University Fund supports students and research with emergency fund
The coronavirus has the world in its grip, and these are confusing and uncertain times for us all. Many people are worried about the consequences of the corona crisis, about their future, short and long term. Students and scientists are no exception. For a resilient society, scientific knowledge is indispensable. And young talent must be given all the space they need to focus on the future instead of the financial constraints they are currently experiencing. The Tilburg University Fund supports students and researchers with scholarships and grants, and it has set up a special emergency fund for this purpose. The first students have already been helped with this.
Special emergency fund
The Tilburg University Fund has set up a special emergency fund. With donations from alumni, staff, students, and friends of the university, the fund can contribute to solving problems caused by the corona crisis. The fund offers financial support to students and researchers so that they can focus on what is important: their studies and their research.
Out of the lock-down
This crisis is not over any time soon and will have a lasting effect on our society. Experts have their say on a daily basis: virologists, doctors, economists, psychologists, and lawyers. Not infrequently associated with Tilburg University. Tilburg University shares its knowledge with the aim of helping or improving society. Now, more than ever, this approach is of great value. Tilburg scientists continue their work unabated and also interpret, analyze, and research the developments concerning the corona crisis and its possible consequences. The important thing is that we come out of this intelligent lockdown step by step. The knowledge of these experts is indispensable here. What consequences does this crisis have for the economy? How do you deal with privacy when it comes to apps? And what are the mental consequences of this lock-down? These are important questions about which a lot of knowledge has already been gathered, but about which the experts also need to acquire new knowledge.
With mathematical modeling and data science, we're trying to support the approach in these countries
Zero Hunger Lab
A good example of essential research with direct impact concerns food security in a crisis. This research is now also focusing on the corona crisis. In the Zero Hunger Lab, Professor Hein Fleuren and his team focus on refugee camps, slums, and developing countries. A lock-down? 1.5 meters distance? Almost impossible there.
Fleuren: “The real COVID-19 disaster will probably happen when we are already recovering: in the low and middle income countries. People there go back and forth between fear of death by the virus or death by hunger. With mathematical modeling and data science, we're trying to support the approach in these countries.”
Support for students
The emergency fund not only supports such research. Attention is also paid to financial support for Tilburg students who are in financial distress due to the corona crisis. In March, the deans of students sent out the first signals that students are experiencing difficulties. The government does make arrangements for students, but these are by no means always sufficient. Many students fall between two stools and find themselves in financial distress as a result of the corona crisis. The problems are diverse. Think of students from Brazil or Iran who can't get their money transferred, or students who don't have a laptop and get stuck with their studies because the library is closed. Also, many students have lost their jobs and with that their source of income. Or, think of students whose parents suddenly lose their income. These students could use a little help. The Tilburg University Fund uses donations to create a safety net for them.
I was afraid I would have to delay my studies until the financial situation was resolved
Ana Salazar, student Global Management of Social Issues
The safety net was also there for Ana Salazar, bachelor student Global Management of Social Issues from Mexico. “As the COVID-19 crisis sweeps the world, it has also created an impact on the Mexican economy. Not only was my family's income affected for the unforeseeable future, but the exchange rate of Mexican pesos to the U.S Dollar as well. As a non-European, I am not allowed to work in the Netherlands therefore my parents have been my only source of financial support for rent, living expenses and tuition. Being away from home has allowed me to widen my perspective and get to fall in love with the Netherlands. Given the uncertainty of how long the safety measures will remain in place, I was afraid I would have to delay my studies until the financial situation was resolved. Thanks to the Emergency Fund, I can focus all of my attention on my studies in Tilburg. I'm especially grateful for the alumni who have donated and were able to ease the financial burden of students in a situation in which they feel helpless."
You can also contribute by making a one-off donation to the Tilburg University Fund. In this way, you support both students in financial distress and important scientific research into the consequences of the corona crisis.
Date of publication: 30 April 2020