In 1987 Mike Hayes from Rochelle, Illinois, was a freshman at the University of Illinois. He wasn’t able to fund his tuition fee all by himself so he came up with a ground-breaking idea.
He wrote a letter to Bob Greene, a multi-successful columnist at the Chicago Tribune. Mike asked Bob for help. The columnist was so thrilled by the idea that he gave it ago. He asked all of his readers to send a penny to Mike – that’s right – he asked just a penny from millions of readers. Of course, many of the nearly 3 million Chicago Tribune readers didn’t send anything, but others donated dimes, nickels and quarters. Miss America 1983 herself sent a $25 bill. In the end Mike had gathered nearly 2.3 million pennies, which made it possible for him to fund his education.
Mike went on with his degree as a food scientist. He revealed the secret behind his successful plan – he didn’t ask for much, but he asked it from many people.