Chesky donates $100m to Obama Foundation

US: Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky has pledged $100 million to the Obama Foundation to establish the Voyager Scholarship, aimed at supporting college students pursuing careers in public service.

The program, which intends to support 100 students in its first year, will provide financial aid ($50,000) to help college students cover tuition costs over two years. 

Candidates applying for the scholarship must be junior students at an accredited four-year college or university in the US. They must be an American citizen, permanent resident, or be a recipient of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program.

A $10,000 grant and Airbnb credit will also be awarded to fund a summer academic trip designed by the student. An additional $2,000 travel credit will be granted to scholarship winners after their graduation every year for the next 10 years.

In a video announcement, Chesky said: “So many people have a passion for public service, but they don’t go into public service because they can’t afford to. They have too much financial burden looming over them.”

Barack Obama added: “If we want the next generation of leaders to be able to do what they need to do, they have to meet each other. They have to know each other. They have to understand each other’s communities. You’re going to find young people from every corner of this country who are going to be future change makers. There are leaders everywhere. We just have to find them.”

As part of the program, students will also be invited to an annual summit to meet with Obama and Chesky and network with other Voyagers.

The deadline for applications is June 14. Further information about the Voyager Scholarship can be found here.