Updated: August 04, 2020 at 7:56AM

Financial Hardship

Students, faculty, and staff facing financial hardships during this time should consider contacting the appropriate office below. The University may be able to offer assistance.

The Employee Compassion Fund

The Employee Compassion Fund, funded by Notre Dame faculty and staff as part of the annual United Way campaign, is designed to assist colleagues facing temporary financial difficulties. The grants either permanently resolve the hardship or provide a bridge to a permanent solution. Those wishing to contribute may do so through a designated PayPal collection portal. More information is available at  https://unitedway.nd.edu/compassion-fund/.

Graduate School Emergency Fund

The Graduate School Emergency Support Fund provides limited assistance for students in the Graduate School who are facing unexpected and urgent financial need resulting from sudden, unforeseen emergencies for which no other source of assistance is available. All full-time, degree-seeking graduate students in good standing are eligible to apply. Examples of emergency needs include but are not limited to natural disasters, fire damage, need for temporary housing, travel emergencies, death in the family, accidents, legal expenses, and safety needs. 

For more information and to apply for the Graduate School Emergency Fund, please email Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the Graduate School, John Lubker.

Law School

Students with specific questions or needs are encouraged to contact the Law School’s Student Services Program Manager, Christine Holst-Haley.

Pregnant & Parenting Student Assistance Fund

Notre Dame’s Pregnant and Parenting Student Assistance Fund (PPSA) manifests the University’s commitment to life by assisting pregnant and parenting students and their families and easing some of the hidden financial costs that can impose huge financial burdens for students with families living on a budget. Funding for the PPSA is secured by the Office of Life and Human Dignity in the McGrath Institute for Church Life and disbursed through the Office of Student Affairs. Although the fund does not meet the needs of every student-family, it does provide much-needed relief for families encountering a major strain on their finances. In order to attend to those student-families in most need, the PPSA prioritizes financial assistance in the following circumstances, with particular concern for undergraduate and international students:

  • Pregnancy-related expenses beyond what is available through local resources, such as the Women’s Care Center.
  • Childcare in circumstances of extreme need, especially in situations when a spouse is unable to care for children because of a medical condition or in cases when a student is solely responsible for the care of his or her child.
  • One-time emergency expenses affecting the family’s food, transportation, shelter and well-being.
  • Marital counseling in crisis situations for a maximum of 10 sessions or $1,000.

To apply for the PPSA Fund, please email Peggy Hnatusko. To learn more about services available to Notre Dame student-families, please visit the Family Resource Center.

Office of Student Enrichment

The Office of Student Enrichment Student Experience Funds are available to undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need. Eligibility is determined by the Office of Financial Aid. The Fund provides financial assistance toward opportunities and resources that enable students to get the most from their Notre Dame experience. Funding is made possible through the generosity of the Notre Dame Student Union, alumni, and friends.

For more information regarding these resources for undergraduate students, please email the Office of Student Enrichment.  

Office of Financial Aid - Change in Circumstances

The Office of Financial Aid is committed to a thorough and personal review of each family's individual circumstances as the basis for determining a student's financial aid eligibility. However, we recognize that family circumstances can change unexpectedly, affecting a family's ability to contribute toward educational expenses. 

A student’s financial aid is based upon income from two years prior to the start of the academic year as reported on the financial aid application. If a family's circumstances change after a student has received financial aid notification, the student may request a review of financial aid eligibility by completing the Change in Circumstances Form. Additional financial assistance is determined on a case-by-case basis and may be in the form of a loan, employment, or scholarship. Submission of this form does not guarantee an adjustment or increase to a student’s financial assistance.

The following may be considered a change in circumstances if not initially reported on the financial aid application:

  • Significant loss of income due to termination or change in employment
  • One-time/non-recurring income
  • Unreimbursed medical expenses
  • Extended family support
  • Parent educational debt

For more information, please visit the Office of Financial Aid.