Fund Your Internship Program with Kickstarter?

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Written by Sarah Mania

Crowdfunding platforms all serve the same purpose. They allow campaigners to find financial support for a variety of causes. Kickstarter is one of such platforms. Anyone with an idea and the need for financial support can start a campaign. But are there limitations to the campaigns that should be crowdfunded? Today, I answer that question in regards to something businesses may have trouble implementing: an internship program.

What is Kickstarter?

Before I explain my answer, I think we should discuss what, exactly, Kickstarter is, as well as what it stands for.

Kickstarter is a crowdfunding website. Hopefuls can create campaigns on the website and set a monetary goal. Should that goal be reached by a certain time, the campaigner gets the money. If the goal isn’t reached, however, the money pledged goes back to the donators.

Who campaigns on Kickstarter?

Lots of people campaign on Kickstarter! Some campaigners are people like you and me, who have an idea they think others would like. Other campaigners are already well known, like De La Soul and Marina Abramović. All campaigners have something in common: They are creating a project to share with others – which leads us to our next question.

Can I use Kickstarter to fund my internship program?

The simplest answer to the above question is no. You cannot use Kickstarter to fund your internship program.

But why can’t I use Kickstarter to fund my internship program?

According to their guidelines, Kickstarter allows projects which fall under the categories of art, design, dance, film and video, technology, journalism, and a few more. All the categories are creative categories. Kickstarter explicitly states that they “[do] not allow projects to fundraise for charity or offer financial incentives.”

Although not a charity, an internship program does, in a sense, offer financial incentives. If the internship program ends up paying interns, that is a financial incentive. But beyond that fact, an internship program generally does not fall under the scope of being a creative project. It is a business venture that does not create anything in the typical sense.

What else can I do?

If you don’t currently have the funds to start an internship program, you can still look for investors. You’ll just have to go about it in a more traditional way. Speak with people in your business community. Network. Ask colleagues if they know anyone who’s looking to invest. Or, wait until you raise the funds yourself.

You have options. Unfortunately, Kickstarter isn’t one of them.

Questions on how to get your internship program started? Go here or contact us to get started!