Updated: Sep 4
We know many students have lost access to jobs on- and off-campus, putting their livelihoods at risk. We want to help you find access to money quickly.
Applying for unemployment
If you have lost a job or multiple jobs due to coronavirus, you are likely eligible for unemployment benefits and should file for them immediately. Unemployment benefits are provided at the state level. Find out how to apply for unemployment in Pennsylvania. You will need some information on hand before applying such as your:
Home address and mailing address (if different)
PIN - Personal Identification Number (optional)- If you have previously filed a UC claim using your previous PIN can prevent you from having to re-enter information
Direct deposit bank information (optional) - bank name, address, account, and routing number.
Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) Program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has been approved in Pennsylvania. Through LWA, eligible individuals will receive an extra $300. To qualify for the extra $300, the program requires that eligible individuals must receive at least $100 per week in benefits from:
Regular Unemployment Compensation (UC)
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
Extended Benefits (EB)
Short-Time Compensation (STC) or Shared Work
Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA)
Individuals must also self-certify that they are unemployed or partially unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19. Payments will be made to eligible claimants retroactively from August 1, 2020. Please Note: L&I is currently awaiting final program guidance and evaluating implementation needs for the LWA program. Notifications will be made, and information will be posted on uc.pa.gov when this program is launched and LWA payments begin.
Taking Advantage of Work Study
Check your financial aid package to see if you are approved to participate in the work-study program. If you are, your college may offer remote and in-person opportunities that would allow you to get paid and potentially improve your eligibility for food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). If you are unsure if you are eligible for work study you may speak to a financial aid officer, the Career Services Center, or a counselor.
Applying for TANF
If you have children, you should apply for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to get biweekly cash assistance for a limited time. This program is funded by the federal government but administered through your state. Visit the Department of Human Services site to find out if you are eligible and how to apply.
Local College Emergency Funds
Local Emergency Funds
PHILAnthropy Network verified on August 18, 2020 List of funds for the greater Philadelphia area that can be applied for. The website shows which applications are open and categorizes the funds based on the target audience. Requirements vary based on the fund.
Campus Philly Campus Philly has job and internship listings specifically for college and recent post-graduate people. There are many types of jobs on this website.
Become a Poll Worker Poll workers help the election day run smoothly and assist voters in any way possible. Poll workers are paid for the day, election day, they spend working. There is mandatory training for poll workers. Poll workers cannot be employed by the government and must be eligible to vote themselves.
Like financial aid, we always recommend that you start with accessing money you won’t need to pay back. Sometimes an emergency loan may be necessary, and some organizations can structure help in more favorable terms.
Hebrew Free Loan Society verified on August 17, 2020 Provides interest-free loans to accepted applicants. Applicants must be either Jewish or have a strong connection to Judaism, like working for a synagogue.
Still in need of help? Check out the other sections of the Philadelphia Local Guide.
Please note: Edquity does not endorse nor is Edquity associated with any business, organization, product or service that is mentioned in these Guides. Edquity is not responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the information provided, which may change over time. We encourage you to contact the business or organization listed to receive the most up-to-date information.