Meti Basiri, co-founder and CEO of ApplyBoard, has transformed international education, guiding countless students toward brighter futures. His journey, steeped in personal experience, catalyzed ApplyBoard's inception. In a compelling conversation with CEO.com, Basiri shares insights into ApplyBoard's beginning, its impact on student mobility, the integration of AI, and his vision for a more connected world through education.

Basiri's story began over a decade ago when he and his brothers decided to study abroad. Amid language barriers and limited understanding of the process, their journey spanned months before securing admission to a Canadian institution. Their frustrating and time-intensive experience fueled their determination to simplify the process for aspiring students globally.

ApplyBoard emerged in 2015 as a platform dedicated to facilitating international mobility and supporting students in finding tailored programs across English-speaking countries. Basiri's recounting of ApplyBoard's purpose reflects his commitment to easing prospective students' often convoluted path. He speaks passionately about the platform's impact, assisting close to a million students and empowering them to make informed choices about their academic pursuits.

The core of ApplyBoard's success lies in its marketplace model, bridging the aspirations of students with the objectives of institutions seeking a diverse student body. Basiri articulates the platform's significance in offering transparency, affordability, and efficiency. He draws parallels between ApplyBoard's function and the streamlined process of booking travel, emphasizing the pivotal role transparency plays in empowering students to make wise decisions while unlocking financial benefits for institutions seeking global talent.

The conversation pivots to the integration of AI within ApplyBoard. Basiri speaks candidly about the platform's use of AI, particularly in refining its matching algorithm, which assists students in navigating the complex array of program choices. He emphasizes the need for a human touch, ensuring that while AI streamlines processes, it doesn't compromise the pivotal empathy-driven decisions that shape students' futures.

When delving into ApplyBoard's culture, Basiri emphasizes the company's diverse and inclusive ethos, fostered by employees from various backgrounds. He highlights the impact of COVID-19 on this dynamic, expressing a desire to restore the close-knit community spirit disrupted by the shift to remote work.

Basiri advocates for a hybrid model in the debate around remote work, recognizing the value of in-person collaboration while appreciating virtual work's flexibility. He believes that a balanced approach, with a blend of office and remote work, can harness the advantages of both worlds, enhancing innovation and collaboration.

Basiri underscores the transformative power of education in fostering global unity by discussing the world's current state. He envisions a world where diverse perspectives merge through education, promoting understanding and mitigating conflicts rooted in borders or differences.

Basiri's vision for ApplyBoard extends beyond facilitating academic journeys; it embodies a mission to create a more connected and harmonious world. His commitment to leveraging education as a tool for unity and progress reverberates through ApplyBoard's mission, reflecting a leader driven by business success and a profound sense of global responsibility.

Written by

Rachel Swan