Ease Student Challenges through the Emergency Fund

Ease Student Challenges through the Emergency Fund

The Student Emergency Fund provides much-needed, direct financial support to Berkeley undergraduate and graduate students who are experiencing unforeseen difficulties during this time. Many students are greatly impacted due to the loss of jobs and are struggling to find the necessary resources to cover their day to day expenses and academic endeavors.


To ensure the maximum number of students finish their Berkeley education, Kathy Kwan, B.S. ’87, M.B.A./M.P.H. ’93 has committed $1,000,000 to support student emergency financial aid. Kathy has challenged the Berkeley community to build upon her generosity by also making a gift.  We need to raise an additional $1,000,000 to meet that challenge and we're hoping you will contribute today to make a difference for our students.  

“How do we ensure that the maximum number of students finish their Berkeley education?” Kwan asked, emphasizing that the support our community provides today has significant implications for Berkeley’s long-term health. Our students are the lifeblood of our university, and we need your help to keep them on track to graduate and bring their talents to the world. 


"This is a scary time for everyone, but especially for kids who can’t get home or work jobs that once sustained them." 

— Sara Jane Harris, mother of Andy, class of 2022, on why she gave to the Student Emergency Fund 

The challenges brought about by this pandemic are affecting all of our students, especially our most vulnerable communities, including disabled students, student parents, first-generation students and low-income students.


Your gifts will be used to help students impacted by providing resources such as:

  • Relocating students
  • Housing expenses
  • Food
  • Essential items like household goods, clothing, and books
  • Technology solutions for remote learning

Join Kathy Kwan, Sara Jane Harris, and the many other alumni, parents, and friends of Berkeley in deepening the resources that we can and must provide for our students. With your support, their lives are changed for the better today, and our world is changed for the better tomorrow. 

If you are specifically interested in supporting our international graduate students whose situation has changed dramatically due to the COVID-19 crisis you can make a gift here


Looking to learn more?

For questions about this resource for students, contact studentexperience@berkeley.edu.


For more information on Berkeley's response to COVID-19, which includes campus community updates, visit https://news.berkeley.edu/coronavirus/.


For the latest research efforts emerging from Berkeley regarding COVID-19, vist https://innovativegenomics.org/.



Top Image: Armando Cortes, the campus’s PPE coordinator, accepted masks donated from a Cal parent in Pinole, California.

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