Online University For All Balances Big Goals, Expensive Realities

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Naylea Omayra Villanueva Sanchez, 22, lives on the edge of the Amazon rain forest in Tarapoto, northern Peru.

"Where I live, there's only jungle," Villanueva Sanchez says through an interpreter. "A university education is inaccessible."

And that's true in more ways than one. Villanueva Sanchez is in a wheelchair, the result of a motorcycle accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down.

Villanueva Sanchez is now enrolled in the University of the People, an online institution that claims it is "the world's first, tuition-free, nonprofit, online university." It targets poor students around the globe who would otherwise not have access to higher education.

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