TEEN
05/21/2013 06:25 pm ET

James Schuler, 19-Year-Old, Wins $100,000 Thiel Foundation Fellowship To Skip College (VIDEO)

Would you skip college if getting rich was guaranteed? For one high school graduate, he'll be swapping classes in favor of pursuing his own projects -- with the help of $100,000.

In May, 19-year-old James Schuler from New York was given a large check to put towards his online startup, after being chosen as a member of the 2013 Thiel Fellowship class. The program was founded by the former CEO of PayPal, Peter Thiel, as an incentive for young people to pursue their innovative ideas fresh out of high school -- without having to go to college first.

James was chosen after co-founding a healthcare transaction company called Eligible in high school. Now, with the fellowship funding, he plans to focus on a new Internet startup called FundElevator.com, a crowd-funding website for political candidates and non-profits.

"I firmly believe that education, what school you go to, is not everything," James explains in the video above. "Your resume should mean more than what school you went to."

The Thiel Foundation announced the rest of their third class of fellows earlier in May. The 20 chosen students -- including video game designers, fashion bloggers and a virology researcher -- cannot attend college, but they all receive $100,000 and mentoring for two years.

“You increasingly have people who are graduating from college, not being able to get good jobs, moving back home with their parents,” Thiel told the New York Times. “I think there’s a surprising openness to the idea that something’s gone badly wrong and needs to be fixed.”

What do you think about the Thiel Fellowship? Do you know any awesome teen entrepreneurs? Tell us in the comments or tweet at @HuffPostTeen.

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