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IIE commits $1m to COVID-19 fund, aims to double it

The Institute of International Education has committed $1 million to aid international students in the US caught in the crossfire of the coronavirus pandemic, and is seeking to raise an additional $1m to double the number of students it can aid.

IIE has allocated $1 million to cover approximately 300 emergency grants

In what is described as its “most expansive Emergency Student Fund ever” the IIE has launched the IIE Emergency Student Fund: COVID-19 Response to support international students currently studying at IIENetwork Institutions in the US.

“The necessary but abrupt campus closures are devastating for many international students”

An IIE statement explained that to halt the spread of the coronavirus, universities around the US have shuttered residence halls and moved courses online.

“The necessary but abrupt campus closures are devastating for many international students,” it noted. “Some are unable to go home to be with their families—border closures and cancelled flights make it impossible.

“Others made the difficult decision to remain in the US anticipating they might not be able to return when their university reopens.”

As a result, the statement continued, international students are stranded in the US, unable to meet basic living expenses.

“Their employment options are limited by law, and their eligibility for financial aid is even more limited. Their families may be unable to provide funds the students have been counting on. Some students may have fallen ill and need support while they recover,” the statement explained.

To help meet the immediate needs of international students, IIE said it has allocated $1 million to cover approximately 300 emergency grants, and aims “to raise another $1 million and double the number of students we can aid”.

International students in the US can turn to IIE for help by asking their on-campus advisors to nominate them for IIE’s emergency grant assistance.

The ESF: COVID-19 Response will provide grants of $2,500 to selected students who demonstrate a high financial need to cover their living expenses through summer 2020.

“100% of gifts to this fund will be used to assist international students impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” added IIE.

For more details about the IIE Emergency Student Fund: COVID-19 Response, visit the program website.

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