RaiseMe Some Money

An app to help students on the road to college


RaiseMe offers students scholarships going to colleges or universities.

Sabrina McGuire, Staff Writer

The preparation for college can be stressful. Not only do students have to figure out financial aid, living situations, classes and so much more, they have to decide what school to go to in the first place. Despite the counselors lending a helping hand to students in need of college prep help, some students need a little extra help when it comes to navigating college and the financial trouble with it.

RaiseMe is a helpful app that helps high school students discover new opportunities for college. Over 250 colleges and universities have joined RaiseMe, in order to help high school students earn scholarships for their achievements in high school. Achievements can range anywhere from grades and extracurricular activities, to college readiness and job experience. RaiseMe is simple and easy to navigate, most students can even begin their journey to earning scholarships today. 

Students follow colleges they are interested in and create a portfolio about themselves. “They [students] put in information about things they have done,” Counselor Susan Baker said. “It can be grades, it can be activities, it can be music, art, there’s a wide variety of different athletics, music, art.” As the achievements are added into their portfolios, the colleges they follow begin to offer them micro-scholarships. “Micro-scholarships are awarded, by micro I mean small. So, it might be $10 dollars, it might be $15, $20. So you can, as a student, theoretically, earn this money,” Baker said.

Micro-scholarships can range anywhere from earning money for getting an A in a course, to referring a friend. Students participating in an extracurricular activity can get a micro-scholarship, as well as students who have work experience. Many colleges offer tons of micro-scholarships for about everything.  

“If you go to a university or college that recognizes RaiseMe, then they will issue you that money as part of the scholarship program or financial aid assistance,” Baker said. “If you go to a school that doesn’t, I mean, it’s not like you’re out anything, you were doing these activities anyway, and therefore, it was there but not there.”

For example, Drake University offers a micro-scholarship of $350 for each A earned in any course, $650 of each AP, IB, Honors Advanced, College Level, Pre-AP pr Pre-IB course. Grand View University has a scholarship for college readiness, where you can earn up to a maximum of $2,000 for a campus visit to their university. Another Iowa college, Buena Vista University, offers a scholarship of $450 for each leadership position in a non-sport activity, with two hours a week of participation. 

RaiseMe also has important facts and information on most colleges and universities. When you click on a college, you’ll find the quick stats for that college. You can find the average annual cost of that college, admission rates, financial aid per year, popular majors and even students’ testimonials.

Even though the app does help many students with college, it doesn’t help everyone. “So, I know Drake has given me a lot of scholarships, but I want to go to Iowa State and they’re not on the app,” Karsten Theilen ’20 said. Despite the large amount of universities partnered with RaiseMe, there are a few colleges that have yet to offer scholarships through the app. Iowa State and Iowa are major colleges in Iowa that don’t have any scholarships available through RaiseMe. “Before I knew which school I wanted to go to, it was really helpful, and I kinda had that little insurance if I wanted to go to Drake. But, now it’s not as useful,” Theilen said. Now that she wants to go to Iowa State, the offers from other schools don’t benefit her, unless she decides to transfer. 

Despite not being offered a scholarship she was interested in, the app is still beneficial. “Yes [it is beneficial], especially if you don’t know where you’re going yet,” Theilen said. “Plus, it has helped be because, on applications for things, you have to fill out your work experience, and all the activities you are in. And I just think it helps you keep track.” 

If students end up going to a school that is with RaiseMe, the scholarships can help them through their college academic life. “We’ve had a few students who earned a couple thousand dollars and they’ve gone to other universities that has recognized it,” Baker said. “So, a couple thousand dollars is a nice sum of money that can help pay for books, and pay a little into the tuition and things like that.”

If a student chooses to attend a college that is partnered with RaiseMe, the money they earn acts like a normal college-scholarship would. It will be a discount to their tuition when they enroll. You first have to apply to a school and get accepted, before enrolling. But, in order to use the earnings from that college, you must follow a college before the earning deadline. The earning deadline is the day, as a senior, your earnings are locked into RaiseMe, and colleges can automatically submit all of the information they need. You can see the earning deadline in the college’s portfolio page your senior year. As well, when you are applying for colleges, make sure you reach the requirements for that certain university. Every school is different!

The idea of college and student debt can be scary to many high schoolers now, but with RaiseMe, the various worries of students today can be set at ease.