connecting china's students with their futures

The Huffington Post is profiling the Young Global Leaders attending the World Economic Forum's annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. Meet Calvin Chin, founder of Qifang, a nonprofit organization that utilizes social networking to help Chinese college students find a way to pay for higher education expenses: Investing In China's Future One Student At A Time.

For instance, take Winnie, a senior at Guanzhou University who couldn't afford paying two semesters' tuition due to an unfortunate turn in her family circumstances. Raising money on her own wasn't enough, but she was able to receive education loans from Qifang:
"Winnie still owed money for two semesters, about $700 USD. Her school couldn't give her a diploma until she paid. Winnie tried to raise money to help her family by selling things on campus, but it wasn't enough," Calvin recalled her predicament.

Calvin founded Qifang in 2007 to help students like Winnie complete their education. The nonprofit has a simple strategy utilizing social networking to connect university or graduate students who need money with investors looking to make a difference and a profit. The organization reduces investor risk by allowing them to invest small amounts, in multiple students at a time. Qifang fills a void in China's higher education system. According to the China Education and Research Network, approximately two million students received state education loans in 2006, while approximately 27 million students graduated from higher education institutions between 2006-2010.

Winnie is one of the thousands of students to have received educational loans from Qifang. After hearing about the organization from friends, she submitted her profile to the website and received microloans from eight people. Since then, she has graduated, gotten a job and paid everyone back.
In 2009, the World Economic Forum designated Qifang as a Technology Pioneer, making it the first Chinese organization to win the title. To learn more about Calvin Chin and the work Qifang is doing for Chinese students, go to the organization's website here.

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