#Asia This PH edtech startup aims to set up high school kids for life

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Edukasyon.ph aims to narrow the information gap high school students face each year, especially for those from marginalised areas

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Life after high school has always been a transformative chapter in a person’s life, especially when shaping their future career. Unfortunately, depending on one’s socioeconomic status or their geographic location, the experience of applying for one’s dream university can either be conveniently easy or extremely difficult.

Such gaps exists in countries like the Philippines, where application processes are decentralised and fragmented, along with fairly limited guidance on the application process from public high schools.

Hundreds of Philippine universities have their own unique entrance exams and a lot of them also require students to submit hard copies of their applications.

Because of this policy, provincial applicants need to spend more money to visit top colleges and send in applications that may get lost in transit, as compared to their peers living in the city.

The challenge is even more complicated for students with no means to pay for their education. Plus, the stakes are high to find the right education fit for a job that will be immediately financially rewarding.

Life is hard for a confused provincial public high school student in the Philippines; but perhaps one startup can change this status quo.

Enter Edukasyon.ph, a platform that works as a career tutor in which students are connected to an online map of careers, degree offerings and schools in the Philippines — including scholarship opportunities.

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Officially launched by Henry Motte-Muñoz in June 2015, the platform is an aggregator of the country’s education and job information that hopes to provide more clarity to students who lack information when applying to their dream post-high school option, be it classes for their chosen major or the career path students see themselves taking in the future.

As an edtech startup, Edukasyon.ph works with local colleges and industry associations to help improve their online facilities, particularly application submissions and a payment features on the given platforms.

Freeing up information

“I want to be a…” is the first open-ended statement Edukasyon.ph makes.

The visuals showcase various smiling careers that students can click through to discover about the nature of the job, the expected salary, the degree offerings they can take — including videos of career professionals who talk about their journey in the job.

After clicking on a career choice, students are directed to a more narrow set of choices for their major, followed by a filter for a college search where the chosen major is available. Filters such as degree type, region, and average tuition are available.

“You’d be surprised how clueless students are in their desired careers and how many universities don’t have this information readily available on their website, especially college tuitions.” Muñoz tells e27.

“Because of this, we have cases where students and their parents cannot pay their tuition fees as easily you’d expect. We allow these universities to be transparent about such information, and we update our database accordingly. Worse, because their choices are driven by misguided education to employment possibilities, they end up taking degree offerings that have an oversupply of college graduates – thereby finding themselves competing for no longer available jobs,” he adds.

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Edukasyon.ph’s database is complete with information taken from private colleges, Philippine government agencies such as the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED). The startup is also working on partnerships with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

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The edtech startup works closely with the government’s Department of Education (DepEd) to host various educational roadshows that are class tutorials with high school students about their future careers.

To date, over 90% of Philippine universities are already included in its internal database.

#CareerGoals

The goals of the startup are simple yet clear – more students in the Philippines should get the right advice on education for the careers in which they aspire.

With the right education, students are better prepared for the corner of the world they want to work within, Muñoz explains.

By reducing barriers to entry, Muñoz hopes the Philippines will have a stronger workforce in the years to come. He also hopes that by providing open source information about educational opportunities, students can make better informed decisions.

This may dissuade them from dropping out of their majors because they either do not enjoy the field of studying or they could no longer afford to pay the tuition.

Simplify, Simplify, Simplify

To even further simplify the school selection and application process for students, Edukasyon.ph has included student-friendly features such as Quick Connect, Quick Apply, and Quick Pay.

Quick Connect is a messaging feature that allows students to chat with a university representative who may need more clarification on certain requirements, or on tuition fees.

Quick Apply provides a similar feature as The Common Application found in the US and the UK. Students do not have to continuously re-enter their online applications for every college, and the application is promptly sent to the university’s database.

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With Quick Apply, Edukasyon.ph cuts any chances of lost applications and tries to standardize the admissions process for each Filipino student. Universities will also have the option to download all these applications easily.

Lastly, Quick Pay allows online payments which several universities struggle to set up by themselves. By having this service, students can easily pay online, saving them time and effort.

Any student who visits Edukasyon.ph can use these features for free, as well as the database. Universities need to set up an account with the Edukasyon.ph team in order to have Quick Connect, Quick Apply, and Quick Pay.

Your education-to-career guide

As for the future, Edukasyon.ph aims to complete its next suite of products that will fast-track and ensure a seamless transition from education to careers.

This includes its continuous collaborative work with government agencies and industries in working with senior high schools that are newly implementing the K12 education system in their schools.

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Talks are already ongoing on to bring the same platform in countries where education-to-career information is unavailable for students and schools. The startup is also slated to have an updated website this coming March.

“As early as now we need to invest in equipping students with the right educational choices that are geared towards careers. We want them well equipped with the education to become the talent that the world of work needs. We think Edukasyon.ph gives them the choice, advice, convenience to push that way forward,” Muñoz concluded.

The post This PH edtech startup aims to set up high school kids for life appeared first on e27.

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