More than half of all college students struggle to have their basic needs met. This forces them to choose between their educational goals and paying their bills. In 2020, nearly 3 in 5 college students experienced basic needs insecurity. Nationally, students of color are more likely to experience basic needs challenges, including food, housing, access to physical and mental healthcare, transportation, and even technology. The scariest part? Just 20% of students who pause their education for financial reasons will graduate. With rising tuition costs and the lack of available grants and scholarships, many students feel stuck.
Helping students meet their basic needs is an equity issue, and there are several barriers to accessing support. Many students aren’t aware of their eligibility for support, several think others are in greater need, and half don’t even know how to apply for support. However, once these barriers are overcome, the results are astounding. Of students who received emergency aid, 69% said the funding increased their chances of graduating. Offering resources and promising practices focused on basic student needs is the first step in the right direction. The bottom line? Supporting basic needs leads to success, and these goals are well within reach for students everywhere.
Source: Kentucky Student Success Collaborative