Emergency Medical Fund

What is the EMF?

The EMF is a scholarship for graduate students who face financial hardship due to medical debt or expenses.


The purpose of this fund is to aid graduate students in the College of Natural Resources and the Ecology Center facing financial hardships due to medical expenses that constitute a financial burden greater than 10percent of their annual income.


The College of Natural Resources (now the Quinney College of Natural Resources) Emergency Medical Fund was established by Tammy Wilson, a doctoral student in the Department of Wildland Resources at Utah State University. In September 2005, Tammy was seriously injured while riding a bicycle. She broke her back and surgery was required to repair the injury. Many friends within the college began raising money to help pay her medical costs.
Fortunately, Tammy’s medical care was covered by Workers Compensation. The money raised to cover Tammy’s medical expenses ($3,725.48) was instead donated, establishing the Emergency Medical Fund. Fundraising efforts since 2005 have supplemented these initial funds. Students with outstanding medical debt that constitutes 10 percent or more of their annual income are eligible for assistance from the fund.


  1. The Emergency Medical Fund is available to graduate students in the Quinney College of Natural Resources or graduate students in the Ecology Center enrolled at the USU Logan Campus and in good standing with their respective colleges, departments, and, if applicable, the Ecology Center.
  2. A maximum of $6,000 per person will be awarded to cover medical expenses. Expenses may include but are not limited to medical bills, medications, physical therapy, occupational therapy, psychological counseling, transportation for treatment, housing during treatment or other expenses associated with complete recovery. Medical expenses incurred are defined broadly to include spouses, established domestic partnerships, and/or declared dependents. When applying as partners, the financial burden will constitute 10 percent of the applicant’s combined total annual income.
  3. To be eligible, medical expenses must be incurred while enrolled as a student in QCNR or the Ecology Center. The application for this scholarship must be submitted within a year of the diagnosis as stated on the applicant’s first medical bill. A person is still eligible if they have graduated and all of the above conditions have been met. However, the new income of the graduate will be taken into consideration. Students with pre-existing conditions that meet the above criteria also qualify for this fund.
  4. Applicants are limited to a single EMF application per medical claim per academic year. Applicants are, however, permitted to file multiple applications originating from separate and unrelated medical claims. Additionally, applicants are permitted to submit applications for previously considered or -awarded claims in subsequent academic years while the student remains in standing as outlined in Requirement(1) but may not submit a claim within one calendar year of the previous award date. 
    1. For example, if an applicant was awarded an EMF scholarship on Jan 15, 2016, for the academic year 2015-2016, the applicant may apply for a subsequent EMF scholarship in the academic year2016-2017, but not before Jan 15, 2017. Applications for previously considered or -awarded claims must be adjusted to reflect current financial expenses and will not include costs that have already been paid.

Required Application Documents:

  1. Potential recipients submit an application, detailing their medical and financial situation. Additional required documents to submit along with the application include:
    1. Most recent W-2 (if the applicant is a first-year graduate student, provide a university contract and all previous paystubs) and claims of additional income.
    2. Finalized insurance claims (including an explanation of benefits).
    3. Itemized medical bills and completed Itemized Bill Spreadsheet.
    4. Letter submitted to the insurance company for financial assistance and response from the insurance company
    5. Other receipts documenting expenses (e.g., childcare expenses during recovery) the applicant considers relevant to explain the situation. Receipts should be presented with an explanation of their relevance to the claim. Consideration of these expenses in the final award is subject to the discretion of the review committee.
    6. Applicants must include all relevant information regarding medical expenses; any sensitive information will be redacted according to HIPAA compliance.

Download QCNR Emergency Medical Fund Application Materials


  1. Applications must be submitted in-person to USU’s Insurance Coordinator, currently Katelyn Richins (see contact information below), in USU’s Student Health and Wellness Center within one year of the diagnosis as stated on the applicant’s first medical bill. 
  2. Completed applications will be reviewed by a committee headed by the QCNR GSC President/Medical Liaison, the QCNR Associate Dean, and a representative of USU’s Student Health Services (SHS) as designated by the SHS director. Awards will be decided by group consensus. The committee reserves the right to request additional information from the applicant.
  3. Applications will be reviewed as they are submitted, and applicants should expect a response within 2 weeks of submission of all required documents. The maximum number of awards will depend on the funds available.

Contact Information:

Katelyn Richins (USU Health Services)
Email: katelyn.richins@usu.edu
Phone: (435) 797-3505

Office Location: 
Health and Wellness Center (SHWC) 112
            850 East 1200 North
             Logan, Utah 84322


All sensitive, private information will be viewed only by USU’s insurance coordinator. Anonymity of applicants will be protected andsensitive information redacted, according to HIPAA compliance.