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Emergency Funding

Sometimes life happens. Unexpected medical bills arise, jobs are lost, housing plans fall apart, access to food is limited, cars break down or computers need repair. UNC seeks to support all students on their educational journeys, even in the midst of financial instability.

The Student Emergency Support Fund exists to provide financial support for UNC students who are experiencing unanticipated and/or catastrophic life events that may otherwise cause the student to stop or pause progress toward their educational goals. The Emergency Support Fund is made possible by the generosity of donors

The maximum award amount is generally $750. 

  • How do I know if I'm eligible for emergency funding?

    To be eligible to receive emergency support funds, you must meet the following criteria: 

    • Student is a graduate or undergraduate student who is either currently enrolled for classes at UNC or between semesters of class enrollment at UNC, with evidence of the student’s intention to re-enroll for the coming semester.
    • Student is experiencing a financial emergency, defined as a recent unforeseen financial shortfall that if, unaddressed, has the potential to result in housing or utility insecurity, food insecurity, inability to access health care, inability to care for dependents, inability to meet personal safety needs or inability to continue as a student at UNC.  (The committee awarding emergency support may require documentation of needs or expenses.) 
    • There is no evidence the student has other financial resources to meet the need at hand. For example, a student who recently received a significant financial aid refund might be reasonably expected to apply that refund toward a particular financial need. 
  • How do I apply for emergency funding?

    Students requesting emergency support funding must complete the online application. Documentation of expenses may be required, and in some cases, students may be required to meet with a staff member prior to funds disbursement.

    The Emergency Support Fund   is administered by a committee that meets weekly to review applications. If and when funds are exhausted, additional applications will not be reviewed. All decisions of the committee are final. Forms are reviewed most business days. During the academic year, it can take up to a week for initial decisions to be made on applications. If you need food, housing or other support more urgently, please contact sos@unco.edu or call 970-351-2796 during daytime working hours. After hours, contact UNC Police at 970-351-2245.   

    If you have questions, please contact us at sos@unco.edu 

  • What can the emergency funding be used for?

    Expenses that are eligible for emergency funding include, but are not limited to: 

    • Expenses related to medical, dental, or mental health emergencies for the student 
    • Emergency family medical or death expenses for those the student is financially responsible for  
    • Expenses for safety and health-related needs 
    • Housing expenses (rent or mortgage) 
    • Food expenses 
    • Utilities (e.g., electricity, gas, water, sewer, phone and internet bills) related to an emergency  
    • Unexpected dependent care expenses 
    • Transportation or commuting expenses related to an emergency 
    • Veterinary fees related to an emergency (note that the awarding of funds for this purpose may be subject to federal financial aid limitations)  
    • Costs related to major accidents or loss due to fire, theft or natural disaster  
    • Replacement of books, supplies and technology due to an emergency 
    • Expenses associated with the loss of a loved one 

    Expenses that are generally not eligible for emergency funding include, but are not limited to: 

    • Tuition and fees at other institutions of higher education  
    • Student travel or conferences  (bereavement travel is the exception)
    • Legal fees  
    • Non-essential utilities (e.g., streaming services)  
    • Costs of entertainment, recreation, personal or non-emergency travel expenses  
    • Outstanding personal debt, including credit card debt 

Academic Appeals

Although the Dean of Students Office is not directly involved with academic appeals, case managers know students often have questions about how to navigate the process

Information Sharing

Authorizing Release of Information

UNC students working with case managers in the Dean of Students Office have the opportunity to authorize the release of information to specified parties of their choosing. In some limited circumstances, including emergencies as described below, UNC may share students' information without a Release of Information on file. 

Emergency Contact

UNC students should regularly review and update their emergency contact information in Ursa. Emergency contact information is necessary to contact someone of your choice on your behalf in case of an emergency. UNC may use this information when students are personally involved in a health or safety emergency, such as emergency medical transports and/or hospitalizations.

Student Resources

If there is an emergency and you need immediate help, please call the UNC Police at 970-351-2245.

Frequent Referrals

You may find it helpful to reach out to one or more of the following resources for assistance during difficult times. If you’d like, our case managers are here to help you connect with these resources and to address any questions or concerns you may have throughout the process. Email dos@unco.edu to request a meeting with a case manager if you’re interested in additional support.

Campus Resources (PRINTABLE PDF)



Cassidy Hall, 2nd floor

Bear Central in the Campus Commons

Bear Central in the Campus Commons