Yale, University Of Pennsylvania Will Not Accept Coronavirus Funding

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Mary Margaret Olohan Social Issues Reporter
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Two more Ivy League schools announced that they will not accept coronavirus relief funding.

Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania will not accept millions of dollars in funding allocated to them through the CARES Act, Yale announced Wednesday and the University of Pennsylvania announced Thursday. The announcements came after Harvard and Princeton similarly turned down funding Wednesday.

Yale thereby turned down $6.9 million in coronavirus aid, while the University of Pennsylvania turned down $9.9 million.

News that half of the Ivy League schools will not accept the funding came after the Daily Caller News Foundation reported Tuesday that the eight schools that make up the Ivy League were allocated a combined $61.7 million in funding from the CARES Act, despite controlling endowments with a combined value in 2019 of over $140 billion. (RELATED: Trump Tells Harvard To Give Back Its Coronavirus Relief Money)

The CARES Act will provide nearly $14 billion to more than 5,000 universities across the nation, according to the Education Department. The funds are set to be distributed to schools formulaically based on the number of Pell Grant recipients at each institution and their total student enrollment. The formula, which Congress set, does not take into account a school’s financial well-being.

Five Ivy League schools posted operational surpluses of over $200 million in 2019, according to their financial statements from that year.

School Endowment Value as of 2019 Operational Surplus (Deficit) 2019 Federal CARES Allocation
Brown University $4,200,000,000 ($25,362,000) $4,842,231
Columbia University $10,950,000,000 $222,949,000 $12,830,199
Cornell University $7,300,000,000 ($104,236,000) $12,800,980
Dartmouth College $5,700,000,000 $32,607,000 $3,429,350
Harvard University $40,900,000,000 $297,900,000 $8,655,748
University of Pennsylvania $14,700,000,000 $519,173,000 $9,907,683
Princeton University $26,100,000,000 $405,536,000 $2,424,099
Yale University $30,300,000,000 $270,491,000 $6,851,139

Sources: Department of Education, Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Yale University

Brown University, Dartmouth College, Cornell University and Columbia University have not rejected the funding.

Cornell University, which was one of the two Ivy League schools that posted operational losses in 2019, told the DCNF on Wednesday that it would keep all the $12.8 million it’s slated to receive from the CARES Act, and pledged to use 100% of the funds to support its students.

“Cornell has a need-blind admissions policy and we commit to meet the full financial needs of our students,” vice president for University Relations Joel Malina told the DCNF on Wednesday.

The university is anticipating a $100 million shortfall this coming fiscal year due to coronavirus, but the school still aims “to guarantee that every single one, currently enrolled or newly admitted, has the financial resources to complete their Cornell education,” he added.

A Brown University spokeswoman previously told the DCNF that its $4.8 million CARES Act package would be used to help sustain its commitment to offer “generous financial aid” to its students in financial need, but spokeswoman Cass Cliatt added Wednesday that the university is assessing whether it would be fulfilling Congress’s intent to “support the highest need students in the country” by accepting the funds.

Dartmouth College, which posted a more moderate operational surplus of $32.6 million in 2019, has not determined whether it will accept the $3.4 million in CARES Act funding it has been allocated, associate vice president for Communications Diana Lawrence told the DCNF on Wednesday.

Columbia University has not responded to repeated requests for comment from the DCNF.

The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Andrew Kerr contributed to this report. 

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