Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Social Funds

Is your higher education worth the socialization?

Social networking sites are popping up everywhere on the web and due to the economic downturn many international students are chasing their dreams by creating profiles on social lending sites such as GreenNote, CollegeNet, Gradefund and Virgin Money.

There seems to be a slight shift taking place regarding an age old practicing question, "Can I borrow that." A number of these sites do nothing more than what students probably have tried before, asking family and friends for money. Catch phrases can be read as a community effort. Since when has education not been community based. Even online education facilities offer groups to join which are in one form or another a community. 

On the upside for creating a profile is your accessibility for gathering interest and or delivering the "Pitch" will be more convenient. Asking for the cash offers students a bit of wiggle room so they do not feel too needy. Not a bad idea, besides, a number of students do not have much to lose in the process because their way of life is embedded into this socialization of identity.

The problem I see with generating cash is the low level of disposable income source within the young demographic that these sites are targeting. The do it your self approach to the borrowing mechanism would be even better if the students could network within a future hiring organisation. For any individual or group wanting to invest in education this could be the next investment bubble. From an investors lens if a student turns out to be the next average paid employee your 6.5 percent or whatever you make on your investment could pay out  a solid return. To push the idea even further this social borrowing could foster a revolution of technology. 

Big ideas, like that catch phrase "think globally, act locally."