University of Southern California

Research

Ignite 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 Ignite USC?

Ignite USC is an online fundraising tool that allows USC faculty, staff and students to create and share fundraising campaigns with an engaged community.

How does Ignite USC work?

USC faculty, staff, and students create 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 contribute to the project financially and are encouraged to share the project with their own community and social network to encourage more funding.

Who can start a project on Ignite?

Faculty, staff and students of USC.

What kinds of projects are accepted?

Projects must be affiliated with USC and have a direct impact on the university, academic priorities, capital projects, research, student life or university community partners.

How do I apply?

Fill out the submission form HERE.

How do I get a Gift Account Number?

Please contact your home department business manager about how to obtain a gift account number.

Who oversees Ignite USC?

The USC Provost’s Office manages Ignite USC.

Is there a cost for using Ignite?

There is no cost for USC users of Ignite. However, funds received may be subject to the normal university overhead on gifts.

When will I find out if my project was selected?

Once the form has been fully completed and submitted, your project will be approved or declined within 1 week.

How long does it usually take for a project to get funded?

This depends on your fundraising timeline, but most projects take about 3 months from the crowd priming phase to the final tally.

May I utilize another crowd funding platform?

Scalefunder is the only USC approved crowd funding platform. Please consult University Advancement before using other sites, which typically charge a fee and do not provide full gift support.

Who do I contact with questions about my Ignite project?

Please contact Iyoni Rice, Director of University Annual Giving, at irice@usc.edu or (213) 740-7503.

External Resource

Best Practice Guide for Fundraisers