By tkrauseHave you spent countless hours searching and applying for scholarships, but you just can’t seem to win any of them? Are your parents unable to help you out financially? Does the thought of taking out huge student loans make you sick to your stomach? If you’re ready to throw in the towel on financing a college education, don’t give up hope just yet! There’s actually another way to raise money for your degree that won’t leave you drowning in debt — it’s called crowdfunding. Recently, an art student at Temple University used a crowdfunding platform to raise $8,110 in just two weeks. How? He was smart and used his talents to encourage donors to help him pay for college. And, you can do it, too. Get creative, have fun, and cash in on your skills. But, before you can start your campaign, you’ll need to pick a crowdfunding website that will give you a good shot at successfully reaching your goal. Not sure where to start? We have a few suggestions. GoFundMe Courtesy of Wikipedia. Billed as the world’s number one personal fundraising website, gofundme.com has helped its users raise over $810 million for various causes. And, it’s a popular website for college students seeking help with tuition and student loan debt. There is a five-percent fee deducted per donation to help cover the company’s administrative costs and an additional three-percent fee charged for processing donations. Check out these success stories if you need some ideas! Indiegogo Life Courtesy of Indiegogo Life. Indiegogo Life is the personal fundraising arm of Indiegogo. And, best of all, it’s completely free for fundraisers. The only charge is a three-percent credit/debit card processing fee. The website is easy to use and gets more traffic than many of the other crowdfunding websites available. YouCaring Courtesy of YouCaring.com. To date, more than 127,000 people have used YouCaring.com to raise more than $198 million. Its services are free for fundraisers, and you have the option of selecting WePay or PayPal to process your donations, which is the only fee (typically less than three percent). Just for high school students If you’re currently in high school, there’s also another way to earn free money for college through a crowdfunding-type platform, and it’s actually pretty ingenious. Say hello to Raise.me. Unlike other crowdfunding websites that require you to start a campaign and wait for generous people to contribute, Raise.me actually puts the power of fundraising into your hands. How? As a student, you can earn money for things you are already doing, such as taking an AP course ($100-$1,250) or volunteering in your community ($7-$75 per hour). You can also earn money for perfect attendance, taking on leadership roles, or participating in sports. The list is practically endless! Simply apply to one of the colleges that supports the program (and get accepted) and your funds will be transferred to your student account when you enroll. Pretty cool, right? Have you ever tried a crowdfunding website? Let us know about your experience. We’d love to share your tips with others.