There isn’t a single student at Lafayette untouched by the educational, emotional, or financial challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which upended the spring semester. But there was, and still is, a subset of students who are bearing the burden of all three—those experiencing financial challenges on top of the myriad other impacts the virus has caused on their educational experience and in their personal lives.
In early March, the serious needs of some students began to surface: a plane ticket home, personal care items
and school supplies, technology, etc. As the situation unfolded, some students were faced with the realization that they could not return home due to travel restrictions. As the country sheltered in place, so did approximately 200 students on Lafayette’s campus. With work-study programs canceled and other forms of employment suspended, some students needed help.
Fortunately, many were able to receive support from two College emergency funds established to address situations such as the financial hardship caused by COVID-19. The James F. and Donna L. Krivoski Student Assistance Endowment Fund and Lafayette Student Emergency Fund provided the much-needed financial support for students with urgent needs. Since early March, more than 300 alumni, parents, and friends have collectively contributed more than $20,000 to the funds.
“We worked around the clock to help students navigate the travel challenges,” explains Rev. Alex Hendrickson, College chaplain. “One student in particular was able to secure one of the last flights back to his country of origin.”