unconventional funding

3 Unconventional Ways to Fund a College Education

  12/30/2014 by    in Paying for College   2 Comments

Most students turn to financial aid to help fund their college educations, using a combination of student loans, grants and scholarships to help cover their expenses. But, what happens when that isn’t enough or you’re enrolled in a program not covered by federal financial aid? Sure, you could turn to private student loans or look into peer-to-peer lending to help pay your program fees, but that’s not going to help you stay out of debt. If you’re really interested in earning a degree or following some alternative pathways to a career without acquiring considerable student loan debt, you may want to take a look at these three unconventional ways to fund your education.

Try Crowdfunding

There are many crowdfunding websites available for just about everything, including those that can help you pay for your college degree. And, they are all fairly simple to use. Most will charge a modest fee for their services, but YouCaring.com is completely free. The trick is to create a campaign that is engaging and compelling. A great selfie also helps. But you can’t simply set up your crowdfunding page and walk away. You’ll need to leverage your social media skills and try to get some attention if you really want the donations to start rolling in.

Sell or Rent Your Body Parts 

If selling your story on a crowdfunding website doesn’t work, you can literally make money selling pieces of yourself. No, we’re not talking about an arm or a leg, but your reproductive organs could earn you a pretty penny. Guys, you could earn as much as $1,500 a month donating sperm. Most sperm banks are actively seeking healthy college men or those who already hold a degree, and best of all, it takes a minimal time commitment. Ladies, you too can cash in by donating your eggs. Egg donors can earn between $5,000 and $8,000 per donation, but it’s not as simple as donating sperm. It takes several weeks of doctor visits and the procedure does carry some risks. Another potential cash cow is surrogacy, but it’s not for everyone. Not only will you be renting out your body for nine months, there are emotional implications to consider, as well. But should you choose this path, you can expect to earn as much as $55,000 for helping a couple have a child.

Find a Sugar Daddy or Sugar Mama

Have you ever heard of sugar dating? It’s a new trend that is popping up on college campuses across the country. Attractive, young female students are pairing up with older men for financial gain. And yes, there are websites for young, hot guys to meet older women, too. Some may consider this glorified prostitution, but those who have dabbled in sugar dating swear there is no pressure to be physical on their dates. Both parties enter a mutually beneficial agreement and terms (payment) are arranged upfront. One website, SeekingArrangement.com, has been in business since 2006 and boasts over 3.6 million members. The company claims that the average sugar baby makes $3,000 a month and it does provide voluntary background checks to help ensure the safety of its members.

One thing to keep in mind, if you try your hand at any of these unconventional funding methods, is that any money you receive will be considered income, which means you could be liable for taxes. In addition, the money earned may also affect your financial aid package for the following school year. Think about all the potential ramifications, emotional and financial, before trying your luck with any of these options.

About Tamara Krause

Tamara is the Social Media Coordinator and a regular writer for eStudentLoan.com, ScholarshipExperts.com, and CampusDiscovery.com. She enjoys helping students prepare for college. As a mother of four, Tamara has first-hand experience with many areas of education, including special needs (autism), the International Baccalaureate program and post-secondary education. She enjoys speaking at schools and mentoring others online. In her free time, Tamara enjoys volunteering and supporting her favorite football team, the Jacksonville Jaguars.
  1. Shawn Lindstrom

    Sad, the National Organ Translpant Act of 1984 makes selling your organs (or those of a handy corpse) illegal. Of course, there are exceptions for non-organ donations such as plasma, bone marrow, and sperm or egg cells.