Grantoo launches grants for gaming scheme

Trivia tournament offers college tuition grants as prizes

Grantoo and WePay are launching an online social gaming tournament that gives American students the chance to win grants for college fees.

The games will go live on April 8 and will be open to 40 US colleges, including Yale, Duke and Stanford. The prizes start at $50 and go all the way up to $10,000, to be spent on education or associated costs.

To make it all happen Grantoo works with companies to sponsor game tournaments, and even students who don't win at the free-to-play games can earn discounts. Winners are expected to share at least 10 per cent of their prizes with one of a number of charities, including Engineers Without Borders or The Hunger Project.

"It was completely crazy five years ago because social games were just beginning," co-founder Dimitri Sillam explained to GamesBeat.

"We saw students playing all the time, and I wondered if we could create a branded game that gives money to pay a student's tuition."

A recent beta tournament saw one winner walk away with $2000 in winnings.

"Today, 60 percent of college students drop out of school due to rising tuition costs," added Sillam.

"We are looking to partner with brands that are charitable and want to give students a helping hand because there is a real problem of students needing help paying for their education."

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