CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund
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 component of the federal CARES Act establishes the Higher Education Emergency Relief fund, which provides funds to institutions of higher education, like PA College, for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations caused by the COVID-19 global pandemic. Notably, a portion of these funds is intended to be distributed directly to eligible students.
PA College was approved for $389,320 in funds to distribute to students as emergency grants for expenses related to the disruption of in-person classes due to the pandemic, including expenses such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare. In addition, PA College utilized $35,055 of the institutional portion of the CARES funding for student emergency grants.
The CARES Act requires all colleges and universities participating in the program to provide access to the following information.
- Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences has signed and returned to the Department the CARES Act Certification and Agreement. This Certification and Agreement is the assurance that PA College has used, or intends to use, no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
- The total amount of funds that PA College has received from the Department pursuant to the Certification and Agreement Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students is $426,625, which includes $389,320 from the student emergency fund and $37,305 from the institutional fund.
- The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of submission (i.e., as of the 30-day Report and every 45 days thereafter) is $426,625.
- The estimated total number of students at PA College that are 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 Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act is 879.
- The total number of students who have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act is 446.
- PA College’s method of evaluating eligibility was based on the student being Title IV eligible and based off of the students Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and enrollment to determine which students receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.
- PA College sent emails to all students that were enrolled during the Spring 2020 semester as of March 13, 2020, notifying and reminding them to apply for CARES Act funding. The initial notification email sent to students was as follows:
Good Afternoon! The Office of Student Financial Services is pleased to announce plans to disburse Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act grants to students whose education was disrupted during the Spring 2020 semester by the coronavirus outbreak. These grants are available to assist students with educational costs such as food, housing, course materials, technology expenses, health care and childcare. The grants do not need to be repaid.
To receive CARES funding, you must meet certain requirements, including transitioning from in-person to online instruction during the Spring 2020 semester as a result of COVID-19 and being eligible for Title IV aid as determined by the 2019-2020 FAFSA. Click here to review a complete list of eligibility requirements.
To apply for CARES Act funding, click here. Applications must be received by Tuesday, May 26. In addition, if you have not yet filed your 2019-2020 FAFSA, that must also be filed by Tuesday, May 26. Please note, filing a 2020-2021 FAFSA does not fulfill this requirement.
For answers to many common FAQs, click here or visit My PA College Portal > Student Services > Financial Aid > CARES Act Funding. Contact Student Financial Services with any additional questions.
Additional information regarding how to apply for these funds was located on the PA College portal; the location of this information was distributed to all students enrolled at PA College during the Spring 2020 semester.