UniBrowse aims to help young school-leavers choose the right third-level course, and the start-up is now going global.
A former Siliconrepublic.com Start-up of the Week, UniBrowse was founded by college friends Kenneth Casey, Walter Holohan, Niall Cronin and Alan O’Beirne.
Following its Irish launch in December 2016, it was announced today (22 August), that the company is expanding to Australia, with further plans to launch in the US and the UK down the line.
Holohan and Cronin have recently relocated to Australia with a view to overseeing operations there.
‘When you’re finishing school, you feel like you’re being asked to make decisions that will impact on the rest of our life. This is daunting enough without the added complication of trying to sift through hundreds of college courses’
– ALAN O’BEIRNE
Going Down Under
O’Beirne, the business development lead at UniBrowse, explained why the team chose Australia as its next logical step.
“Australia is seeing an increase in college dropout rates, which is resulting in third-level completion rates being at an all-time low.
“From our research, the reason for students dropping out of college in Australia is the same as the reason here in Ireland: school-leavers just aren’t getting the right information when it comes to choosing their college course and they end up in courses that really don’t suit them.”
Making the decision easier for students
O’Beirne was keen to note that the idea for UniBrowse was born out of the difficulties all four co-founders encountered when it came to making a decision during their Leaving Cert exams.
He said: “When you’re finishing school, you feel like you’re being asked to make decisions that will impact on the rest of your life. This is daunting enough without the added complication of trying to sift through hundreds of college courses, some with little to no information available.”
UniBrowse works by providing a complete searchable bank of undergraduate courses, with students able to use keywords to narrow down their search. Once they find a course that piques their interest, they can then click in and find more details, right down to the modules offered and the possibility of studying abroad.
The second phase of UniBrowse will launch here in Ireland in September. While it is keeping schtum about the exact features of the new additions, it will be more focused on helping parents of school-leavers.
The company hopes to reduce the global dropout rates and be the industry standard when it comes to higher-education search platforms, with plans to include postgraduate courses in further updates down the road.