Washington University in St. Louis is starting two new pilot grants to ease the financial burden on lower-income students starting in the fall of 2019.
Under the new grant programs, the university will provide a one-time $500 grant to cover the cost of a computer, as well as a one-time $1,500 grant to help cover the cost of books, housing supplies and winter clothing.
Students whose annual family income is less than $75,000 or who are recipients of federal Pell Grants are eligible for the grants.
“At Washington University, we have made great strides recruiting and supporting lower-income students and creating a culture where everyone is welcomed,” Chancellor-elect Andrew D. Martin said.
“But there is more work to do. By removing everyday obstacles like the cost of a winter coat or computer software, we are easing that transition to college and putting our students on the path to success.”
The university has projected that the two grant programs will cost approximately $1 million annually. It has also decided to waive its $1,550 summer earnings expectation for low-income students, allowing more of those students to receive financial aid.
According to Ronné Patrick Turner, vice provost of admissions and financial aid, the new initiatives are aimed at helping students achieve a smooth start to their college careers.
“No Washington University student should be overwhelmed by the startup costs that come with college,” Turner said.