Graduate School Funding

$4,740 of $5,910 goal

Raised by 38 people in 42 months
After five years outside academia, I'm no closer to my career goals than the day I earned my BA. Despite the conventional wisdom that suggests graduate students plunge ever deeper into debt; if I secure a TA position, NDSU's graduate program in English literature would compensate me for my tuition in full, and the accompanying stipend would help me pay off my undergraduate student loans far faster than any job I've found.

Unfortunately, there are three obstacles that have to be overcome before I can get into a graduate program. During my last semester of school, I was unable to secure loans for the remainder of my tuition. After five years, I'm down to $4600 owed. In order to have my transcripts sent to a grad school, I need to pay that debt off. That's by far the biggest thing standing in my way; and if I can only raise that much, I'll be ecstatic.


The second obstacle is $235 worth of fees for the GREs and the cost of applying to graduate programs themselves. Compared to the first, that's fairly trivial, but in my current financial situation, it could still take me months to save up.


Finally, while a TA position at NDSU would take care of my tuition expenses, and the accompanying stipend would give me enough to save what I need for future semesters and to pay down other debts, there are $1200 in other initial fees at NDSU that are *not* taken care of.


With even the initial $4600, I will make the rest happen. Really, with or without this money, I'll make it happen - eventually, somehow. But on my own, this whole sum would take me years to save. With your help, I can raise this money in time to attend in 2014 or 2015, rather than 2019 or 2020. If everyone who sees this message gives me $20, I'll make my goal easily, bringing my dreams and my career plans five years closer. But any amount will help, and any amount will be welcome.


I feel uncomfortable asking for any help at all. If I had to ask any one person for this whole sum, I couldn't do it. I was raised to believe that I should earn what I have, and I still believe that. But if 301 of you will place $20 worth of trust in me, I promise you that I will spend my time in school and in the career that comes after thinking of you every day, and working to earn that faith you're placing in me now. I'm confident that I can do that.


Thank you.


ETA: I've received $125 in donations through the mail. Since I can't add that to the donations received section without donating it, & thereby losing 5% to gofundme, I've instead lowered my total goal by $125 dollars.
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 210 total shares
Update 15
Posted by Charles Smit
29 months ago
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So, starting Thursday, I'm a Field Organizer for the George Sinner campaign for the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party ! This is essentially the job I've been doing the past few months, but in a different state and they pay me to do it. And of course, it's more like double-time than part-time. Among other things, this means I'm much more likely to be able to make enough money to enroll in grad school in 2015 - but if everyone reading this can spare $5, $10, or $15, it's a sure thing.
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Update 14
Posted by Charles Smit
38 months ago
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Another $90 to tuition today! If the rate of donations doesn't slow down, I'll be finished paying it off in under a year - literally ten times faster than I would on my own! Thanks to everyone who's helped out so far - and thanks to anyone who's thinking about it, or who would if they hadn't already given their money to an even better cause (world hunger is way more important than I am).
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Update 13
Posted by Charles Smit
38 months ago
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My tuition payment to Concordia was only $45 this month, with only one donor. Running a fundraiser like this is tough on me - my natural instincts say hey, maybe this is it - and if so it's been incredible! Thanks to all of you, I've raised $1500 towards my tuition. That's roughly the same as what I could afford to pay myself since graduation, all in just a few months. It's awe-inspiring, and whatever comes next I will always be grateful to each and every one of you.

But. I'm not giving up. On my own, It will still take me at least three years to pay this off, barring unforseen circumstances - some of which have already hit, as my apartment building was just sold to the city, necessitating a lot of time and money go into an unexpected move across town. I don't want to rely on the uncertain future or my own fortunes... especially not when you've shown me that this is possible.

If everyone who reads this gives $15, that's enough to have me at my fundraising goal. Isn't that incredible? I know 300 people on facebook - family, friends, old classmates - and together we've got the power to do incredible things. This isn't very grandiose compared to some of the achievements we could put together, really.

Just $15. That's all I need.
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Update 12
Posted by Charles Smit
40 months ago
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Another $260 down on my tuition. Made the payment earlier this month, which is hopefully the only reason it's a smaller payment. Prove me right?
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$4,740 of $5,910 goal

Raised by 38 people in 42 months
Created September 15, 2013
$3,000
Anonymous
3 months ago (Offline Donation)
$10
Anonymous
28 months ago
$5
Anonymous
29 months ago
$20
Anonymous
29 months ago
C
$20
Cathryn
30 months ago

Go for it, bro-cro! Hope you get the amount you need XxX

$5
Susan Crawford
30 months ago
TM
$10
Timothy J. Meyer
30 months ago

RWAAA-OOOUUU-OWWWR! (Shryiiwook for "Good luck, pal!")

JB
$50
Jennifer Babcock
36 months ago
SC
$10
Susan Crawford
37 months ago
SL
$20
Sarah Levin
37 months ago
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