FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- Colleges in the commonwealth and across the country are creating plans to support students in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
Kentucky State University announced earlier this week its plan to provide a 25% refund to all students that can be applied to their accounts for the fall semester. Students who graduate or transfer will get a check in the mail.
KSU is also planning a virtual commencement celebration for May, but plans to have an in-person commencement when the governor gives the OK, part of 10 student commitments the university issued Tuesday.
“We had some caucus time and said, 'What are some tangible things that we can do to make sure we meet the needs of our students and families?'” KSU President Dr. M. Christopher Brown said.
As for other universities across Kentucky, plans are in the works.
University of Louisville spokesperson John Karman said it will refund $3 million to students for meal plans and housing. Graduation is postponed, but U of L said there will be a special commencement for 2020 graduates in December. The university is also exploring options for virtual celebration this spring, but nothing is finalized.
As for the University of Kentucky, prorated financial credits for housing and dining began last week. In addition to the prorated credit, students returning in the fall will receive $125 in "flex" dining dollars. UK will give a 36% refund for housing to students. That will be applied to the students' accounts if they're returning to campus in the fall or by check for graduating seniors. UK posted this information on their website in early April.
Western Kentucky University spokesperson Bob Skipper said WKU is refunding students for housing, dining and parking that was already paid for. In terms of graduation, WKU has announced plans to have a commencement celebration during its annual Parent and Family Weekend on Sept. 19. However, Skipper said the university is allowing students to participate in December 2020 or May 2021 commencement if they so choose.
As all of these universities work to finalize plans, Brown said it's important to provide answers during times of uncertainty.
“We don’t know when we’re going to reopen," he said. "We don’t know when this is going to happen. But these are 10 things we know we can definitely do and provide."
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