University of York launches coronavirus student fund

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All non-essential buildings at the university have closed due to the coronavirus crisis

A university has launched an emergency fund for students facing financial difficulties due to coronavirus.

The University of York will offer students up to £500 to help with housing, food, travel and technology costs associated with online learning.

All current students are eligible to apply for the funding, provided by alumni and other donors.

The funding will be released in rounds to ensure those most in need are able to receive help.

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Prof Charlie Jeffery (right) has asked the university community to work together "with a sense of care and compassion"

Prof Charlie Jeffery, vice-chancellor at the university, said: "The world faces an unprecedented challenge and we are doing all we can to help our students through this incredibly difficult time.

"We are able to react quickly to the crisis because of the support of our very many generous donors who also wish to help those students in greatest need at this time."

The university will monitor requests for emergency and "try our best to respond in a timely way".

If demand exceeds the funding available, priority will be given to care leavers and students with an experience of care, students who are estranged from family, students on medical, nursing or midwifery programmes, students with children, students with disabilities and long-term health conditions, students with refugee or asylum-seeker status and students who are carers.

In February, a University of York student was one of the first two confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK.

The university has since confirmed all teaching for the remainder of the academic year will be delivered online, with graduation postponed and the summer ball cancelled.

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