Peter Thiel Gives Whiz Kids $100K To Quit College, Start Businesses

It sounds like a reality show pitch: The legendary Facebook investor, PayPal founder, and thorn in the side of college deans everywhere announces what happens when 24 people, picked to live among mentors and innovation experts, stop going to school and start getting real–in business. 

One climbed Mount Kilimanjaro. Another started college in third grade. Another opened a business at age 9. And yet another scored 5580 on the SATs (on a total of 5 tests, but still).

Now they’re all getting two years of mentoring from a network of tech and entrepreneurial experts and $100,000 to start a business. The benefactor? PayPal founder, early Facebook investor, and Stanford’s least favorite alumnus, Peter Thiel. Least favorite because Thiel has been making waves by arguing that college is an overhyped, overpriced bubble, and that the world needs better ways to recognize young talent. It’s all been great fodder for debate, but little more.

Until today. Thiel just put a bit of his money where his active mouth is.

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