Reading, Pa. - Alvernia University launches a financial support program, the Presidential Hope Fund, to assist students and families struggling to fund continued education during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I am grateful for the swift action and adaptability of both our faculty and students, which has allowed learning to continue in a remote environment,” said Alvernia University President John R. Loyack. “We know that the impacts of COVID-19 go well beyond academic programming, and this time is difficult for everyone, but many of our Alvernia students and their families are suffering significant and unprecedented financial repercussions. In our Bernardine Franciscan tradition of serving those in need, we have created the Presidential Hope Fund to assist those students and their families.”
The fund includes amounts allocated to the University through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act as well as additional university funds, which totals over $3 million of resources available to help families in need. All CARES Act funding will go directly to students.
While the Hope Fund will be available to all students, initial plans for the fund include $2,450 in financial resources for residential students as well as account credits up to $2,000 for any graduating students.
“Our residential students and graduating students were near the top of the list of those who had their experiences most affected as repercussions of COVID-19,” said Loyack. “While all students and their families could potentially benefit from the Presidential Hope Fund, we wanted to ensure residential and graduating students received the first wave of financial resources as they continue their march toward graduation.”
Alvernia has also established a matching program for students and their families. Now through May 29, students can apply for a Hope Fund matching grant to receive a matching grant of up to $2 for every $1 paid on an open account.
Upon learning about the Presidential Hope Fund, the Class of 2020 announced their senior class gift would be a contribution to this fund to help support the needs of their peers.
“We do not want the Class of 2020 to be remembered as the class that couldn’t finish out our last year but rather as the class that conquered adversity, helped each other and stayed true to Alvernia’s mission during these challenging times,” said Katelyn Dougherty ’20. “The Presidential Hope Fund will allow us to leave behind a legacy for years to come by serving fellow students in need and embodying our Franciscan values in ways a physical object cannot.”
To request Hope Fund aid, students should visit Alvernia.edu/HopeFund.
For those wishing to join the Class of 2020 in contributing to the Presidential Hope Fund can do so by visiting this Alvernia giving page.