Spontaneous Scholarships 2015: How to give, how to apply

Yes, it’s the fifth year of this wonderful (and SAA-award winning) crowdfunding effort to help our fellow archivists and archives students attend the Society of American Archivists annual meeting. In the past four years you’ve helped 149 people–86 of them students–and I know how grateful all of them were for your donations.

The rules are the same as in previous years, but look for a follow-up post about how your donation can give you a chance to win a fabulous dining room suite a fabulous new archives-related book!

What is this about?

We’re giving money to people to fund their registration for the SAA Annual Meeting in Cleveland. Rather than pay for full travel or lodging for just a few people, I try to give a little bit of help to as many people as possible. This effort has no formal affiliation with SAA. Your donations are not tax deductible. It’s simple. You send me money. I give it all away within a few weeks to colleagues who need it.  Over the past four years, you’ve given over $30,000 and helped almost 150 fellow archivists and future archivists. It’s simple, but it works.

How you can help

If you want to give, you have several options, outlined below. My preference is for checks because that means PayPal transaction fees aren’t deducted from your donation, but I know it’s easier to click and donate while you’re thinking of it, so by all means, click and donate if that’s easier for you. Here are your options:

  • Pay by check– email me (info [@] archivesnext.com or my regular email if you have it) or leave a comment (for which you must supply an email). I will reply with a mailing address. Or if you are an SAA, MARAC, or MAC member, you can look up my address in their member directories.
  • Pay via PayPal–click on the “Donate” button at top right of the sidebar.
  • Pay via credit card–send me an email, and I’ll send you an invoice using PayPal.

Give as much as you feel you can. Every little bit helps. Don’t feel like whatever you can afford to give isn’t enough. But if you’re fortunate enough to be in a comfortable position, please give generously.

Special early-bird incentive: A generous donor will give an additional $5 for every donation received or post-marked during the first week of the campaign. So act no later than June 9 and your donation can have an extra benefit!

This year, people making donations of $20 or more can enter a raffle to win a new copy of a archives-related book. See follow-up post for details.

How to put your name in the hat for scholarship

If you need help funding your SAA Annual Meeting registration, please send a message to info [@] archivesnext.com providing your name, and whether you will be registering for the conference as a student or regular SAA member (note, you must be an SAA member to be eligible). All requests must be received by midnight on Tuesday, June 30. I will draw names out of a hat and notify the lucky people no later than Monday, July 6. This will allow you to register by the early-bird deadline of July 15. Once you forward me the confirmation of your registration, I will send you a reimbursement via check or PayPal.

So, all you need to do to apply is email me with the information listed above.That’s it. It’s on the honor system. Don’t ask unless you need, but if you need, go ahead and ask. This isn’t just for students and new archivists, it’s for everybody who needs a little help.

EDIT: Sorry, I thought I’d included this but it got dropped when I was revising the post. If you have received a scholarship in the past you are not eligible to receive another one. We want to spread the opportunities around. 

Which is why I’m asking you now to give, if you can. And why I’ll keep asking until July 1. Please share this through your own networks, as I will do shamelessly. And if you need some help, throw your name into the virtual hat!


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