Kitchener-Waterloo

Emergency support fund set up for students at University of Waterloo

The University of Waterloo has launched an emergency support fund for students who are facing financial challenges because of COVID-19.

Fund for students 'experiencing financial challenges as a result of the pandemic,' school says

Students at the University of Waterloo will be able to apply to an emergency fund in the coming weeks to help them pay for unexpected costs because of COVID-19. (Kate Bueckert/CBC)

The University of Waterloo has launched an emergency support fund to help students with unexpected expenses due to COVID-19.

University officials said the fund is for all students, "whether they are full-time, part-time, undergraduate, graduate, domestic or international — who are experiencing financial challenges as a result of the pandemic."

For example, a co-op student who doesn't know how they'll pay rent after their work placement was cancelled due to the pandemic could apply to access funds.

How the fund will work exactly is still being worked out, the university said, but students will be able to start applying soon.

Waterloo president and vice-chancellor Feridun Hamdullahpur said the school is concerned about the safety and wellbeing of students.

"This new normal of physical distancing means some of our students are facing financial challenges. These students need our collective support during this difficult time," Hamdullahpur said in the release.

People can also donate to the fund through the university's website.

The idea for a support fund was first pitched by the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association on March 24. The WUSA said its internal funding committee was working out how it would work and hoped it would be "a joint project" with the university.

"We are hopeful that the university and our passionate alumni will join us to help provide financial support to UWaterloo students at this unprecedented time," the WUSA release said.

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