Ruchir, an aspiring entrepreneur from India, was a recipient of the Macquarie Group Scholarship through edX. The first named scholarship in edX’s Access for All scholarship campaign, the $1M Macquarie Group Scholarship Program aims to support economic recovery of low-income and underrepresented groups of learners in the United States, Australia, India, and the United Kingdom.
Ruchir used his scholarship to take Harvard’s Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies. Here’s what he had to say about his learning experience:
Why did you apply to the Macquarie Group scholarship program?
I never had a formal business degree as I couldn't afford to pursue an MBA, so I wanted some business-related certifications on my profile. When I had applied for a business loan, my application was rejected because I had no formal degree or certification related to business for convincing bank officials. The main reasons to apply to the scholarship program were to earn a certificate and develop business skills.
How has your learning impacted your career, life, or community?
When I received an email about my scholarship, I was very much happy and excited. I never expected it because within 24 hours, 15,000+ applications were received by edX for the Macquarie Group Scholarship.
My course Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies from Harvard had lots of interviews with social entrepreneurs and how they found an opportunity in social problems and created a business around it. They were able to create a sustainable impact with innovative ideas to tackle those problems. I learned lots of things about social entrepreneurship, various impactful business models, its importance in improving India's economy, etc.
Inspired by the business models presented in the course, I launched a website for providing free coaching to 10th and 12th grade students to make an impact on the lives of poor students. Low-quality education at school forces students to join coaching classes. Also, not all coaching institutes provide quality coaching. Plus 10th and 12th students from rural areas and slums face more challenges; they get neither proper education at public school nor can they afford dedicated coaching.
I think each and every poor student should get a chance to change their lives by getting a quality education. Since 10th and 12th std are important phases for any student, I thought it would be great if we provide free online coaching for 10th and 12th students.
How do you plan to use your learning in the future? What’s next for you?
Currently, I am refining my business model with more creativity, uniqueness, and impact. I am researching more and more about the education system, going in-depth, and finding more unique ways to impact the education system.
After completing my in-depth business plan I would like to apply for the incubation program of UnLtd India as they provide the best training to social entrepreneurs in India for free. They have supported 272 social entrepreneurs to date and impacted 15.66 million lives. I would love to be a part of it.
How was your experience learning online?
It has been a wonderful experience. Online learning has made my life easier. I can learn at my own pace and time, upgrade my knowledge easily, and learn from experts on any subject. Online learning is a boon for learners like me. Not everyone can qualify or afford to study in prestigious universities like Harvard, Oxford, MIT, etc. but platforms like edX have made it easy. I am happy and grateful that edX is offering high-quality education to the world for free and helping people like us to change their lives. Proud to be a part of edX! :-)
Are you a learner from Australia, India, the United Kingdom, or the United States looking for skills to advance your career? We encourage you to apply to the Macquarie Group Scholarship and begin your edX learning journey like Ruchir.