Dr. Gary Michelson founded the Michelson 20MM Foundation to support and invest in cutting edge technologies, business models, and entrepreneurs. Michelson 20MM investments support initiatives that are technology-centered and have the potential to provide public policy recommendations that improve affordability, access, and efficacy in higher education through data and metrics.
Dr. Gary Michelson and his wife, Alya Michelson, formed the Michelson 20MM Foundation in 2010 (formerly The Twenty Million Minds Foundation) with one goal in mind: to tackle a broken textbook publishing model controlled by “The Big 5” (the nickname for the major trade book publishing companies in the United States).
The vision was lofty: create and provide for the use of a comprehensive, digital, higher education textbook library in an open-architecture platform to mitigate students’ expenses and, eventually, replace the costly commoditized textbooks of all high-enrollment general education courses.
In other words, build a new scalable publishing model to provide low-cost or free textbooks.
Michelson 20MM is dedicated to supporting and investing in leading edge entrepreneurs, technologies, and initiatives that seek to transform learning and improve access to educational opportunities that lead to meaningful careers.
The Michelson 20MM Foundation endows a limited number of grants to support nonprofit organizations that focus on the Foundation’s impact goals. These endowments are evaluated case by case, with our team rigorously vetting each prospective project for impact potential and mission alliance. One such initiative is the Michelson Runway, the world’s first social impact accelerator.
A featured project by Michelson 20MM, Runway is dedicated to innovation in higher and alternative education. Impact investments like the Michelson Runway forge a structured vehicle for Michelson 20MM to deliver patient, intelligent capital to sustainable startups that connect with the foundation’s mission. Michelson 20MM funds projects that engage with, and expand upon, its broader philanthropic and educational goals.
ACCELERATOR – Michelson Runway is the world’s first social impact accelerator dedicated to supporting innovations in higher education and career training.
FOCUS AREAS – We make targeted investments in three focus areas: Access and Success, Learning Technologies, and Workforce Development.
PORTFOLIO – Get insights and information about our overall approach to investments and the companies we’re working with to achieve our vision.