Harvard Deciding Whether to Take Coronavirus Relief Money for Students After Trump Criticized Them



Shortly after the briefing, Harvard issued a statement saying it would keep the grant, noting that it would direct 100 percent of the funds to “provide direct assistance to students facing urgent financial needs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The statement continued: “This financial assistance will be on top of the support the university has already provided to students — including assistance with travel, providing direct aid for living expenses to those with need, and supporting students’ transition to online education.”

A spokesman told PEOPLE on Wednesday morning that the school was “continu[ing] to review the additional guidance from the Department of Education related to the [relief grant] and will make a determination as to whether we will seek to access the allocation that was made to Harvard.”

The school stressed again that if it did take the money, it would go to students only and not costs.

Trump singled out Harvard by name, at the coronavirus briefing.

“I’m not going to mention any other names, but when I saw Harvard,” he said — signaling his displeasure.

“Harvard did not apply for, nor has it received any funds through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for small businesses,” the university said in its Tuesday statement. “Reports saying otherwise are inaccurate. President Trump is right that it would not have been appropriate for our institution to receive funds that were designated for struggling small businesses.”

After Harvard made its response Tuesday, Trump continued to blast them, writing on Twitter that “their whole ‘endowment’ system should be looked at!”

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