When she was a sophomore in high school, Quinn Driggs participated in a service trip to Tijuana, Mexico.
“Even though I had traveled and lived in South America and seen poverty, working closely with a specific family impacted me more,” Quinn says.
Serving in Tijuana got Quinn thinking. What could she do to help others and make a positive difference in more lives?
Passion for non-profit work
When Quinn returned home to Idaho Falls, Idaho, she realized she had a new passion. She wanted to help others through non-profit work.
“I realized serving made me feel happiness, and I wanted to do more of it,” Quinn says.
She began working on a campaign with a mentor who owned an app called Time Machine. The app encouraged people to take meaningful actions by rewarding users for those actions. After her internship ended, Quinn realized that this was a way for her to follow her dream of starting a charity.
Quinn founded To Change a Life, an organization aimed at helping teens get involved in their communities. Not only are teens encouraged to participate in community projects, but they also learn about helping impoverished families in communities around the world.
Teens can receive points by taking simple actions and sharing them on social media. The actions include service projects, educational efforts, and other community-building items.
“I saw the potential of the Time Machine app to help raise awareness and get more people my age involved in service work,” Quinn explains. “So I asked my mentor if I could buy the app.”
Raising $20,000 to follow her dream
The cost to purchase the app for her non-profit was $20,000. Raising that kind of cash can be a daunting task for anyone, but Quinn — a junior in high school at this time — decided to go for it.
First, her mentor put her in touch with Operation Kids, a non-profit located in Salt Lake City, Utah. After learning about her mission and her plans for the app, the organization provided her with a $10,000 grant. Quinn was already halfway there.
Next, Quinn decided to visit local businesses to encourage them to sponsor her app. Part of the app’s design is to recognize sponsors with social media mentions. She found a business in Idaho Falls willing to provide $2,000 for a sponsorship.
Her last move was to talk to friends and family for help raising the remaining $8,000. She sold an old car for $1,500 and collected donations from people she knew. She did all this without starting a GoFundMe campaign; instead, she talked about her vision and got others excited about her idea.
“In a lot of ways, I feel like I got lucky,” Quinn says. “I work hard, but I have people around me who are willing to support me. My mom especially — she always dreams big and encourages me to follow my dreams.”
Once she raised the money, Quinn bought the app and began working on her plan to get teens involved with community service.
What’s next for To Change a Life?
Quinn learned the hard way that launching a non-profit doesn’t always go as planned. There were technical difficulties with retooling the app for her purposes, and she launched later than expected.
Quinn also discovered that filling out paperwork to form a 501(c)(3) can be a headache. Instead of starting an independent non-profit, Quinn ended up working with Charity Anywhere, the organization that put together the trip to Tijuana.
To Change a Life is a branch of Charity Anywhere, but Quinn has autonomy in her finances and efforts. “Partnering with an existing charity just seemed to make more sense when I began looking into it,” Quinn explains.
“I hope to be able to break out with my own 501(c)(3) with the app later,” Quinn says. “Right now, though, I’m still busy with school and extracurriculars on top of doing this non-profit work.”
Today, Quinn is a high school senior. She’s run campaigns for the Humanitarian Center in Idaho Falls, and she’s about to start a campaign for Backyard Broadcast, a Utah charity that raises awareness to help victims of human trafficking.
Quinn has put together a plan to keep the app running by charging charities between two and five percent of what she raises for them. “Right now, everything I receive for running campaigns goes toward the cost of running the app and doing the non-profit work.”
She also has a lot on her plate as she gets ready to attend college. Quinn has applied to a number of schools, including Duke, Princeton, and BYU. She knows there are programs that emphasize non-profit marketing, and she hopes her education will tie in with her ambitions to take To Change a Life to the next level.
“There’s a lot I want to do with international charity, and maybe geopolitics,” Quinn says. “I’m excited to make it happen.”
What you can learn from Quinn
Sometimes, we get bogged down in life and don’t put much thought to our ambitions. Though Quinn wasn’t always sure where her journey would take her, she moved forward anyway and ended up raising $20,000. Now, she’s on a path to even bigger things.
Here are some lessons we can all learn from Quinn as we pursue our dreams:
Create a plan
Quinn mapped out a plan. There were times things didn’t go according to her vision, but she worked out which milestones she needed to hit.
While you might have to move some of your benchmarks, the important thing is to create a plan so you know where to go next. Plus, being able to see your progress can keep you motivated.
Don’t be afraid to get out there and meet people. Quinn found a mentor, presented at networking events, and made it a point to get to know people. Now she has dozens of contacts for future projects and potential fundraising.
Reach out to others and attend events to find like-minded people. You might be surprised at the connections you make, and how they could help you later.
Look for unconventional solutions
When Quinn realized it might not be practical to start her own 501(c)(3) right away, she didn’t give up. Instead, she found a creative workaround. By partnering with a different organization, she was able to be autonomous, but avoid some of the issues she isn’t ready to tackle.
Don’t forget about creative ways to raise money. Quinn sold a car for part of her funds, but there are plenty of other ways you can get the capital you need for your business, including crowdfunding and starting a side gig.
Be ready to work
Even though Quinn is in high school and has extracurricular activities, she’s made To Change a Life a priority. While she still makes time for her social life and school obligations, she also knows it’s important to work on her dream.
You might be surprised at how much time you have if you carve it out. The American Time Use Survey indicates that Americans spend almost three hours a day watching TV — imagine what could be accomplished if that time was spent on other projects.
Have a passion for non-profit work? Here’s how you can change the world with a non-profit career (and get your loans forgiven, too).
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 7 lenders of 2019!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.45% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.99% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 1.81% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.49% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of November 6, 2019, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 11/06/2019. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at email@example.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
2 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
3 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. Mortgage lending is not offered in Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association.
ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE (“APR”)
There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties associated with the loan. Lender may assess a late fee if any part of a payment is not received within 15 days of the payment due date. Any late fee assessed shall not exceed 5% of the late payment or $28, whichever is less. A borrower may be charged $20 for any payment (including a check or an electronic payment) that is returned unpaid due to non-sufficient funds (NSF) or a closed account.
For bachelor’s degrees and higher, up to 100% of outstanding private and federal student loans (minimum $5,000) are eligible for refinancing. If you are refinancing greater than $300,000 in student loan debt, Lender may refinance the loans into 2 or more new loans.
ELIGIBILITY & ELIGIBLE LOANS
Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).
Graduates may refinance any unsubsidized or subsidized Federal or private student loan that was used exclusively for qualified higher education expenses (as defined in 26 USC Section 221) at an accredited U.S. undergraduate or graduate school. Any federal loans refinanced with Lender are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment.
All loans must be in grace or repayment status and cannot be in default. Borrower must have graduated or be enrolled in good standing in the final term preceding graduation from an accredited Title IV U.S. school and must be employed, or have an eligible offer of employment. Parents looking to refinance loans taken out on behalf of a child should refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for applicable terms and conditions.
For Associates Degrees: Only associates degrees earned in one of the following are eligible for refinancing: Cardiovascular Technologist (CVT); Dental Hygiene; Diagnostic Medical Sonography; EMT/Paramedics; Nuclear Technician; Nursing; Occupational Therapy Assistant; Pharmacy Technician; Physical Therapy Assistant; Radiation Therapy; Radiologic/MRI Technologist; Respiratory Therapy; or Surgical Technologist. To refinance an Associates degree, a borrower must also either be currently enrolled and in the final term of an associate degree program at a Title IV eligible school with an offer of employment in the same field in which they will receive an eligible associate degree OR have graduated from a school that is Title IV eligible with an eligible associate and have been employed, for a minimum of 12 months, in the same field of study of the associate degree earned.
The interest rate you are offered will depend on your credit profile, income, and total debt payments as well as your choice of fixed or variable and choice of term. For applicants who are currently medical or dental residents, your rate offer may also vary depending on whether you have secured employment for after residency.
The repayment of any refinanced student loan will commence (1) immediately after disbursement by us, or (2) after any grace or in-school deferment period, existing prior to refinancing and/or consolidation with us, has expired.
POSTPONING OR REDUCING PAYMENTS
After loan disbursement, if a borrower documents a qualifying economic hardship, we may agree in our discretion to allow for full or partial forbearance of payments for one or more 3-month time periods (not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan), provided that we receive acceptable documentation (including updating documentation) of the nature and expected duration of the borrower’s economic hardship.
We may agree under certain circumstances to allow a borrower to make $100/month payments for a period of time immediately after loan disbursement if the borrower is employed full-time as an intern, resident, or similar postgraduate trainee at the time of loan disbursement. These payments may not be enough to cover all of the interest that accrues on the loan. Unpaid accrued interest will be added to your loan and monthly payments of principal and interest will begin when the post-graduate training program ends.
We may agree under certain circumstances to allow postponement (deferral) of monthly payments of principal and interest for a period of time immediately following loan disbursement (not to exceed 6 months after the borrower’s graduation with an eligible degree), if the borrower is an eligible student in the borrower’s final term at the time of loan disbursement or graduated less than 6 months before loan disbursement, and has accepted an offer of (or has already begun) full-time employment.
If Lender agrees (in its sole discretion) to postpone or reduce any monthly payment(s) for a period of time, interest on the loan will continue to accrue for each day principal is owed. Although the borrower might not be required to make payments during such a period, the borrower may continue to make payments during such a period. Making payments, or paying some of the interest, will reduce the total amount that will be required to be paid over the life of the loan. Interest not paid during any period when Lender has agreed to postpone or reduce any monthly payment will be added to the principal balance through capitalization (compounding) at the end of such a period, one month before the borrower is required to resume making regular monthly payments.
KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
This information is current as of November 8, 2019 and is subject to change.
4 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.
Splash Financial Disclosures
Terms and Conditions apply. Splash reserves the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. Rates and terms are also subject to change at any time without notice. Offers are subject to credit approval. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 1.9299999999999997% effective October 10, 2019.
6 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of 5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.
As of 11/07/2019 student loan refinancing rates range from 1.79% to 8.65% Variable APR with AutoPay and 3.49% to 7.75% Fixed APR with AutoPay.
7 Important Disclosures for College Ave.
College Ave Disclosures
College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.
1College Ave Refi Education loans are not currently available to residents of Maine.
2All rates shown include autopay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.
3$5,000 is the minimum requirement to refinance. The maximum loan amount is $300,000 for those with medical, dental, pharmacy or veterinary doctorate degrees, and $150,000 for all other undergraduate or graduate degrees.
4This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a refi borrower with a Full Principal & Interest Repayment and a 10-year repayment term, has a $40,000 loan and a 5.5% Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $434.11 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $52,092.61. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.
Information advertised valid as of 09/23/2019. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.
|1.81% – 6.49%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.81% – 5.98%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.99% – 6.65%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.43% – 7.60%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.02% – 7.09%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.79% – 8.65%6||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.74% – 6.24%7||Undergrad & Graduate|