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ASU CARES Act Student Fund Grant / Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)

In compliance with the provisions set forth under Section 4504 in Title II of the 2020 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, Alcorn State University will provide CARES Student Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The intent of the CARES Act is to provide financial support to offset the cost for expenses incurred as a result of the disruption of campus operations due to the COVID-19 crisis. Awards will range from $450 to $1100 unless otherwise approved at the discretion of the President. Additional funding support will be reviewed and determined on a case-by-case basis.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Reporting- Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students

In accordance with the reporting requirements of Section 18004(e) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, Alcorn State University (ASU), an institution receiving funds under this section, is providing the following information:

  • ASU acknowledges that the University signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement. The institution further certifies it will use a minimum of 50% of the funds, or $2,943,458 received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
  • ASU received $2,943,458 from the Department pursuant to the University’s Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.
  • The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as:
    • August 24, 2020 is $2,369,350
    • September 30, 2020 is $2,369,350
    • November 24, 2020 is $2,943,458 (Final Distribution)
  • The estimated total number of students at ASU eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid (EFA)Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act is 3,265.
  • The total number of students who have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act:
    • As of September 30, 2020 - 2,322 students awarded and received EFA Grant
    • As of November 24, 2020 - 2,322 students awarded and received EFA Grant (additional funds were awarded to 1,203 students previously awarded).

  • ASU has awarded grants of up to $1,100 under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act. Students enrolled during the spring 2020 semester were able to apply for grants via a simple online application process. The ASU Financial Aid receives the applications, review for completeness and eligibility under the CARES Act, and coordinate the awarding of the funds through the Division of Administration and Finance. Eligible students were able to apply for grants for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, including food, housing (such as having to move off campus when dormitories close) course materials, health care, child care, technology-related expenses (such as having to buy a computer when the student's courses are moved online), transportation (such as having to fly home because classes were cancelled or having to return from study abroad when the program is cancelled) and other COVID-19 related expenses.
  • ASU remaining funds of $574,108 was awarded to students that were enrolled Fall 2020 and previously incurred expenses from spring 2020 disruption of classes due to COVID-19. Students received an email with an application link to apply with a preference given to undergraduate students. A total of 1,203 students were awarded a total of $574,108 (277 students at $478 and 926 students at $477).
  • Instructions provided by ASU to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants can be found under the Frequently Asked Questions section on this web page and via email sent directly to students.

Reports

CARES HEERF institutional quarterly report, March 31, 2021.

CARES HEERF institutional quarterly report, December 31, 2020.


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

What is The Cares/Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provided by the Federal Government?

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress and signed into law to provide economic relief from COVID-19. One section of the CARES Act established the Higher Education Emergency Relief fund and sent money to schools to use for emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the pandemic.

Who is eligible to apply for CARES Act funding?

Degree-seeking students enrolled in spring 2020 who are eligible to apply for federal Title IV financial aid are eligible to apply for CARES Act funds.

*Students enrolled in fully online graduate programs, international, and undocumented students are not eligible. It also excludes those who are not currently eligible for aid based on not meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards and withdrawals.

How do I apply? Application is no longer available.

What expenses are eligible to be covered?

CARES Act funds only can be used to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19 such as:

  • Food
  • Housing (such as having to move off campus when dormitories close)
  • Course materials
  • Health care
  • Child care
  • Technology-related expenses (such as having to buy a computer when the student's courses are moved online)
  • Transportation (such as having to fly home because classes were cancelled or having to return from study abroad because of program cancellation)

How will CARES Act funding be distributed?

Funds will be paid through BankMobile.

Contact Bursar’s Office (Need Help Link): https://www.alcorn.edu/offices/finance-and-administration/fiscal-affairs/bursar/bursar-need-help.

How will students be notified if they are approved for funding?

Students will be sent an email notifying them if they are approved for funding.

How will ASU determine initial amount awarded?

  • Spring 2020 CARES Act Initial Awarding:
    • Undergraduate Full-Time ($1,100); Part-Time ($550)
    • Graduate Full-Time ($900); Part-Time ($450)
  • Fall 2020 CARES Act Awarding (Remaining Funds):
    • Preference given to Undergraduate
    • Awards totaling $477 and $478 (Remaining funds divided by eligible undergraduate applicants)

Cares Act Application (Fall 2020) Application Closed


Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II)

HEERF II Application (Spring 2021)

The University must provide grants to eligible students at least the same amount expended from HEERF I. The amount allocated is $2,943,458.

1. Must have a valid 2020-2021 FAFSA on file (an additional application to self-certify will not be made available).

2. Must be a US Citizen to qualify for HEERF II funds.

3. Enrolled spring 2021 students.

4. Priority will be given to students with exceptional need. ASU will define exceptional need as students with an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of 0 – up to 5711 (contingent upon enrollment status).

5. Enrollment status (FT vs PT), classification and financial need according to the FAFSA will be considered in determining the amount of the award. Awards will range from $400 – 1500 and will be awarded until funds are no longer available.

Students with “0” EFC

  • Undergrad/FT – up to $1500
  • Undergrad/PT – up to $1200
  • Grad/FT – up to $750
  • Grad/PT – up to $600

Students with 1 – 5711 EFC

  • Undergrad/FT up to $1200
  • Undergrad/PT up to $1000
  • Grad/FT – up to $600
  • Grad/PT – up to $500

Students with an EFC over 5711

  • Undergrad/FT – up to $1000
  • Undergrad/PT – up to $800
  • Grad/FT – up to $500
  • Grad/PT – $400
6. Students may use the grants toward:
  • Any component of their cost of attendance
  • Emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as:
    • tuition
    • food
    • housing
    • health care (including mental)
    • child care

7. Notification of HEERF II Funds:

  • University will send an email to current enrolled students (U.S. Citizen) providing a link to submit an application.
  • Application will be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid for review
  • Eligible students will be awarded according to above criteria
  • Once students have been deemed eligible, Bursar and Accounting will be notified to disburse funds.

STUDENTS HAVE THE OPTION to Place Their HEERF II Award directly Towards any balance owed. Notify the bursar's offiCE (BURSAROFFICE@ALCORN.EDU) to complete an authorization form.