By Larry Gordon
An unusual effort by the UC system to raise scholarship money through online crowd-funding tactics — including promises by faculty and students to lead hikes, wash cars and wear kooky costumes — has garnered $1.3 million, officials said Wednesday.
The formal part of the six-week Promise for Education campaign ended Oct. 31, and about 4,000 people donated to it via social media.
“We are really pleased. In addition to the amount of money raised, just seeing the visibility for scholarships was important,” said Jason Simon, UC’s executive director of marketing communications.
When it was announced publicly in September, about $900,000 already had been given or pledged in mainly traditional ways: large donations from businesses and UC regents, along with $400,000 from the estate of a New York state history teacher, Abraham Trop, whose three children attended UC.
The next $400,000 came from gifts averaging $75 each, responding to nearly 1,030 promises to do often light-hearted activities if a donation goal was met, Simon said.
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