University of the People (UoPeople) is a non-profit private, distance education university.
University of the People was launched by educational entrepreneur Shai Reshef in January 2009.Although the university has no campus due to its online distance learning nature, it uses a shared office in California as an office of admission.
The first UoPeople students began classes in September 2009, studying for associate and bachelor's degrees in business administration and computer science. At that time, the school had no accreditation and did not charge any fees or tuition.
In February 2012, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded the University of the People a grant of $613,282 for the purposes of helping the university earn national accreditation.Two years later, the university was accredited for degree-granting programs through the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).In 2016, the university began offering an online MBA, which is not accredited by any business school accreditation bodies (e.g. AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS.In 2017, the University of Edinburgh partnered with the school so that graduates of the University of the People could complete a bachelor's at UE.That same year, Olympian Simone Biles became a student and a spokeswoman for the school, and in 2018 she set up a scholarship fund to help financially struggling students