Houston (US), Apr 13 (PTI) The University of Houston, which houses many students from India, has re-launched its emergency fund to assist students facing unexpected financial hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Cougar Emergency Fund is designed to offer as much as USD 1,500 in support to eligible students for school-related costs to keep them enrolled and on track despite financial hardship caused by the pandemic.

With classes being delivered online through the summer, some students are struggling with technology needs such as access to Wi-Fi and new software requirements, while others have lost income from work stoppages.

The university hopes to raise USD 5,00,000, which will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the UH Foundation and the James Wade Rockwell Fund.

"Many of our students are struggling during this unprecedented public health crisis, yet I'm inspired by their collective resilience and determination as we overcome these obstacles together," said its Indian America president, Renu Khator.

"Much of the financial fallout is beyond anyone's control, and I'm hopeful money from the Cougar Emergency Fund will enable our students to address some of their financial need so they may continue their studies."

Eligible students include those currently enrolled in undergraduate or graduate courses who are in good standing, with priority given to those enrolled full time. The fund is administered through the UH Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

"While I'm proud to see how our students are adapting to this new normal of social distancing and online classes, we are sympathetic to their financial struggles and remain committed to providing the necessary support, financial or otherwise, to see them through," said Richard Walker, UH vice president for student affairs and enrolment services.

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