Alright folks I'll get right to the point - I am short on money for my tuition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and am floundering in my attempts to pull the funds together by August 1. I have been saving like crazy, but am still coming up short. I cannot register for classes until I pay the remainder of my account balance with the university so any assistance is appreciated.
I am preparing to begin my second year at UIUC where I am pursuing a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance. I will spare the sob story but will explain a little bit about how I came to be a GoFundMe patron.
I was accepted to UIUC when I was a senior in High School at the Youth Performing Arts School. I had my sights set on this university as it was both a prestigious research institution and a renowned dance program (nothing of this caliber is offered in my home state of Kentucky). I could not attend UIUC immediately upon graduating in 2015. I have been financially self-sufficient since high school, but in the Spring of 2015 I had a myriad of unforeseen family circumstances strike and I found myself working full-time for one year prior to enrolling at UIUC. At 40+ hours a week, I was working in Louisville at Heine Brothers Coffee Company and Dittos Bar and Grill so that I could sustain myself and save for college. Against all odds, I finally enrolled at UIUC in the Fall of 2016. My lofty expectations were far exceeded in my first year. Not only is it an environment in which I thrive academically (3.8 GPA with an overtime course-load), but I have found a supportive home amongst my peers and professors. I was cast in 5 pieces throughout the year (the maximum being 6) and worked part-time at a local Urbana-Champaign coffee chain called Espresso Royale.
Here comes my plight. I was expecting to receive a grant from the university to subsidize my tuition expenses for my first year. Unfortunately, I did not receive this money as my wages from working full-time, along with my mother’s, placed me above the necessary income line to receive grant money. Although I do not receive ANY financial assistance from my parents, it was required that I include my mother’s income on my FAFSA because I am not a) married, b) with child, or c) military.
Here’s the good news – the dance department thinks I fit in well and increased my scholarship for my remaining years at UIUC. Additionally, through a lengthy paperwork process, I could prove to the university that I am self-sufficient (my father is incarcerated and my mother is … just not able to help) and was granted Independent Student status in the eyes of FAFSA. This means that from here on out, I will be receiving enough grant, scholarship, and federal loan money to cover all educational expenses if I can pay the remaining balance from my first year.
If you have anything that could assist me, I will be grateful. If you have any further questions, contact me. Thank you.
Also, GoFundMe takes 5% of all donations. If you would like to forgo this fee, my Venmo is @MaryKateFord and my SquareCash is $mkford2 and if you would like to send a check, contact me via phone or email - [email redacted]
PC: Natalie Fiol in Rebecca Nettl-Fiol's choreography, "In The String Room"
- Kimberly Leach
- Nicole Andre
- Deb Lester
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more