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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Undergraduate Student Caregivers’ Experiences during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Financial Hardships, Food and Housing Insecurity, Mental Health, and Academic Obstacles

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The COVID-19 pandemic has created significant hardships for student caregivers enrolled at large, public research universities, according to the Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) Consortium survey of 30,593 undergraduate students conducted May through July 2020 at nine universities. In the survey, 6% of respondents (n = 1,767) identified as caregivers for children, 11% of respondents (n = 3,236) identified as caregivers for other adults (age 18 and over), and 3% (n = 874) cared for both children and adults during the pandemic. Students who were caregivers for children may have been parents caring for their own children or family members (e.g., siblings). Students who were caregivers for adults may have been caring for their family members (e.g., parents, partners, spouses) or others.

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