College Planning/Semester Abroad/School Trips

The following information has been tailored for Cavendish students who wish to pursue college or post secondary education,  those in college who wish to do a semester abroad and high school students who would like to take advantage of school trips and exchange programs.

COLLEGE PLANNING: Go to Paying for College-Never too Soon or Too late for information that is regularly updated. Be aware that Vermont high school students can be earning free college credits. Each of the Vermont State Colleges hosts a full-year alternative to the senior year in high school. Students take standard college courses to complete their senior year of high school and their freshman year of college simultaneously—tuition free. Vermont Technical College hosts the Vermont Academy of Science and Technology (VAST), for students who have a strong academic record and are interested in math science and technology. FMI: Pathways for High School Students. By using opportunities outlined, college is very much within reach of Cavendish students. However, it does require planning and forethought. 



School Sponsored Trip: School sponsored trips or exchange programs (such as going to France for several weeks) often hold group fundraisers, which can help reduce the overall cost. If you are organizing such fundraisers, consider activities such as sports tournaments (“five-a-side” soccer, Ping-Pong, dodge ball, basketball etc); 5k runs; bingo night; dinners; bottle drives; tag sale; pancake breakfasts; raffle; car wash; bake sales. Combining multi activities such as a car wash, bake and tag sale will yield better results than just one activity alone.

Study Abroad: If you are trying to raise money to pay for your semester abroad or an educational trip, consider the following:

• Lots of people are raising funds, so the more unique and creative your approach, as well as your fundraising objective, the easier it will be.

Some colleges and universities offer scholarships for studying abroad, so start by checking with your college’s study abroad department as well as  your major/minor departments and professors to see if they know of any concentration-specific study abroad scholarships. FMI: How to Find Study Abroad Scholarships

• Create a blog, website or other social media site so people can learn more about your plans and how they can be involved.

• Link to a Crowd Funding site that you have set up. While Go Fund Me was first out of the block, they take 8% of whatever you raise. Consider alternative sites that are similar but take less. Check out Top 5 GoFundMe Alternatives or 5 Best GoFundMe Alternatives from Crowd Crux

• Develop your fund raising campaign letter/materials that:

- outlines the reasons why you want to study abroad or participate in a trip etc.

- describes the trip/semester

- specify needs-e.g. airfare, program fees, passport fees etc.

- explains what you are doing to raise money, timeframe you need to do it by

- provide details on how they can help-send money to an acct, donate on-line, hold a fundraiser for you, donate frequent flyer miles, let others know of your campaign etc.

Include URL(s) website, blog and/or social media site so they can follow your progress.

A good fundraising letter can be modified slightly and be sent to not only friends, family, colleagues, social media sites, but also area businesses. Be friendly, upbeat and thank them in advance for whatever support they can provide.

• Use the Cavendish Business Directory to contact area businesses that might be willing to sponsor you. Area restaurants have been known to earmark profits from desserts or specific dishes to help a student raise money for a trip. They will expect you to “advertise” that they are doing this.

• If you belong to a church, ask if they would be willing to hold a special collection for you. Be prepared to talk about what you are planning on doing, provide a display board, handouts and offer to do a special program after your return.

• If you belong to a sorority, fraternity or campus organization, see if they would be willing to hold a fundraiser for you.

• Create some unique fund raising activities that are funny and people will respond to. Try a "goat insurance" fundraising event that people can't resist because they can't stop laughing. Flyers are mailed to your friends, family, colleagues or whomever announcing that you will be raffling off a donated goat-substitute any item, such as a trunk full of zucchini in August.  For $10, a person can send in the names of three people.  Letters are then sent to those three people, telling them they have a chance to win a goat (or whatever you choose).  But, for $10 they can buy "insurance" to protect themselves from being entered in the raffle. On the specified date, anyone who hasn’t paid insurance will be offered an opportunity to opt out of the “goat” by making a donation of $25. Check out some other ideas.

• Write a press release and send to local newspapers. Identify ways people can help you.

• Become the “Honey Do” person where you will do odd jobs, run errands, babysit, shovel snow, do yard work, cook, clean or whatever else is needed.

• Cavendish’s town wide tag sale -the last Saturday of July-is the place to set up a table on one of the village greens (register by e-mailing and sell gently used items, things you’ve made, including baked goods, and even consider having a mini raffle.

• In lieu of holiday and birthday gifts, request financial support for your trip.

• If you can make a craft item, such as jewelry, set up an Esty site or sell it off of your website.