Dallas-based GreenLight Credentials has been chosen to provide its blockchain platform to the Texas College Bridge, a collaboration of the Texas Education Agency, the Texas Impact Network, The Commit Partnership, and institutions of higher education in Texas.
The Texas College Bridge, in partnership with the Texas Education Agency, is dedicated to helping students across Texas become college ready. Per a statement, more than 100 independent and charter school districts in the state have already signed up, including Dallas ISD, Amarillo ISD, Mesquite ISD, and Bastrop ISD.
The Commit Partnership, a local nonprofit that works to ensure all North Texas students receive an equitable education, chose Greenlight’s blockchain technology to power the program, which gives control of records back to the students.
GreenLight connects students, educators, and businesses by providing a way for users to securely share their lifelong learning achievements with educational institutions, students, and employers.
“GreenLight is the economic mobility platform of the future,” Manoj Kutty, CEO of GreenLight, told Dallas Innovates. “By enabling students to get 24x7x365 access to all of their verified academic records—transcripts, recommendation letters, certificates, badges, medical immunization shots—they can securely and instantly share their credentials with colleges, scholarships, employers or lenders.”
Texas high school seniors will be able to take college ready courses via GreenLight. The Texas College Bridge will provide more than 6,000 students with a GreenLight eLocker that hosts Math and English courses needed to demonstrate college readiness.
Upon course completion, a verifiable Certificate of Completion is added to the student’s locker. Students can then electronically share the certificates and other records (transcripts, achievement badges, resumes, and more) with colleges.
Kutty compares the process to moving your money around—if you can do that electronically, why not student records?
“Blockchain permits the instant verification of a record received from a student applying for a job or a job seeker,” he says. “Before GreenLight came into being, students had to contact the registrars of the institutions they attended and request them to forward their records to third parties. This is slow, inefficient and definitely not modern.”
Greenlight is all about putting the students first, while bringing college and career success into the future with digital lifelong learning records. The startup was founded in Dallas in 2018 by Kutty and Eric Reeves, the general counsel and chief data trust officer.
It is currently self funded and employee owned, but received support from the Communities Foundation of Texas and the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation.
Three early adopters of GreenLight were Dallas ISD, Dallas College, and UNT Dallas. More than 40,000 students from these institutions have since shared their records with 1,000-plus colleges and employers—without having to go their registrars.
Kutty says to think of the technology like a verified LinkedIn: Records written into a student’s electronic locker are always done by the institution that awarded the credentials, never an unverified claim made by a student. It’s what he calls a multi-billion dollar market.
“GreenLight reduces barriers for students to achieve their fullest potential, whether it be getting into college or employment,” Kutty says. “It’s a challenge to put all of your verified records together to submit a college or job application and many students drop out of advancing their careers because they find it difficult to navigate through this process.”
The benefits of the tech is two-fold, though. Greenlight hopes to make it easy for employers to find talent by making the process less cumbersome and expensive.
That process makes Greenlight ready-made for the challenges of COVID, too. The pandemic has made it challenging for students to quickly connect with their institutions to receive records. With Greenlight, there’s no longer a need to visit a physical person to obtain records.
According to Kutty, Greenlight is currently seeing significant interest from institutions that want to make sure no student is left behind and unattended. Greenlight recently partnered with UT Southwestern to offer mental health screenings and physician support for students, teachers, and administrators.
From here, Kutty is excited to offer all Texans the ability to instantly access and share their verified academic and health records by their phone or computer.
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