Raising funds from the general public
This is a way of gathering relatively small amounts of money from individual members of the public, which when combined might raise the total amount of funds to pay for a project. This is commonly done using a crowdfunding website. A few students have had success raising funds, using this system, to pay for their studies but these tend to be for postgraduate courses. Also, given that undergraduate study normally attracts funding like Student Finance, it is likely to be difficult to obtain funding towards the cost of a first degree programme.
Crowdfunding websites usually allow you to set a funding target, post a video outlining your studies and explaining why you are asking people to fund you, and allow members of the public to pledge funds online. You normally have to pay a fee to use these websites and you should also check the terms and conditions carefully before you sign up. Some schemes state that if you don’t reach your funding target in a certain time frame, the funds already pledged will be returned to the people who made them, although other schemes can offer more flexibility.
You can usually find a number of these organisations by searching the internet such as Hubbub, Justgiving and Gofundme, although be aware that the majority of crowdfunding websites are not aimed at helping people to raise funds for studies – more commonly they are aimed at helping entrepreneurs who are starting a business or charities and community groups who need to raise funds for a new project - but you may be able to find some if you search carefully.
When planning your funding campaign, think carefully about what is unique about you and what you plan to achieve during and after your studies. Potential funders are more likely to offer you funds if they believe in you and share your ambitions for how your studies will be of value to you and the wider community.
As with any financial planning, it is important to research possible options several months in advance so you can make alternative plans if you need to.
The Savethestudent website has useful advice about how to crowdfund your studies.
Law, regulations and policies can change quickly. The information on our website is given in good faith and has been carefully checked but QMUL cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions. QMUL is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites which are provided for further information.