Emergency Grant Fund

This need-based grant is intended to provide one-time relief for a specific student financial hardship or emergency. Some examples of items that students may need include: transportation home in an emergency, the cost of a uniform for a new job, unexpected medical cost, an immediate need for personal, technological or academic items. To date, over 125 students applied for and received aid during the COVID-19 crisis thanks to generous supporters like you. We know times are tough for everyone, and your gift of any amount is greatly appreciated.

Emergency Grant Funds

While the College’s commitment to low-income and first generation students finds its most significant expression in our financial aid policies and resources, there are often needs that are experienced in the regular flow of a student’s life which fall outside the parameters of overall financial aid packages.  The Emergency Grant Fund aims to assist in filling those gaps. The fund assists in covering incidental and unanticipated expenditures, both academic and non-academic in nature that are not covered in a student’s financial aid award. Currently, these funds are limited to full-time day students who are currently enrolled at the College.  Students on leaves from the College or who are otherwise not enrolled are not permitted to receive funding from these sources.

Student Experiential Learning and Social Experiences Fund

Following the principle that every student should not merely graduate from Muhlenberg College but should thrive and be able to experience the fullness of the opportunities the College has to offer, The Student Experience Fund aims to make more accessible the extensive financial, educational and social resources available on our campus.  

Where does the funding for these opportunities come from?

These grant opportunities are available as a result of a true collaborative community effort across many departments at the College and beyond. A variety of campus offices and programs contribute to fund this program including the President’s Office, the Dean of Students Office, Multicultural Life, Academic Life. In addition, Institutional Advancement raises funds for these grants through the generous support of alumni, family and friends.These funds do not have to be repaid, however the College hopes that one day when a beneficiary of this support is in a position to pay this forward, they will do so.

How is the funding awarded?

Funding is awarded on a case by case basis, and factors that are considered include the student’s financial need, the nature of the funding request, and the availability of funding at the time the request is made. Funding may be approved either in full or in part. Emergency grants are typically for $500 or less. Student Experience Grants are available to students once per semester, with a cap of $1500 on any one experience.  Please note that we may not be able to fulfill all requests.

Process for applying:

The Dean of Students office receives and responds to financial requests on a weekly basis. Decisions on funding are made by committee and in consultation with the Financial Aid Office. For more pressing emergencies, students should contact one of the following individuals immediately: 

  • Allison Williams, VP for Campus Life and Dean of Students
  • Janelle Neubauer, College Chaplain
  • Robin Riley-Casey, Director of Multicultural Life
  • Michele Paules, Director of Student Support 
  • Kate Shelley, Associate Director of Housing and Residence Life
  • Michele Deegan, Dean of Academic Life
  • Greg Mitton, Director of Financial Aid*

*These individuals make up the committee charged with overseeing the grant awards for these two funds.

Factors taken into account by the committee when considering awards:

  • Whether a student receives financial aid, receives federal work-study and/or is employed on or off campus (most funds are designated primarily to be awarded to students who have significant demonstrated financial need through the financial aid process of the college); 
  • Whether a student has previously received support from these funds and for what amount;
  • Extenuating or specific individual circumstances;
  • With regard to the Student Experienes, how students will be able to contribute to our community as a result of participating in the experience.

Important Notes: 

*Each year, demand exceeds the available funding, and in most cases these monies will not cover the entire cost of an event or emergency;

*Particularly as it relates to funding student experiences, students are expected to contribute to the extent possible to their own experiences;

*These funds are not a replacement for financial aid, and are intended to cover incidental and unexpected expenses of modest amounts or one-time costs that may make an experience offered through the college cost-prohibitive;

*Requesting and/or receiving emergency funds will not affect a student’s annual financial aid award.

The following is a list of some types of assistance students have requested in the past from each fund. Requests for assistance are not limited to those on this list:

Emergency Grants:

  • Travel (includes emergency travel home by bus, train, car and air; travel to urgent medical appointments, etc.);
    • For domestic students living outside of the tri-state region, travel home is considered part of a student’s financial aid budget. The amount added to the student’s budget is estimated to cover three round trips during the course of the year. The Emergency Travel Fund is intended to help aided students who have emergency travel needs above and beyond the allowance already included in determining their financial aid award. 

  • Urgent medical or dental expenses not covered by insurance (eye exams/eyeglass replacement, hearing aids, etc.);
  • Theatre, art or other specific class-related supplies;
  • Clothing, hygiene, groceries, uniforms for College employment and other personal necessities;
  • Technological needs

Expenses covered by Student Experiences grants:

  • Transportation to and from job or internship interviews; travel as part of a student organization;
  • Student activities that require a fee to participate
  • Equipment to participate in a student activity or athletic team
  • Test prep courses (GREs, LSAT, MCAT)
  • Certain language lessons
  • Costs associated with conference travel and participation
  • Dues for any College-sponsored club/organization/fraternity/sorority/honor society
  • Costs associated with participating in or traveling to field trips, social excursions or other events (concerts, comedians, theatre, movies, etc.) sponsored by the College
  • Limited funds for MILA and other academic experiences

Expenses Not Covered by the Emergency Fund or Student Experience Fund:

  • Tuition, fees or study abroad costs
  • Non-essential personal bills such as: credit card bills, cell phone bills, etc.
  • Parking tickets, library fines, or similarly preventable expenses. *If you receive a fine through the College that you are not able to afford, you should contact the Office of Student Conduct and they will assist you in determining the best way to resolve this expense.
  • Expenses associated with organizations, events, or activities that are not sponsored by the College and/or do not have a direct connection to a student’s college experience or career preparedness.
  • Textbooks (please contact Financial Aid)

Accessing Funds:

Once notified, students will work with staff from the Dean of Students’ Office to ascertain the quickest and easiest way to meet the approved financial request.