Vice Provost’s Graduate Retention Fund

Currently unavailable - funds have been depleted.

The Office of Graduate Studies has established the Vice Provost’s Graduate Retention Fund to provide financial assistance to graduate students who have an immediate, unexpected expense that limits their ability to continue in their program of study. The unexpected expense can be the result of an emergency, an unplanned and non-discretionary expense, or a sudden and unexpected change in a recurring expense. Funding is limited so that awards are capped at no more than $1,400 per student.


Varies (up to $1,400)


Ongoing until funding is depleted

Guidelines and Eligibility

Students must be in good academic standing with the University. Students must meet minimum enrollment requirements:

  • Master’s students must enroll in at least 6 hours during the fall and/or spring semester.
  • Doctoral students must enroll in at least 1 hour during the fall and/or spring semester.

Students will receive only one award per unexpected expense. In rare circumstances where students suffer more than one emergency incident during their career at KU, they may be eligible for more than one award. Awards are distributed in the form of a scholarship that is applied directly toward a student’s KU bill and do not require repayment. It is the student’s responsibility to understand the tax implications of this additional support.

Examples of Unexpected Expenses

  • Medical bills due to an emergency
  • New, unanticipated expenses (e.g. the loss of housing and the need to secure new housing; the need to travel due to the death of an immediate family member) 
  • Expenses that are unexpectedly much higher than anticipated (e.g. a sudden increase in rent or other bills)
  • Replacement of belongings lost in a natural disaster
  • Safety-related needs (e.g. short-term emergency shelter)


The application requires that you provide a short description of your situation and how this funding will help you complete your degree. You will need to indicate how much total funding you require to cover your indicated expenses, up to $1,400 maximum, and provide a breakdown and dollar amount of each of your expenses.

Please also be prepared to upload any available documentation of your indicated expenses (such as official bills, paid invoices, service quotes, or screenshots of equipment costs). Documentation should provide as much detail as possible (e.g., your name, payment due date(s), specific items/costs associated with your request, etc.)

Applications are reviewed in all cases and awards may be tailored appropriately to address circumstances beyond the student's control.

Please note that while the time required to process award decisions will depend upon the number of applications received, the Office of Graduate Studies aims to notify all applicants within 2-3 weeks. If you have not received notification within 3 weeks of completing your application, please contact Graduate Studies at

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