Student sells adspace on graduation cap to pay off student debt

Campus Reform Reporter

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  • Student is selling one inch by one inch adspace on graduation cap for $300
  • Alex Benda, the student selling the ad-space, told Campus Reform he came up with idea over Christmas break
  • Lower level donors can receive a five minute phone call, handwritten thank you, or a badly drawn sketch
  • “I’ve got this debt, it’s—trust me, it’s a very sobering thing to come to realization with when everyone all your life tells you to go to college and you’ll be all set, and now I’m on the cusp of graduation and what’s there for me?”   

    A student at the University of Michigan-Flint is selling advertising space on top of his graduation cap in order to pay off his student loans.

    Alex Benda, a 22-year old majoring in international business, is auctioning off 100 one inch by one inch advertising spaces on top of his hat for $300 each.

    If Benda sells every single space, he will earn $30,000, enough money to pay off his student debt. Benda has put his campaign on gogetfunding.com and has earned $1,615, although only in donations.

    In the description, Benda describes graduating with debt as a “death sentence” and claims he aspires to be an entrepreneur.

    Benda claims “You can advertise on it, give a shout out, put a quote, a silly image of your cat, practically anything!,” but stipulated he would not accept advertising for anything “sexual, offensive, or crude.”

    In an exclusive phone interview yesterday with Campus Reform, Benda said he came up with the idea over Christmas break after being asked about his plans after graduation.

    ”So I had some time. . .and I thought, and said everyone is going to be looking at me as I walk across the stage and get my diploma,” said Benda.

    “I sat and bounced around ideas and, you know, one thing lead to another and I came to this idea and thought I’d give it a shot,” he added.

    Benda said he’s not sure about solutions to the student debt crisis, but mentioned the strain of having a college debt given the poor state of the job market for recent graduates.

    “I’ve got this debt, it’s—trust me, it’s a very sobering thing to come to realization with when everyone all your life tells you to go to college and you’ll be all set, and now I’m on the cusp of graduation and what’s there for me?”

    Donors who give twenty dollars get a thank-you letter “plus a badly drawn sketch of [their] choice,” and donors who give fifty dollars will receive thank-you on Benda's YouTube channel.”

    Donors who give a hundred dollars or more get all of the previous rewards along with a phone call from Benda on a “minimum 5 minute conversation on any topic.”

    Benda, the youngest of six children from a military family, was the first person to immediately attend college following graduation from high school instead of going into the armed forces.

    H/T: The Detroit Free Press

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @TimPDion