What is the Liger Leadership Academy?
The Liger Charitable Foundation is a U.S. charity founded on July 24, 2009, by Trevor and Agnieszka Gile. He is a securities trader, she is an entrepreneur, and both had come to love Cambodia. They began a school to create a new generation of leaders for the country. Liger Leadership Academy’s pilot program, develops entrepreneurial and empathetic graduates. These graduates are able, passionate, and committed to improve their lives as well as lives their fellow Cambodians.
Students live on a residential campus that offers full, six-to-eight year scholarships for economically disadvantaged students. The first batch began in the Fall of 2012 and is scheduled to graduate in June of this year. Nine of the students were offered early acceptance to top universities in the United States (like Princeton, Northwestern) with full financial aid.
How does Liger Leadership Academy use Bento?
Although the campus is in Cambodia, Liger is incorporated in the U.S. and is partly governed from London and New Zealand. Because Bento operates on the Visa platform, the cards are accepted everywhere. Some of the major uses of the cards are:
- Paying for standardized testing and applications to U.S. universities.
- Purchasing software for students and administrators, and covering costs of travel.
“We can manage online the limits of how much can be spent each day on each card and easily track where and how money is spent,” says Martin Timmins, Liger’s Treasurer.
How is Liger Leadership Academy Funded?
Funding to date has been provided by the Giles, but now that the first cohort is graduating and the educational model has been proven. Liger is searching for external investors to support the Liger Leadership Academy in Cambodia and possible expansion into other locations. Of course, it’s all slowed down by COVID-19. Liger Leadership Academy has had to close its physical doors. Each student was sent home with an internet booster and laptop in order to access teachers, classes, and fellow students from their homes.
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