AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to help students find more money for college more quickly and easily, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, in coordination with National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA), introduced the Scholar Snapp(TM) solution (www.scholarsnapp.org) at the NSPA annual conference in New Orleans. The Scholar Snapp solution is a web-based solution for scholarship applications that allows students to complete an online scholarship application, and then re-use the information with other scholarship providers without retyping their data repeatedly.
Recent reports estimate that only one percent of American colleges and universities are planning to provide enough aid to meet all of a students' financial need.(i) With secondary institutions cutting back on the amount of aid that they are providing, those students must search for more sources of financial aid. According to a recent New York Times article, those same public schools increased student costs "by an average of 6.5 percent last year."(ii)
"Worrying about how to pay for college is hard enough without spending extraordinary amounts of time having to fill in the same redundant information on each application," said Kevin Byrne, Portfolio Director, Education at the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. "The Scholar Snapp solution enables both students with better access to scholarships and providers with a larger pool of pre-qualified applicants by streamlining the application process."
"The NSPA welcomed the opportunity to work with the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation on the development of the Scholar Snapp solution," said Amy Weinstein, NSPA's Executive Director. "The Dell family foundation's innovative spirit and technical abilities helped drive the creation of the solution, which will certainly transform the scholarship industry." She went on to add, "We are working to adopt of the Scholar Snapp solution with as many NSPA members as possible, so that more students can apply for more scholarships and so scholarship providers can benefit from automated scholarship application processes and targeted applicant pools."
Students can reuse information on multiple applications
Students spend a lot of time applying for scholarships, retyping the same information repeatedly. The Scholar Snapp solution lets students reuse the information entered on one application to apply for multiple scholarships and find more money for college. Ultimately, the solution is intended to provide students with easier access to more scholarships.
Scholarship providers can increase visibility
Scholarship providers that implement the Scholar Snapp solution can increase their applicant pool with quality applicants without having to increase their advertising and marketing budgets. Since the solution allows computers to automatically process scholarship application data regardless of the source, it also allows scholarship providers to share scholarship applications seamlessly.
Additionally, it can provide a bridge between scholarship software tools that were not originally designed to work together. The Scholar Snapp solution uses XML (eXtensible Markup Language), which allows information systems to share structured data.
The Dell Scholars Program, an initiative of the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, is one of the first scholarship providers to use the new Scholar Snapp solution. The Dell Scholars Program application for the Class of 2010 opens on November 1 and applicants will be able to reuse their application information on other scholarship sites that have implemented the solution. Additionally FastWeb.com, Scholarships.com, ScholarSelect and Zinch.com have implemented the Scholar Snapp solution and adoption by many more providers is underway.
About the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation
The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation (www.msdf.org) is dedicated to improving the lives of children living in urban poverty around the world. With offices in Austin, TX, New Delhi, India, and Cape Town, South Africa, the Dell family foundation funds programs that foster high-quality public education and childhood health, and improve the economic stability of families living in poverty. The foundation has committed almost more than $530 million to global children's issues and community initiatives to date.
About the National Scholarship Providers Association -
The National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA) is the national professional organization for scholarship program administrators, with more than 250 scholarship providing members. NSPA's mission is to advance the collective impact of scholarship providers, and the scholarships they award, by sharing best practices, providing professional development opportunities, and promoting student access and success in higher education.
SOURCE Michael & Susan Dell Foundation