Crowdfunding helps propel submarine to the US

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Members of the University’s Human Powered Submarine Society took to crowdfunding to help fund the cost of getting them to the 14th International Submarine Races held at the Carderock Naval Base, near Washington DC, USA.

The team, a group of mixed engineering students who designed and built a submarine powered entirely by human propulsion, aimed to raise a total of £10,000. The Office of Development and Alumni Relations helped the group further, offering funds up to £5,000 matched by the alumni community through the Fund for the Greatest Need.

After a month-long campaign across the group’s social media channels and connections, they were successful in raising a total of £9,872 from 32 generous donors. The funds helped the team to ship the submarine to the US, funded hire diving equipment, covered the cost of testing the submarine at a local dive centre and paid for some of the travel costs to get to the competition that took place between 25 to 30 June. The team achieved the 11th fastest team time of the competition and were incredibly proud of their achievements in building and racing the submarine.

Speaking to Southampton Connects, Charles Drummond, a current student and member of the society, said: “The crowdfunding experience was great. This annual project has a large impact on all involved; it allows students to work in a large multi-skill-based team with a significant budget. This helps to provide a stepping-stone from university to the project management skills required later in our careers.

“The society develops the skills of all its members, with the whole design, build, testing and competing, all carried out by the students in the society. Multiple companies attend the competition; links developed there help the society to increase the employability of all our members.

“We also aim to improve student wellbeing while at the University, by encouraging a social aspect with many new friendships and connections made, along with the opportunity to travel to America in order to compete in a large scale competition.”

Through the University of Southampton crowdfunding platform, 31 successful projects have received £105,000. From music concerts to space photography, crowdfunding is there to support your vision whatever it may be; the only requirement is that it positively impacts students at the University.

Find out about current projects requiring funding or apply to fund your own project on our crowdfunding site here.

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