NextLeap – Ease Your US Education Dreams With Scholarship Finder and More

Applying to foreign universities has always been a pain for all who want to live the great American dream. More than scoring in the various tests, what bugs us is what tests to appear for and when? And even after the test we are still making half informed decisions on universities and scholarships.

NextLeap is a startup focussed in building tools around the process of getting into higher studies in US universities. The current offering include Application Planner, University Predictor, Scholarship Finder and University Suggestor. All tools are free apart from University Suggestor which comes in a freemium model.

A recent study by nextLeap shows that a meager 5% of students applying for scholarships know about more than 2 scholarships, whereas there are more than 50 scholarships worth a total of around Rs 10 crore up for grabs. There are various kinds of scholarships like interest free loans, travel grant and fellowships which cover tuition fee etc.  nextLeap’s Scholarship Finder tool will help students zero in on scholarships using detailed eligibility criteria, while sorting via deadline and amount.

University Suggestor, takes into account your undergrad college (currently only for Mumbai and Pune University), GRE score and undergrad score to suggest universities that best suit your profile. A premium version also offers you a SoP review and telephonic conversation with students graduated from American universities.

Though i haven’t tested the quality of results, the offering looks neat and addresses the various pain points around the US dream. The team aims to configure various independent tools into one complete product offering.

Here’s what the team has to say:

1. On the competition in this space.
– Every major city in India has a local overseas education counsellor, who runs a great lifestyle business. But, we don’t see any online counsellor in India providing a PAN India service based on datasets and technology.

2.  On larger content driven sites like StudyPlaces, Shiksha etc. attempting this.
-Shiksha and Studyplaces are in the listings and lead generation business. Ours is a heavily technology oriented and automated recommendation engine based on the huge datasets that we have collected over the past few years, when nextLeap was in a stealth mode. We are in the business of providing very personalized recommendations to the students. We will continue to add value to the students, which will make sure that we get adoption word-of-mouth and our cost of user acquisition is minimal. As your question itself says, these websites have invariably turned out to be content aggregators and nothing more.

The team is branding them self as NextLeap but the domain is, hope they don’t lose any potential users.

Do give the NextLeap and try and share about what do you think of this space?

[Naman is a startup enthusiast and has worked with couple of Indian startups as Product Manager. He is the founder of FindYogi]

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