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FundsV is quite friendly and easy enough for anyone to use. I like it also because of its considerable live chat service; the representatives are very patient and kind to answer every question that we have! -- Ziwen Guan, a student from China currently pursuing a Computer Science degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey

FundsV is a great asset for us! We mention FundsV in all of our communication with applicants, and strongly encourage them to use this convenient service. -- Claudia Maloney-Alves, Assistant Director and Designated School Official for International Admission and Recruitment at Lewis University in Illinois

Cheryl DarrupBoychuck and her ventures, USjournal and FundsV have been at the cutting edge of international student mobility for nearly 20 years, delivering innovative solutions matched with outstanding metrics to guide and refine institutional promotion efforts. As a partner and collaborator, Cheryl is incredibly generous with her insights, and shares my passion and commitment to advance the movement of students around the world. Cheryl delivers what is promised, and more; she is relentless in seeking to understand what works and what doesn't, and in getting to the bottom of those misses. Working with partners like FundsV is crucial to meeting the challenges of the future, and I greatly value the opportunity to partner with Cheryl and her team. -- Christopher Johnson, Director of International Programs at Fairfield University in Connecticut

FundsV Facilitates the Fight against Fraud

While combatting fraud is an on-going battle, there are ways to improve efficiency and integrity in the advancement of global student mobility. The requirement to prove sufficient funds offers a prime example. By developing a robust platform that combines trusted partners on the ground, along with the electronic transfer of online banking data, FundsV provides a secure alternative to the current cumbersome paper-based model. Specifically:

Identity Authentication: FundsV employs the most robust security and privacy methods used by the world's leading banks, informed by Know Your Customer and Anti-Money Laundering guidelines.

Detection of Duplicate Access: If a bank account within FundsV has been accessed more than once by different students or sponsors, FundsV automatically alerts both the student and the host institution.

Multiple Balance Verifications: In just a few minutes, bank account holders may refresh their 90-day balance histories within their FundsV profiles -- enabling qualified students or sponsors to substantiate their financial capacity over time.

Increasingly, consumers are embracing their personal responsibility in managing their digital footprint. FundsV empowers students and sponsors to point their online banking data to authorized institutions, to equip all players with more robust tools in the fight against fraud.

FundsV addresses Pain Points in facilitating global student mobility

International educators (namely, clients of USjournal.com) expressed frustration in effectively qualifying prospective students. Admissions counselors needed a better way to authenticate their applicants' financial documentation, earlier in the admissions cycle, to improve their yield or conversion from a generic student inquiry to a qualified applicant and eventual enrollee.

Governments of several top host countries are currently reforming their student visa policies, which must include a more sophisticated means to verify sufficient funds. Authorities recognize the vital importance of ensuring that their visitors do not cause undue stress on domestic resources.

International students themselves (and their sponsors) appreciate the online option to securely satisfy the financial requirements of their hosts. The current practice of proving sufficient funds is cumbersome and time-consuming, with ample opportunity for fraud by illegitimate applicants.

The Solution: FundsV

Founded in 2009, FundsV is designed to significantly improve the efficiency and integrity of verifying funding sources of prospective international students and scholars around the world. The organization's proprietary communications platform allows for the secure and reliable exchange of financial information, so prospective students can satisfy host requirements with speed, certainty and confidence. The automation and standardization of the funds verification process can lower costs, reduce operational risk and minimize inefficiencies of current procedures.

FundsV (a finalist in GoAbroad's 2012 Innovation Awards) has emerged out of its beta in the U.S. market. The funds verification service is now available to other campuses, counselors and other service providers in the United States and other host countries.

The core functionality of FundsV involves bank account balance verifications; namely, empowering the student and sponsor(s) to point their online banking data to the host that requested it. We provide a robust alternative to paper bank statements, or similar documents that are scanned and uploaded. With FundsV, the host no longer needs to eyeball those documents for authenticity; the data is transferred electronically, improving the efficiency and integrity of the process. Learn more about how FundsV works:

FundsV on Vimeo  FundsV on YouTube  FundsV Working Group on LinkedIn

To schedule a demo, contact cheryl@FundsV.com.

History of FundsV

Cheryl DarrupBoychuck is FundsV's founder and chief architect. She has been working in international education for more than 20 years, inspired by a semester at the University of Melbourne in 1989. She formally began her career in international education by promoting academic programs in Ireland to students in the U.S. In the mid-1990s, Cheryl started working for a magazine focused on advertising U.S. campuses to recruit international students. The U.S. Education Journal went online in 1996, and Cheryl acquired the company in 2000. USjournal.com (a limited liability corporation registered in Osceola, Pennsylvania) gradually expanded its multi-lingual capabilities, and now features 17 independent domains to serve particular language markets around the world.

The renewal rate of USjournal.com advertisers is quite high, so when an advertising campus does not renew, Cheryl personally tries to determine why. In 2006, the University of Denver did not renew. They were pleased with the number of inquiries USjournal.com generated for them, but few students actually enrolled due to the university's price tag of about $40,000. per year. If USjournal.com could qualify those inquiries financially, then the university would consider re-launching their promotional campaign. Financially-qualified inquiries would allow the university to focus their recruitment resources on students whose visas were likely to be approved, as they would satisfy the federal requirement of proving sufficient funds for tuition and living expenses.

Initially, Cheryl disregarded the notion because of privacy issues and the sheer complexity of the project. But the concept of funds verification kept percolating: There had to be a way to improve the efficiency and integrity of the process, not only in the U.S., but in other top host countries as well.

The FundsV Working Group

The group was assembled in June 2010 at the request of SWIFT, the Belgium-based Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication. Several of the world's top sending countries and host countries are participating in the group, with representation from their government (related to higher education and immigration), as well as their higher education industry. Follow the group's progress at Linkedin.com/groups/FundsV-Working-Group-435525

FundsV's founder, Cheryl DarrupBoychuck, conceived of the international student funds verification concept in June 2006. Initially, Cheryl investigated solutions with USjournal.com's own bank, Bank of America. One of their Senior Vice Presidents of Global Product Development directed Cheryl to SWIFT, whose executives encouraged Cheryl to explore options both within and outside of their network.

In June 2010, SWIFT's Innovation Team invited Cheryl to their Innovation Lab in Vancouver, where several new project leaders presented their ideas to a panel of SWIFT executives and venture capitalists. The idea of international student funds verification finished in second place. The concept caught the attention of SWIFT's Standards Banking Initiatives staff, who asked Cheryl to assemble a Working Group to develop global standards, ultimately in compliance with ISO20022.

ISO20022 is a universal financial industry message scheme; it is the international standard that defines the ISO (International Organization for Standardization) platform for the development of financial message standards. Its business modelling approach allows users and developers to represent financial business processes and underlying transactions in a formal but syntax-independent notation. SWIFT published a new authorities message class in 2013.

The Working Group meets three times annually: One conference call in the first quarter of the calendar year, an in-person meeting during the NAFSA: Association of International Educators' Annual Conference in the middle of the year, plus one conference call in the fourth quarter. To inquire about participating in our next Working Group meeting, contact cheryl@FundsV.com.

FundsV Timeline, 1996-present

1996 – U.S. Education Journal goes online
2000 – Acquisition of USjournal.com
2006 – Initial conversation with SWIFT
2010 – 2nd place finish in SWIFT Innovation Lab (Vancouver)
2011 – Beta with select U.S. Host Institutions
2012 – Finalist for Innovative Use of Technology Award
2013 – SWIFT releases a new authorities message class
2014 – Document Management Solution complements online data transfer

Benefits of Early Adoption

- Elevate a student's admission application by electronically verifying financial capacity

- Improve conversion of student inquiries to admitted students via a streamlined process

- Lower costs related to authenticating prospective students' financial documentation

- Reduce operational risk when qualifying candidates likely to secure their student visa

- Maximize efficiencies earlier in the recruitment process, to focus on students likely to enroll

- Access the financial industry's leading platform to reliably exchange financial information

- Contribute to the development of global standards, ultimately in compliance with ISO20022

What's Next for FundsV?

- Work with SWIFT to increase coverage of banks around the world

- Identify common data fields (and fundamental differences) among hosts, to advance global standards in coordination with SWIFT

- Integrate FundsV with host governments around the world, to improve the efficiency and integrity of the funds verification process

- Connect deserving students with generous donors, via appropriate group-gifting and crowd-funding mechanisms within social media networks

Claudia Maloney, Assistant Director for International Admission at Lewis University near Chicago

FundsV is a great asset for us!
We mention FundsV in all of our communication with applicants, and strongly encourage them to use this convenient service.

Data Security / Text
Document Management Solution
Fight against Fraud
Financial / Academic Authentication
Founder Profile
History of FundsV
How FundsV Works
Schedule a Demo
Privacy Policy / Terms of Use
What's Next?
Working Group

FundsV was named a finalist in GoAbroad's 2012 Innovation Awards
2012 Finalist

FundsV: Champion of Data Privacy Day

Document Verification Trust Scale, adapted from ece.org

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