This idea emerged from a brainstorming during our OpenIDEO meetup at NYU on November 5 which involves students from NYU and other schools in the city, as well as some young professionals.
Imagine Jane, a first-year generation student, who is considering applying to college. He has a great high school counselor who had helped her getting some financial aids for the colleges he want to apply. Jane is still worried because after talking with the sister of one of her friends who dropped out of college at the end of the first year, she realizes that there are a lot of hidden costs: books, notebooks, supplies for the dorm, etc.
Yet, one of the colleges she applied to sent her an email to make her an offer and informing her that she will also receive the College Kit Starter, which includes:
1. School supplies (text books, notebooks, pens, etc.) provided by local businesses and through the students / alumni sharing network.
2. Dorm supplies (mattress, kettle, etc.) provided by local business and through the students / alumni sharing network.
3. One financial literacy course and a course of her choice for free sponsored by the university and the state. (This could also be paid by a philanthropist).
Learning about the kit was crucial in Jane's decision to accept the college offer.
The College Kit Starter builds upon the collaboration between local businesses, students and alumni (who have created a sharing system of supplies), the university and the state.