The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented impacts on nearly all aspects of our lives. With over 3.6 million cases of COVID-19 across the globe, only essential services remain open in order to slow the spread of the disease and flatten the curve. Over the course of a few weeks, tens of millions of Americans became unemployed, a devastating statistic, that’s left millions of families and businesses in precarious situations. Although most headlines are unsettling and focus on challenges, not all updates are grim. There are countless examples of what CUMU members are doing to continue to serve as responsible community partners in the midst of crisis.

Related post: CUMU responds to COVID-19

Anchor institutions are fundamental to fostering successful and thriving communities during both challenging and prosperous times. Colleges and universities in the United States and abroad are hubs for research and innovation, employ thousands of people, and spend billions per year procuring goods and services. Now more than ever, the economic engines, human capital, and research agendas of these institutions can support everyone enduring impacts of this pandemic. We are encouraged by the actions CUMU members are taking to support individuals, families, businesses and entire communities during this trying moment in history.

Higher education institutions continue to demonstrate what responsible civic action looks like. Higher education leaders are also disproving the assumption that institutions are slow-moving. Within hours, universities developed plans to shift courses online, while also developing solutions to support the unique needs of some of the most vulnerable students.

We update this list with additional examples weekly. If you have a news item you find valuable and want CUMU to share, email updates to

Student Support

Community Support

Business & Corporate Community

Healthcare & Research