Peter Thiel, the PayPal co-founder and one of the first investors in Facebook, is proposing a controversial path toward more rapid innovation. Today his Thiel Foundation announced that it was giving 24 people under 20 $100,000 fellowships to drop out of school for two years to start a their own companies.
Some of the recipients are leaving first-rate institutions like Harvard and Stanford to take the fellowship. In a press release, the foundation’s head, James O’Neill, said that in taking the fellowship they were “challenging the authority of the present and the familiar.”
The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that Thiel thinks ideas can develop in a start-up environment much faster than at a university. And the project is also intended to question the idea of higher education.