Gates Foundation Seeks to Improve World Literacy Rates

enhance writing levelsBill Gates is known for many things: he helped kick start the personal computer revolution; he is a maverick software developer; he founded one of the biggest companies in the world; and he is the richest person on planet Earth.

In recent years, however, Gates has rebranded himself from a software and technology tycoon to a humanitarian and philanthropist.

One of his biggest projects in recent years is to raise the educational and living standards of students all across the world. Whether it be students in his home country of the United States or the students in third-world, developing nations, Bill Gates has a strong belief that education and access to education is the way to better humanity.

Improving Literacy Rates Worldwide

Recent studies show that learning to read even as late as your 30s can significantly improve brain cognition, which shows improving literacy rates isn’t just something we should focus on for children. Not only do improved literacy rates produce a huge practical benefit to a population, but they also improve the individual’s brain cognition—for all age groups.

It is no doubt that the Gates Foundation has seen similar studies showing the benefits of such reading skills, which explains why the Foundation is such a supporter of reading and writing skills. Whether you want to learn basic writing skills, basic reading skills, or advanced usage topics, the Gates Foundation seeks to help students globally.

Efforts in the United States

While the Gates Foundation is active all across the globe, let’s focus on some of the educational projects it has here in the United States.

Since Bill Gates comes from a business background, it shouldn’t be surprising that he is results-driven. What this means in practice is that he and the Foundation don’t necessarily mind shaking up things in the educational establishment.

This has led those from both sides of the educational debate to criticize him and his efforts. His support for Common Core has caused outcries from those on the right, and his support of charter schools has caused outcries from those on the left.

In short, he wants to see results and doesn’t want to get bogged down in the process. In order to get kids reading and writing better, they need to learn the basics. This means instruction of basic grammar, word usage, and the like. If a high-school senior can’t tell the difference between loss and lost, how can they be expected to write a coherent resume?

This is a serious problem taking place in American schools right now. One of the most basic things in education, learning to read and write, our schools cannot teach. In large urban areas, upwards of 90 percent of students are not proficient in reading.

Again if a student can’t read, how can we expect him or her to write? Students writing skills have been declining for years. Forget tricky parts of the language like allude versus elude, these students can’t even write basic sentences.

This is why Bill Gates and his foundation are so passionate about raising literacy rates. Language helps us communicate, better our lives, and enrich our souls. Without it, we are destined to fail.

Gates’ CPA Firm and Financial Advisors Handle His Investments

cpa-investment-advisorsBill Gates has been the richest man in the world 18 out of the last 20 years according to Forbes. This is no easy task, especially since Bill quit working full time at Microsoft over a decade ago. How does he stay at the top of the Forbes richest people’s list? One explanation could be accountants and financial advisors.

Deliotte is the CPA firm that Microsoft has used for decades to audit its financial statements among other things. It was reported that Microsoft paid Deliotte over $46M in audit fees for the 2015 fiscal year. This type of fee encompasses numerous operations performed by Deliotte, but it does not include assurance fees and other risk management fees. Microsoft employed a separate CPA firm to handle its investment activities and reportedly paid twice as much for these services.

Obviously, Bill Gates is not Microsoft anymore, but he has used several of the same accounting firms in the past few decades to handle his personal fortune and prepare his tax returns. The bulk of Gates’ finances are managed by Cascade Investments, LLC. This investment firm invests his money to hedge it against inflation and grow faster than the market rate of interest.

Today they have invested most of his portfolio in a national waste management company, national car dealership, and several hotel changes. He has a bulk of his fortune invested in think tanks and research facilities that write cpa exam prep books, business journals, and scientific studies on the environment.

Gates has also used his funds to found a social network for scientific researchers. The idea behind this is to create a place where brilliant minds can discuss ideas about scientific and technological advances. Hopefully, the next big break through in artificial intelligence will come from a network like this.

Gates financial advisors have also invested in numerous writings, books, and historical artifacts. He purchase a Da Vinci manuscript that documents many of his scientific discoveries, inventions, and thoughts. He reported paid over $30M for this book. He’s also invested in several education companies that produce materials for under privileged youth. These educational materials mainly focus on the topics of business, finance, economies, and computers. Two of the main books handed out to students are a cpa exam guide and the Adam Smith book of economics.

Gates’ CPA has also advised him to park much of his money in artwork. He reportedly has an expansive art collection including the Last on the Grand Banks that reported sold for more than $36M.

Don’t forget that Gates is also very charitable. He gives away billions of dollars each year to needy people around the world. His accountant and CPA probably help him make these decisions as well.

Bill Gates’ Pacific Northwest Home

Bill Gates famously broke away from Silicon Valley during the computer revolution of the 1980s. After Gates dropped out of Harvard in Massachusetts, he decided to locate his computer software empire in the Evergreen State.

Not many people are aware of this, but Bill Gates family is from Washington, so it makes sense that he would locate his company there. If you combine this with they fact that Washington doesn’t have an income tax, it actually makes great business sense to move there.

Bill’s Modern House

Microsoft was founded in 1975; fast-forward to today and it is one of the world’s largest companies and Bill Gates, its cofounder, is the richest man in the world.

So what kind of house can you expect the richest man in the world to occupy? Exactly the kind you might think.

Gates’ pacific lodge is an astounding 66,000 square feet mansion that overlooks Lake Washington. Bill Gates isn’t the only one who enjoys living in a luxury lakefront home. People all across the United States flock to lakefront properties, including Lake Michigan lakefront homes in Grand Haven, Spring Lake, and elsewhere.

You don’t become the world’s richest man for not having good taste.

Value Of Bill’s House

Not only is the house a lakefront home, but it also is 66,000 square feet. How much do you think a house like this costs? It took seven years to build and cost an estimated $63 million. Now that is a crazy price tag!

Since the home is situated on a prime piece of land, the actual cost of the house is just a portion of its overall value. The property itself is worth over $150 million.

Getting Your Own Luxury Home

For those of you who think you’ll never be able to own your own luxury lakefront home, do not fret. Bill Gates lives in one of the most prestigious and desirable locations in the Pacific Northwest, so this makes his home artificially high in cost, not to mention the fact that it is 66,000 square feet! Let’s face it, not many of us would ever want to own a home that big. He pay over a million dollars a year in property taxes alone! And that doesn’t even include maintenance on the house.

No, the average person should look to a different kind of luxury home, located on the beautiful lakes on Western Michigan. West Michigan is home to some of the best lakes and beaches in the entire United States.

The lakefront homes in Spring Lake are just as modern and luxurious as anything that you will see on the West Coast, albeit slight smaller and they have a much smaller price tag.

West Michigan is one of the best kept secrets in the United States that boast top quality realtors looking to get you in the best house possible. Teams like J. Harpe Lake Michigan Realty specialize in putting ordinary people in luxury home all through West Michigan and you could be next.

Who says you have to be Bill Gates to have a nice home? Isn’t it the American dream?