Student ARC

Advancing Retention in College with Emergency Aid

Student ARC is a collection of tools, reports, news and insights into the myriad ways institutions across the nation support students with timely, small amounts of money or other resources. Student ARC aims to be the ultimate resource for news and knowledge on emergency aid. Emergency aid is a useful lever to retain college students who face unexpected financial crises.

Learn More

Stat icon: 82%

82% of campuses

offering an emergency aid program have offered a program for 3+ years

Source: NASPA

Stat icon: University

Emergency Loans

are the leading type of aid offered by public 2- and 4-year institutions

Source: NASPA

Stat icon: University

40% of colleges

have financial aid departments managing restricted grants, emergency loans, and completion scholarships

Source: NASPA

Critical Components

These six critical components highlight the capacity institutions need to have in order to build and successfully administer emergency aid resources. Each critical component and its associated resources can be explored further by visiting its page below. Understanding these critical components, and assessing institutional capacity through use of the emergency aid rubric, will support institutions in creating or sustaining different types of emergency aid.


An important element in maximizing the impact emergency aid can have on student retention is dedicating leadership to oversee and guide and work.

Learn More

Securing Resources

To sustain emergency aid efforts, institutions should look for innovative ways to support students in need and identify multiple sources of funds.

Learn More

Policy Implications

Institutions must ensure that emergency aid complies with federal and state aid guidelines and decisions about aid distribution are consistent and fair.

Learn More


To truly meet the urgent needs of students, smart systems can ensure emergency aid resources are delivered quickly and effectively.

Learn More

Increasing Awareness

To successfully deliver emergency aid, colleges and universities must strategically raise awareness about the available resources

Learn More

Measuring Success

To understand the impact of emergency aid on student success and to continually improve services, colleges and universities can use and analyze data.

Learn More


Tools & Resources

The community of institutions interested in emergency aid continues to grow. We'll collect and catalog many of the developed resources and tools so they can be discovered, shared and improved upon by the evolving emergency aid community. Browse this library of tools and resources for implementing, evaluating and improving emergency aid at colleges and universities.

What are you looking for?


More Insights