General FAQs

What is Crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is the practice of sourcing small contributions from a large number of people to provide funding for a particular project or campaign, usually via the Internet.

What is CU Boulder Crowdfunding?

CU Boulder Crowdfunding is an online fundraising tool created by the University of Colorado Boulder that allows individuals and organizations to create and share fundraising campaigns with an engaged community. The CU-Boulder Crowdfunding platform can empower the entire CU community to come together and create lasting impact on projects they may be interested in or care about. 

How does CU Boulder Crowdfunding work?

Selected CU Boulder students, faculty, and staff have created separate fundraising campaigns for a particular project with a specific funding goal and project completion timeline. In some cases, a particular project may offer an intangible (non-monetary value) reward in exchange for support. Supporters can contribute to the project financially and are encouraged to share the project with their own community and social network.

Who can contribute to CU Boulder Crowdfunding?

Anyone! Contributions to projects can be made by any individual or organization inside or outside of the CU community. 

Project Team and Campaign Creator FAQs

Who can start a project on CU Boulder Crowdfunding?

All CU Boulder students, faculty, and staff can apply to create and launch a campaign on the CU Boulder Crowdfunding platform.  The application can be found here.  

How does a project receive its funding?

The project teams work with the sponsoring department's budget coordinator to access money raised through a separate university spending account set up specifically for their project at the onset of the campaign.

If I have a project idea but am not sure if I should apply, what should I do?

Contact Mia Fill (mia.fill@colorado.edu), the Crowdfunding Program Coordinator, to talk through your idea(s) and campaign options.  

CU Boulder Crowdfunding Contributor/Funder FAQs

How do I contribute to a project on the CU Boulder Crowdfunding site?

Find the project page for the project that you would like to contribute to and click "support this project." You will be asked for a contribution amount and credit card information. You can also contribute by telling your friends and family about a project that you are interested in, or by spreading the word across your social networks. 

What methods of payment does CU Boulder Crowdfunding accept?

CU Boulder Crowdfunding accepts credit card payments (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover).  To donate via mailed check, please locate detailed instructions at the bottom of the campaign page of the project you wish to help fund.

Is there a minimum or maximum amount I can contribute?

Yes, there is a $1 minimum contribution amount required. There is no maximum amount and you can also make multiple contributions to multiple projects. 

If I contribute to a project, when is my credit card charged?

Immediately upon making the donation. 

Is my contribution tax deductible?

Yes, your contribution is a donation gift made to the CU Foundation and is tax deductible as allowed by law. You will receive a tax-deductible receipt for the entire amount of your donation. Funds contributed are then transferred from the CU Foundation to the University for use by the specified project.

Does CU Boulder Crowdfunding store my credit card payment information?

No, CU Boulder Crowdfunding does not store any payment or credit card information. 

Is my contribution amount publically displayed?

Unless you choose to give anonymously, your name will be displayed as part of the campaign's community of supporters.  However, your contribution amount will not be publically displayed.  

Can I request to make an anonymous contribution?

Yes, you will be able to indicate when making your contribution payment that you would like to remain anonymous. 

When will a project receive funds?

Projects will receive their funds once their campaign has ended (typical 30-45 days from the launch date of the campaign).

Can I share that I contributed to a project through my social media accounts?

Yes, please do!  You can share the campaign directly using the "Share This Campaign" feature at the top of the campaign page.  There is also a button on the CU Boulder Crowdfunding site thank you page that you will see after a contribution is given that will allow donors to share their contribution with their own social networks. 

What rewards if any can I receive for my contribution?

Currently, CU Boulder Crowdfunding is only allowing for non-tangible rewards to be given and only from certain selected projects. These non-tangible rewards are defined as rewards that don't have any monetary value except for the costs of the materials such as cards, blank CDs, poster boards, paper, etc.  Rewards offered vary for each project.

Can I get a refund for a contribution I have made?

Yes, a refund request will need to be made directly to the Processing Department in the Office of Advancement (not the Foundation) at (303) 541-1290 or via email at advancement.processing@cu.edu.

How do I know what percentage of the money goes to the project?

100% of the funds raised will be used by the project to which you have contributed for the project tasks and related expenses.  Each project has a detailed budget breakdown and a section on “use of funds” in their project description pages on the CU Boulder Crowdfunding website. 

How do contributors know that their contributions will be used for the project that they gave to?

100% of your contribution will go only to the project (or projects) you have designated. Each project has a separate account set-up by University accounting which will be monitored by an assigned university staff and/or faculty sponsor for each project. 

How will I know if and when the project reaches its funding goal?

You can always check back on the project page to look at the funding progress. You can also sign up for updates or follow the project's social media pages for updates. You will receive an e-mail when the project fundraising time has expired regardless of the success of the project.

What happens if a project exceeds its specified funding goal?

Each of the project teams has identified a set of baseline project tasks and goals in addition to a set of “stretch goals”. Should a project be fortunate enough to exceed its funding goal, the additional funds will be utilized to help the team reach the project stretch goals as identified in their project description pages on the CU Boulder Crowdfunding website.  Designation of unspent funds is listed on each campaign page as well.

Are contributions returned if project does not reach its stated funding goal?

No, we believe that projects should be able to keep the funds that are raised even if the total funding goal may not have been reached. We expect each of the project teams will make some progress in achieving their project goals even if they may not have been fully funded.

Can I ask questions about projects?

Absolutely! You can submit questions and feedback through the CU Boulder Crowdfunding website using the "Contact" or "Feedback" forms.  

Can I sign up for e-mail alerts to receive project updates?

Supporters who have contributed to a project will receive e-mails whenever the project creator creates an update and when the project funding period ends.