About CMU Crowdfunding
- The CMU Crowdfunding platform is designated for university-related projects that impact and benefit CMU students and/or other entities within the CMU community, and with funding goals of $2,000-$10,000.
- Project leaders and teams must be directly affiliated with CMU (i.e. students, alumni, faculty, and staff).
- Examples of appropriate projects include a student club, organization, or alumni network looking to raise money for innovative creations, service trips, events, and other CMU-specific uses.
- Each project team must work with a designated Department Business Manager who is responsible for ensuring that funds are spent consistent with Carnegie Mellon University’s requirements and the project budget.
- CMU Crowdfunding is sponsored by University Advancement through the Office of Annual Giving. There is the standard 12% Administrative Fee charged on all gifts made to the university, including those gifts for CMU Crowdfunding projects.
- Each CMU Crowdfunding contribution is a charitable gift to CMU, designated to the project of the donor’s choosing.
- CMU Crowdfunding project campaigns are typically open for funding support for 30 days and remain on the site afterward to provide project updates to the donors.
- Gifts can be made to CMU Crowdfunding projects by anyone worldwide, provided they have a credit card. Payments must be made in US Dollars only.
- A project’s success is based in part on the amount of personal outreach and social media exposure generated by the Project Leader/Team.
- Visit the project pages to learn more, spread the word and support the project teams!
The Application Process
- Interested students should complete the online application.
- Upon submission, the CMU Crowdfunding Review Committee will consider all proposals and determine which projects will be included on CMU Crowdfunding.
2019-2020 Key Dates
Round 1 November 4 - December 3 Applications due by September 23
Round 2 January 27 - February 28 Applications due by November 22
Round 3 April 1 - May 1 Applications due by February 17
By submitting the application, the Project Leader(s) agree(s) to the following:
Attend an orientation session with the Project team to receive materials, tools and timetable.
Provide detailed budget for the Project and recognize that a 12% Administrative Fee is charged by CMU on the total funds raised.
Develop website content and produce a short video (1-2 minutes).
Identify at least ten individuals who can act as ambassadors of the project, completing social sharing and personal outreach throughout the campaign.
Develop a social media and marketing plan prior to the launch of the Project.
Maintain the project site and continue outreach until the Project closes.
Provide weekly updates during the crowdfunding campaign and after the Project is complete.
Meet all deadlines as outlined at the orientation.
Spend all Project funds as outlined in the original proposal.
Fulfill perks as outlined by the Office of Annual Giving within one week of campaign close.
Along with each member of the Project team, make a donation of $5 or greater to the Project during the campaign’s quiet launch.
For more information, contact: Eric Brown, Assistant Director of Annual Giving, firstname.lastname@example.org, 412-268-5933.
Who are the students or organizations associated with the projects on the CMU Crowdfunding site?
The persons/entities that are associated with the projects on the CMU Crowdfunding site are Carnegie Mellon students, faculty, staff or alumni and/or organizations seeking support for educational and similar projects.
How are projects selected?
Projects are selected by the CMU Project Review Committee, which reviews every application for funding submitted. Among other criteria used for selection, to be eligible for funding, the proposed project must fulfill an educational or similar non-profit purpose at CMU. Persons/entities interested in having projects funded must submit an application identifying the funding, the educational-related or similar non-profit purpose and the proposed use of funding.
Is my payment secure?
Yes. CyberSource is the technology used by CMU for processing payments. CyberSource is PCI Level 1-compliant.
When will my credit card be charged?
Your payment will be processed immediately when you finalize it through the site.
Who is considered the donor?
The credit card owner (i.e., the named account holder of the credit card) is considered the donor.
Is my payment tax deductible as a gift to CMU?
Your contribution is a charitable gift to CMU, designated for the project you have chosen to fund. You may be entitled to a charitable income tax deduction for your gift to CMU because CMU is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Please consult your tax advisor for advice regarding your specific tax situation.
Does my payment count towards my annual giving to CMU?
Yes. Since your payment is a charitable contribution to CMU, it will be considered your annual gift (or as part of your annual gift) to CMU. Your payment will also be counted toward your membership in CMU’s donor recognition societies, such as the Andrew Carnegie Society.
Is my payment eligible for a matching gift?
Yes. Because your payment is a charitable contribution (gift) to CMU, it will be eligible for matching gifts.
Who should I contact with questions about my payment?
All questions can be directed to email@example.com.
Are international payments accepted?
Yes. International payments can be made via credit card in U.S. dollars through the site.
What happens if a project is not fully funded or the funds raised for the project exceed the goal?
In general, if for any reason CMU determines that the use of the funds for the stated purpose should no longer be possible or appropriate, CMU may use the funds to support other projects or purposes that CMU believes closely align with the educational and/or charitable intentions of the project. Thus, if CMU determines that (i) the project cannot be performed in whole or in part because it is not fully funded, CMU may use the funds that cannot be used for the project to support other projects or purposes that CMU believes closely align with the educational and/or charitable intentions of the project, or (ii) the funds raised for the project exceed the financing needs of the project (which may occur if the goal is exceeded), CMU may apply the excess funds to support other projects or purposes that CMU believes closely align with the educational and/or charitable intentions of the project.
Is CMU responsible for ensuring that the funds are used as intended?
Yes. Except as noted in the bullet point immediately above, CMU is responsible for ensuring that the funds are used for the project.