CARES Act Report –  Emergency Grants to Student

U.S. Department of Education – Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act – Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Section 18004 Reporting Disclosure

Section 18004(e) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act” or the “Act”)), Pub. L. No. 116-136, 134 Stat. 281 (March 27, 2020), directs institutions receiving funds under Section 18004 of the Act to submit (in a time and manner required by the Secretary) a report to the Secretary describing the use of funds distributed from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (“HEERF”). Section 18004(c) of the CARES Act requires institutions to use no less than 50 percent of the funds received from Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care).

The Certification and Agreement directs each institution applying for HEERF funds to comply with Section 18004(e) of the CARES Act and submit an initial report (the “30-day Fund Report”) to the Secretary thirty (30) days from the date of the institution’s Certification and Agreement to the Department.

  1. Cairn University signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement and the assurance that the institution 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.
  2. Cairn University has received $385,761 from the Department for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
  3. Awarding progression:
    1. During the week of May 25th, Cairn University disbursed the Higher ED Emergency Relief Grant as follows: 616 student recipients, with funds disbursed totaling $289,228.  Individual students received disbursements ranging from $178 to $670.
      • Cairn University evaluated 857 students enrolled Spring 2020 at the time the CARES Act funding was provided. Of these enrolled students, Cairn initially determined that 754 students were eligible. Of these 616 undergraduate students were awarded a Higher ED Emergency Relief Grant.
    2. As of August 31, 2020, Cairn University had disbursed the Higher ED Emergency Relief Grant as follows:  623 student recipients, with funds disbursed totaling $373,278 (amounts ranging from $178 to $1,870 to individual students).
      • After initial awarding to eligible full-time undergraduate students in May, all eligible students including part-time undergraduates and graduate students were invited to apply for CARES Act funds not covered by the initial Cairn disbursement in May 2020.
      • There were eighty-eight applications received and total grants of $84,050 were disbursed, with amounts ranging from $250 to $1200 in response to the needs expressed in the application.
        • Seven first-time grant recipients received $1,200 each.
        • Eighty-one prior recipients received a second grant with the amount determined by EFC and financial need:
          • Fifty-two students with EFC of 5576 and lower received $1200 each.
          • Twenty-four students with EFC above 5576 and with financial need received $500 each.
          • Five students with no calculated financial need received $250 each.
    3. As of September 30, 2020, there are no changes to the previous (August 31, 2020) posted information.
    4. As of December 31, 2020, there are no changes to the previous (September 30, 2020) posted information.
  4. Cairn University staff carefully review student data to ensure students meet the eligibility requirements as set forth by the CARES Act, the US Department of Education, and Section 484.  For initial awarding, those who:
      • successfully completed the FAFSA
      • met all requirements set forth in Section 484
      • completed verification
      • were enrolled full-time at the end of the spring 2020 term
      • were enrolled in a residential undergraduate program and were deemed eligible to receive the Emergency Financial Grant funding
  5. Subsequent awarding were for those who:
      • Successfully completed the FAFSA
      • met all requirements set forth in Section 484
      • were enrolled at least half-time at the end of the spring 2020 term
      • were enrolled in a residential program (undergraduate and graduate) and were deemed eligible to receive the Emergency Financial Grant funding
  6. An email was sent to all recipients informing them of this award, how eligibility was determined, and instructions on what they must do to receive the grant.  Additionally, a letter was provided with the disbursement check to each student with information about the source of the funds, how the amount was determined and instructions for applying for additional funds for those that had COVID-19 related needs in excess of the initial disbursement amount.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Reports

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