13 Percent of University Students Consider Dropping Out Due to COVID-19 Crisis, Boro Survey Finds

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Survey of 600 current and incoming U.S. students finds pandemic has caused tremendous uncertainty.

The underlying reality is that a huge number of students are in tenuous financial circumstances, and this crisis poses a unique opportunity for schools and policy makers to work together to solve that problem

The COVID-19 outbreak has created increased financial hardship among undergraduate and graduate students alike. Campus closures, limited access to aid, and a reduction in job opportunities are all contributing to heightened uncertainty that is leaving some students reconsidering whether they’ll continue their education at all. That is the finding of a new survey from - Boro, a fast-growing provider of credit and financial education to college students.

The survey, conducted May 15 through the online surveying platform Pollfish, asked ​​over 600 current and incoming U.S. university students how the coronavirus crisis impacted their finances and educational plans. Among the findings:

  • 13 percent are considering dropping out (or have already done so)
  • 60 percent are unsure whether they’ll continue their education for the next school year-
  • 30 percent said they've lost a job or source of income as a result of the outbreak

“While the COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented financial hardships for all Americans, students are a particularly vulnerable population,” said Hao Liu, CEO and founder of Boro. “The underlying reality is that a huge number of students are in tenuous financial circumstances, and this crisis poses a unique opportunity for schools and policy makers to work together to solve that problem.”

Over 300 colleges and universities were forced to shut their doors in an effort to keep students safe during the height of the coronavirus pandemic. While the U.S. Department of Education set aside $6.28 billion to help students cope with the financial impact of the virus, many students still face financial uncertainty, such as housing and food insecurity, as well as a lack of quality internet access.

In addition, the survey found that undergraduate students’ daily lives have been negatively impacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • 62 percent have cut back on what they spend on food, heat, water or other essential items.
  • 39 percent have had to change their living situation or moved out of a house or apartment.
  • 21 percent have had to take on additional debt.

“College students are the future of this country," Liu said. "If we don't support them now, in the hour of their greatest need, what does that say about us?”

About Boro

Boro is a mobile financing app for college students who are underserved by mainstream lenders. Founded in 2015, Boro uses machine learning to help students manage their spending, build their credit history, and access credit, even if they have no prior credit history. Boro loans help cover the small but critical expenses – like textbooks, class fees, groceries, and test prep materials – that can snowball and force students to drop out, leaving them with debt but no degree.

In 2018, Boro secured a $100 million dollar line of credit from Arcadia Funds. In 2019, the company closed a $12 million Series A round. Boro is headquartered in Chicago; its financial products are available at over 200 colleges and universities in 31 states across the country.

For more information, please visit GetBoro.com.

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Jillian Smith
Boro
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