Graphic by Krystal Zhang
Students in need of help during an urgent situation can now approach the Student Emergency Fund (SEF), a resource created to help students who are in need of financial or emotional assistance during a time of hardship.
The SEF was first brought into existence when the Student Care Team, Student Affairs Office and The Pepperdine Fund realized the need for a tangible fund to help students in an unforeseeable financial crisis, said Angela Kappus, Pepperdine Fund’s Seaver Class giving officer. Some of these circumstances include travel costs when a family member dies, medical bills, rent money or anything that could hinder their academic studies.
“The fund was created to help students still succeed in times of need and feel the love of the Pepperdine community,” Kappus said. She is one of the founders of the Student Emergency Fund.
To qualify to receive funding from the SEF one must be recommended by a mentor, professor, or close friend, Kappus said. The Student Care Team will then asses the case and pull from the bucket of available funds. Everything is completely confidential.
Seaver College alumna Claire Sledge (2017), benefitted from the program directly, according to the Give2Seaver website.
“I am so grateful for the help I received through the Student Emergency Fund when I broke my neck in a car accident last year,” Sledge said in a statement on the website. “I was unable to work for months, and the financial assistance allowed me to buy groceries, which I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to afford. I was under enormous stress, and this assistance made a significant difference in my life.”
The main source of donations come from alumni, faculty and students.
“Students coming up to give is the biggest impact I see,” Kappus said. “The students feel led to give because they are so thankful to be apart of this community and want their peers to feel the same. It is a worthy cause, and really accomplishes George Pepperdine’s Mission: Freely ye received, freely give.”
Student Government Association President Austin Welch said he sees a great need for the Student Emergency Fund.
“I’ve had friends and peers personally affected by the Student Emergency Fund,” Welch said. “We do not want someone to fail academically because of a tragedy. The Student Emergency Fund ensures that Pepperdine support is fulfilled and granted for everyone.”
Pepperdine is not the only university to have a Student Emergency Fund. Baylor, Penn State and University of Texas are among the many schools who have this fund, according to their websites. For now, the Pepperdine School of Law and Seaver College have a Student Emergency Fund, but eventually faculty in the Pepperdine Fund office want to extend it to every Pepperdine School, according to Kappus.
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