The Temple University FAST Fund

“(Students)…will fail if they have no books, no pencils, no gas money to get to school, and no food in their stomachs…Covering living costs, at least enough to ensure that their basic needs are met, is a productive investment of resources ….” Sara Goldrick-Rab

There is a gap between financial aid and the cost of attending college, and because students experience economic emergencies such as a lack of food, car breakdowns, job loss or a reduction in work hours that threaten their ability to stay in school, the FAST Fund was founded to offer quick financial relief from incidents that might keep students from continuing their studies and completing their degrees.

TAUP will be administering the FAST Fund (Faculty and Students Together) at Temple University at the request of Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab, creator of FAST, and Founder of the Wisconsin HOPE Lab and HOPE Center for College, Community and Justice . She is a Professor of Higher Education Policy and Sociology at Temple. Norma Corrales-Martin, TAUP Treasurer and Associate Professor of Teaching and Instruction in CLA’s Spanish and Portuguese department will oversee the Fund at TAUP.

The FAST Fund offers emergency assistance to Temple University students, and all funds collected are used exclusively for this purpose and are tax deductible. Some common requests at other institutions’ FAST funds have been to secure housing for homeless students or to help students avoid eviction, purchase textbooks, secure glasses, purchase gas, and help pay car repairs.

We hope to help students from all programs at the University. Many TU students are economically disadvantaged. Homelessness among students is a major problem in higher ed, and has been the single biggest reason students have contacted the FAST Fund in other institutions.

The University runs an emergency grant fund through the Office of Student Affairs and we will be coordinating support for individual students with them. The FAST Fund is less restrictive and its application procedure is less involved than those of the Office of Student Affairs. It is designed to move quickly to help students.  The University’s fund operates only when classes are in session, and the summer or winter breaks are when many students experience serious problems.  The FAST fund will be available to students throughout the year.

Donate to the FAST Fund

Application process

  1. A student (or an instructor, counselor or advisor a student’s behalf) can initially contact TAUP by calling 215-763-2287, emailing, or stopping by the TAUP office (721 Ritter Annex, Main Campus) to see if they would be best served by applying for the FAST Fund or to the University’s emergency grant fund through the Office of Student Affairs.
  2. A student applying for FAST Fund support can download the application here. The information the student will need to supply includes
    1. personal contact information
    2. phone and email address of a faculty reference who will support the application. The academic standing of the student is not a factor in the assessment of the application.
    3. documentation of the cost of the specific need (ex: an invoice, rental agreement or some proof of need.)*
    4. name and contact information for the person or entity that FAST Fund will be writing the check out to. The student should also provide any information that the FAST Fund will need to get the payment to the payee (mailing address, etc.) Checks are not written out to the student directly.  
  3. Once the application is complete, the student should drop it off to the TAUP office in person between 9-4pm M-F (except holidays) at 721 Ritter Annex on Main Campus. If this is not feasible, the student should contact the office by phone to make another arrangement. 215-763-2287
  4. The complete application, including the faculty reference, will be reviewed by two individuals at TAUP. At least one of these individuals will be a TAUP officer.
  5. If approved, a check will be written to the landlord, bookstore, testing center, car repair shop, grocery store or other vendor. The amount is based on the student’s documented request, how much money we have available, and what if anything the student can afford or may be able to secure from another source.

If the funding is not urgent (needed within a few days) the student will be directed to apply for the University’s funds, informing us of the result. TAUP may facilitate an application to the college’s fund by contacting those who administer it or the VP of Student Affairs to expedite the request.


*This will not be required for food

Donate to the FAST Fund

TAUP will engage in fundraising activities specifically for the FAST Fund. Profits from these activities will be exclusively for the Fund and will be put to no other use. TAUP will set aside some money every year for FAST Fund fundraising activities. Fundraising expenses beyond this budget must be paid for by the fundraising activity itself, and the majority of the money raised must go to the Fund.  Anyone interested in helping with FAST Fund fundraising efforts can contact

Donate to the FAST Fund