreams.