Graduate Student Emergency Fund

The Office of Graduate Studies has established the Graduate Student Emergency Fund. This fund exists to provide financial assistance to students who have an immediate, unexpected expense due to circumstances beyond their control. The unexpected expense can be the result of an emergency or an unplanned, non-discretionary expense. The standard award amount is $500, though more funding may be available in extenuating circumstances.

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 one award per emergency. In rare circumstances where students suffer more than one emergency during their career at KU, they may be eligible for more than one award. However, available funds are usually insufficient to accommodate multiple awards for one student.
  • Awards are distributed in the form of a scholarship that is applied directly to a student's KU bill. This award does not require repayment. It is the student's responsibility to understand the tax implications of this additional support.

Examples of Emergency Expenses

  • Replacement of belongings lost in a fire or natural disaster
  • Safety-related needs (e.g., changing locks or short-term emergency shelter)
  • Medical bills due to an emergency
  • Expenses (including travel) due to the death of an immediate family member

Please be aware that the following expenses are not considered unexpected and thus, are typically not funded.

  • Computer replacement
  • Child care
  • Rent and utilities

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


Applications to this fund are accepted via the Emergency Aid Network.


If you would like to contribute to KU graduate students please follow this link to the KU Endowment website.


Donate to the Graduate Student Emergency Fund
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