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Santander Universities funding helps support City students

City receives an additional £25,000 of Santander funding to support students during the Covid-19 pandemic.

by Matthew Little (Communications Officer)

City, University of London has received additional funding from Santander Universities to provide financial support for students affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The extra funding is an addition to £45,000 of existing Santander donations that were repurposed for use by City’s Covid-19 Emergency Fund, which supports students facing hardship due to the pandemic and by the Business Resilience Fund, which offers cash injections to student start-ups in City’s business incubation space, the Launch Lab.

City partnership with Santander Universities was established in 2007 and extended last year to continue to provide support in three key areas: education; entrepreneurship and employability.

Amin Rirash (BEng Civil Engineering) and Nuria Recio Dos Santos, (BSc Accounting and Finance) at the City Santander signing event. Amin Rirash (BEng Civil Engineering) and Nuria Recio Dos Santos, (BSc Accounting and Finance) at the City Santander signing event in October 2019.

Matt Hutnell, Director, Santander Universities, said: “Santander is committed to supporting Higher Education as well as local communities across the UK so we’re pleased that our funding is able to be redirected to where it is most needed at this critical time.

“Universities are doing some fantastic work to contribute to the UK’s effort to combat the outbreak of Covid-19, so we’re delighted to collaborate with our university partners in a way which increases their response effort. We look forward to continuing to work with them on supporting both students and the broader higher education community with further initiatives over the coming months.”

Protecting student businesses and funding future entrepreneurs

As well as supporting students in hardship, the additional funding will be used to provide grants to students looking to kickstart an entrepreneurial career during their studies in the wake of Covid-19.

Members of the Launch Lab have already benefitted from Santander funding during the pandemic.

Lauren Le Franc, (Bar Professional Training Course 2017) and founder of the Little Coffee Company, whose business relies on shipment and sales faced difficulty during the pandemic.

Lauren said: “As we didn’t fall into the requirements for support from the government, the Santander fund was the only option we had.

“We will be using the fund to help design, develop and source our new packaging. Since the pandemic we knew we had to pivot to better cater to at home coffee drinkers.

“The fund has been imperative for us to be able to react so quickly and to increase our marketing on all our social media platforms to help reach our customers.

“Using the money, we have been able to run online campaigns with companies such as Panda Packaging, UUNN and we are now successfully stocked with Daisy and Tills, Social Supermarket and Clued Up Coffee.”

Lauren-Le-Franc-of-Little-Coffee-Company Lauren Le Franc, (Bar Professional Training Course 2017) of Little Coffee Company

Facing similar circumstances, Cass alumnus Peter Storey (MBA 2003) and his Crowdfunder, Greenlit, shared a similar experience at the start of lockdown.

Peter said: “We were due to host a major event for film producers, planned as the first in a series. Unfortunately, as the situation worsened throughout February and March, our sponsors pulled out one by one, until finally public gatherings were banned.

“The resilience support allowed us to obtain professional-quality webcasting equipment and subscriptions, so we could move everything online.

“Our first event, which brought in top industry panellists to discuss the practical, financial and legal implications of filming post-Covid-19 was a huge success, with great feedback and nearly 200 attendees.”

For more information on the funds available or to apply for support see here.

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