These 20 kids are paid to drop out of school and change your life


Each fellow will receive $100,000 from the Thiel Foundation as well as mentorship from the Foundation’s network of tech entrepreneurs, investors, scientists, thought leaders, futurists, and innovators.

Here’s a brief rundown of the class of 2014 Thiel Fellows.

Shantanu Bala (19, Phoenix, Ariz.): Using real-time video and audio information to communicate facial expressions digitally.

Vitalik Buterin (20, Toronto, Canada): Working on Ethereum, a technology that will allow people to build
advanced decentralized technology that will connect computers peer-to-peer as seamlessly as a web browser.

Benjamin Englard (18, Miami, Fla.): Combining computer science with psychology to make technology ever more personalized.

Adithya Ganesh (17, Plano, Texas): Has already co-founded IntentSense, a bionic glove that helps hand
amputees regain mobility and is now working with predictive data analysis to make health-care more personalized.

Grace Gee (19, Port Lavaca, Texas): Has already co-founded a company, CortexML, and is working to make data analysis more simple.

Ishaan Gulrajani (19, Philadelphia, Pa.): Has founded a startup that won an Apple Design Award and is
working to make it more simple for people to create software.

Lucy Guo (19, Pleasanton, Calif.): Has been making websites that are profitable since she was in 6th grade and will be working to make learning fun with a multiplayer game that allows students to do their work while playing a game.

Thomas Hunt (17, Saratoga, Calif.): Is working to cure cancer by developing drug screening technology.

Rebecca Jolitz (19, Los Gatos, Calif.): She already holds degrees in both physics and mathematics from UC
Berkeley and wants to change the development cycle of satellites.

Alex Koren (19, Bergen County, N.J.): He has already co-founded a company called Hyv and will be working to develop the next generation of crowd-sourced supercomputing to promote social good.

Conrad Kramer (17, Philadelphia, Pa.) A self-taught computer programmer, he is working with another Thiel Fellow to create a software that would make it seamless to move websites, documents and photos from your desk to your mobile device and back again.

Eliana Lorch (17, San Francisco, Calif): Is obsessed with neural nets, math, and recent developments in computer vision and voice recognition.

Fouad Matin (18, McLean, Virg.): Building software to make it faster for use to learn.

M. C. McGrath (20, Boston, Mass.): Developing an open-source software called Transparency Toolkit which allows investigative journalists to research documents very quickly without uncovering anything illegal, like corruption, civil liberties violations or human rights abuses.

Adam Munich (20, Buffalo, N.Y.): Hopes to mobilize X-rays.

Catherine Ray (17, Alexandria, Virg.): Finds mathematics beautiful and is using it to improve closed-loop detector adaptation in neuroprosthetics, computationally and mathematically modeling quasicrystaline patterns, and automating the behavioral classifications of lab-animal vocalizations.

Jarred Sumner (18, Lafayette, Calif.): Has already built Selfstarter, a crowdfunding platform that has helped entrepreneurs raise as much as $10 million and will be working to make it easier for anyone to start a business.

Martin Stoyanov (17, Novi Pazar, Bulgaria): Writing software to make it more efficient to read and manage email on the go.

Kaushik Tiwari (19 New Delhi, India): Wants to generate a technology that makes the hospital-patient relationship more efficient and transparent.

Ari Weinstein (19, Philadelphia, Pa.): Working with another Thiel Fellow, Conrad Kramer, to make
software that would make it seamless to move websites, documents and photos from your desk to your mobile device and back again.

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