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College fundraising tips

The cost of college is high and climbing. Sure, financial aid is available and so are student loans (a form of debt that can never be forgiven, even in bankruptcy), but there’s another way to bridge the financial gap—crowdfunding. For many, crowdfunding for college education has become a necessity.

Start a college campaign

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Crowdfunding: The power of many

The beauty of crowdfunding is that it not only helps you raise needed funds for school; it also allows family and friends to support your goals and become part of your college success story. You may even get support from strangers in the GoFundMe community and others around the world. Every day, students raise money for tuition, room and board, school supplies, student loan payments, and other educational expenses on our free platform. Crowdfunding with GoFundMe has several advantages:

  • Easily tap into your social network to reach a wide audience of family, friends, and friends of friends.
  • Begin withdrawing funds as soon as you start receiving donations.
  • GoFundMe has a 0% platform fee and is free for campaign organizers.

Six crowdfunding tips for college

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1. Be specific

People are more likely to support you when you share clear dreams and goals.

  • Share what your hopes and aspirations are after college. What are your career goals, and what made you decide to take this educational path?
  • Be clear about your exact needs, and how much they will cost. Donors want to know exactly where their money is going.
  • Don’t be afraid to be honest and add a human touch to your list of needs—it will help donors connect with you.
kids playing guitar

2. Pledge your time

One creative way to entice people to donate is to pledge your own time to a charity or cause in return for donations to your crowdfunding campaign.

  • Promise to teach others a skill in exchange for donations of a certain amount (for example: commit to teaching 10 kids how to play the guitar before the end of your next semester).
  • Show donors that their money is going toward something productive and that you’re willing to give back.
  • Lend your campaign a positive, pay-it-forward aura—you benefit from the donation, and so do the people you help.
college students holding fundraising check

3. Prepare a social media plan

Social media is the easiest way to spread news of your campaign to your friends, family, and beyond. Sharing your fundraiser on social media starts with your personal and professional networks and grows to encompass those of your family and friends.

  • Sit down and make a list of people to reach out to through your social channels, including friends, family, teachers, colleagues, and local businesses.
  • Create a specific hashtag for your campaign, to make it easy for people to follow your campaign updates.

4. Reach out to alumni of your college

Many alumni welcome the opportunity to give back to their alma mater and help the students of the future. They want to ensure that students have the same opportunities they had and can access the resources that will set them on the path to a promising future.

  • Don’t be afraid to reach out; your university should have a way to connect with alumni—perhaps through its website, social channels, or via email.
  • You could also attend alumni events and promote your crowdfunding campaign.
young woman smiling

5. Update, update, update

Think of your campaign page as another social media channel. It takes only a few minutes to post an update from your phone or computer. Fundraiser updates can be about good news as well as challenges you’re facing.

  • Keep people in the loop. Where are you on the path to reaching your fundraising goal? What have you already used the money for? Why are these donations so important?
  • Share your thoughts with those who have already supported you, and you’ll inspire more people to become part of your story.
color run obstacle course

6. Pair social events with social media

Events are a great way to bring people together in support of your campaign. Campus groups like sororities, fraternities, and clubs can be great help in hosting events, in part because they already have a presence on campus.

  • Make it fun with one of these fundraising event ideas.
  • In your event invitation, encourage people to share your campaign link on social media—our data shows that each time you share your campaign, you will net an average of $43.

Start crowdfunding for your future

Ready to raise the funds you need to reach your goals? Start crowdfunding for education in just a few simple steps, and you’ll be at the head of your class in no time. Not only is the GoFundMe platform free to use, we also offer students a wide variety of free resources, fundraising guides, and tips that include college crowdfunding ideas. Start your free college campaign today.

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