The Chicago Tribune ran an article describing how university students are being impacted financially by COVID-19. The front page article features Dominican University student Ximena Castillo, who is struggling to juggle schoolwork and the job she needs to help cover her tuition. Ximena has been helped through institutional aid from Dominican but needs to pay down her outstanding balance before she can register for spring classes.  

“It’s a lot on my plate,” she said in the article. “I feel like either my work suffers or my school suffers, and it’s so hard.” 

Ximena, a graphic design major, was juggling two jobs on top of school for a while but dropped one because she was too exhausted to keep up with school. She is now concerned that she might not be able to register for spring semester classes because her outstanding balance is over the university’s $1,000 threshold.

Mark Carbonara, director of academic advising and first-year experience, has been helping Ximena look for scholarships.
“Our students will work their tails off—second and third shift—in order to pay for college,” he is quoted in the article. But those jobs are disappearing because of COVID-19.

Ximena received an early holiday present when several Tribune readers reached out to help her and other Dominican students in her situation. Happy Thanksgiving, indeed!

The full Chicago Tribune article can be found here.