I imagine there are many young adults who are nervous about food and housing. U of M students are incredible, hard-working people who deserve stability in this time of uncertainty.​

Madeline G., St. Paul, Minnesota, donor to the Student Emergency Fund

'So close'

Psychology major Neftali Neri was a month away from graduation when COVID-19 derailed her plans. Learn how an $800 emergency grant helped her fulfill her educational dream.

Lifeline in a time of crisis

When COVID-19 brought uncertainty and financial challenges to students across the U of M system, donors and University staff stepped up in a big way. President Joan Gabel announced a Student Emergency Fund to help with essentials like food and rent. The Office of Undergraduate Education on the Twin Cities campus coordinated an effort to make this funding more accessible. And donors showed extraordinary generosity.


The Student Emergency Fund helps students from all University campuses with essentials like food, rent, technology, unexpected travel and moving expenses, and lost income when jobs disappear in today's economic reality.


Thanks to your support, students feel surrounded by a caring community who won’t let them down—or as one student put it, a "virtual hug."

  • Woman in graduation cap holding diploma
    When her U of M classes went online, Lexi Carstensen used the extra time to line up a full-time job in Chicago.
  • Woman posing in graduation cap and gown with Goldy statue and Goldy mascot
    An emergency grant helped first-generation college student Cassidy Drummond pay rent when her work hours were cut.
  • Person working at laptop
    Computer engineering major Kia Vang describes the emergency grant she received as a "virtual hug" from donors.
  • Woman hiking in snowy mountains
    Moving across the country back to her parents' house meant extra expenses for biomedical engineering major Jenae Putnam.

Give to the Student Emergency Fund to help students in need


How your gifts make a difference

As of March 8, 2021


Students assisted by this fund and other college and department emergency funds


Average amount of an emergency grant

Grants help students pay for food, rent, technology (such as Internet service), and medical expenses


Number of donors who together gave $215,429 to the Student Emergency Fund (a total of $959,485 was directed to students from all emergency funds)