Financial Aid

Cares Act and HEERF Funding

 

2021 HEERF III Emergency Assistance Grants

October 2021

Cleveland State University has distributed more than $14.8 million in federal funding to support our students. Beginning in October 2021, the University will begin processing emergency grant requests for students who are currently enrolled for fall 2021.

As in past semesters, these funds will distributed based on your application in campusnet through the student portal.

According to federal regulations, domestic students enrolled in Fall 2021, who have experienced an exceptional financial hardship as a result of the Coronavirus and meet the prescribed requirements, are eligible for HEERF III funds. The American Rescue Plan (ARP) requires that institutions prioritize students with exceptional need, such as students who receive Pell Grants or undergraduates with extraordinary financial circumstances. Institutions are expected to establish a transparent process for assessing need. Beyond Pell eligibility, other ways of prioritizing exceptional need could include students who may be eligible for other federal or state need-based aid or have faced significant unexpected expenses, such as the loss of employment, reduced income, or food or housing insecurity.

As announced in the Department OF Education’s final rule, “Eligibility To Receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students Under HEERF” (May 14, 2021, 86 FR 26608) (final rule), the term “student,” for purposes of the phrases “grants to students,” “emergency financial aid grants to students,” and “financial aid grants to students” as used in the HEERF programs, is now defined as any individual who is or was enrolled (as defined in 34 CFR § 668.2) at an eligible institution.

The University is focusing current HEERF III emergency grant efforts to support those students enrolled in Fall 2021 courses, and who meet the eligibility requirements as described and complete the on line application.

 

CARES Act Emergency Funding for Students 

CARES funds have been expended completely, there are no further changes to report.

Cleveland State University has begun awarding the student portion of CARES Act funding from the U.S. Department of Education in the amount of $6.1 million dollars. These awards are to help with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus; such as, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, transportation, childcare and other related expenses.  

The Coronavirus Assistance, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act* was approved by Congress and includes support for higher education, including emergency grants for students facing expenses due to COVID-19. CSU has received approximately $12.2 million dollars of which $6.1 million is designated for emergency grants to our students. The remaining funds are designated for use by the institution to cover unexpected expenses due to COVID-19.  

The U.S. Department of Education issued guidance on distribution of these emergency grants to students, requiring that all recipients meet Title IV eligibility requirements. The grants are 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 childcare). The grants may not fully cover or fully meet the expenses a student has incurred due to the disruption. 

The Process: The University developed an application with checkboxes so students can easily indicate the area(s) of their need. The university selected this approach to provide awards to as many eligible students as possible, while being able to provide greater award amounts to those who indicated greater need.  

Eligibility: 

  • Degree seeking in undergraduate, graduate, law careers 
  • Completed the CARES funding application 
  • Enrolled degree seeking for spring 2020 term as of May 8, 2020. 
  • Not enrolled exclusively in online courses beginning spring semester 2020 
  • Meet Title IV Federal Financial Aid eligibility requirements https://www.csuohio.edu/financial-aid/eligibility-requirements 
  • Maintaining the minimum requirements of Satisfactory Academic Progress. 

Awarding Model: CSU assigned standard grant amounts by category, based on monthly average cost in Northeast Ohio or nationally, in the following categories: food, housing, transportation, course material, technology, health care, child care, and other. Students were awarded based on the categories they indicated on their application.  

The Division of Enrollment Management and Student Success manages the awarding. The grants are disbursed directly to students via their student account.  The grants are passed through campusnet student account and are not be applied to or used to offset any charge, debt, tuition, fees, or other balance in a student account, nor will it be encumbered in any manner by CSU.  

Student grant awards range from $200 minimum to $2500 maximum.  The grant appears in the students account under the following name: Federal CARES Act Award. 

For students enrolled in direct deposit, they will have access to the funds in approximately three business days from the date of disbursement. For those not enrolled in direct deposit, the Office of Treasury Services issues a paper check mailed weekly.  

Students received the following instructions upon receipt of their grant application: Your eligibility for a Lift Up Vikes! Emergency Grant will be reviewed, and we will notify you of your eligibility. Lift Up Vikes! Emergency Grants may, in part, be funded with resources made available via the Department of Education as part of Section 18004(c) of the CARES Act to cover emergency financial needs due to the coronavirus pandemic, and any grants awarded should be used for those purposes. 

Phase 1.  

4/27/20 Application created, available for students to complete.

4/27/20 Grant Application is available.  

4/30/20 Grant awards are beginning to be issued. 

5/22/20 Enrollment Services Student Success has evaluated more than 4,200 student CARES Grant applications (across all careers) who meet the criteria, these student have received $3.8 million of the 6.1. Million thus far.  

7/5/20- Enrollment Services Student Success has evaluated 5,316 student CARES Grant applications, (across all careers) those who meet the criteria, have received $4,472,196 of the 6.1 Million thus far.

10/19/20 - Enrollment Services Student Success has evaluated 5,650 student CARES Grant applications, (across all careers) and those who meet the criteria, have received $5,800,577.50 of the 6.1 Million thus far.

11/16/20 Enrollment Services Student Success has evaluated 7,177 student CARES Grant applications, all careers, and those who meet the criteria have received $6,068,065 of the 6.1 Million thus far.

Phase 2 

Using the application and criteria stated above, once all spring applicants are evaluated/awarded, we will begin assisting our summer-enrolled students using the same eligibility process.   

Phase 3

Using the application and criteria stated above, we will begin assisting our fall-enrolled students using the same eligibility process.   

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)

As required by the U.S. Department of Education our institutional quarterly reports:

PDF icon CSU heerf-quarterly-reporting-Q3 FY20.pdf

PDF icon CSU heerf-quarterly-reporting-Q4 FY21.pdf

PDF icon CSU heerf-quarterly-reporting-Q1 FY22.pdf

PDF icon CSU heerf-quarterly-reporting-Q2 FY22.pdf

PDF icon HEERF 06302021 final.pdf

PDF icon HEERF 09302021 final.pdf

 

Key Facts Regarding Federal CARES Act Grants 

The University acknowledges that it has signed and returned the Certification and Agreement to the Department of Education and has used 100 percent of the funds received to date under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students. ​​​​​​​

  • Total CARES Act funds received: $6,113,383
  • Total federal CARES Act funds awarded $ 6,113,383

Date

Awarded

Total Number of Applications

5/11/2020

$1,962,619

 3587

6/30/2020

$4,452,790

 4296

8/14/2020

$4,598,940

 4482

9/15/2020

$4,599,440

 5676

10/19/2020

$5,799,278

6889

11/16/2020

$6,068,065

7177

12/20/2020

$6,113,383 8003
  • Number of students eligible to participate in Title IV: 13,909
  • Number of CSU students who have completed the CARES application: 8,003
  • Number of CSU students who received federal CARES Act grants thus far 7,177

Key Facts Regarding Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II Reporting: Created Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA)

Acknowledgment of certification and agreement

HEERF II funds

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the CARES Act?  

Who is Eligible for funding though the CARES Act? 

    How is the CARES Act grant amount determined?  

     

    What expenses qualify under the CARES Act? 

     

        What academic careers are eligible to receive the CARES Act grant? 

        How will I receive the grant? 

        I am a graduate or law student. Can I receive the CARES Act grant? 

        I am not Title IV eligible, is there additional help you can provide?  

        Will the CARES Act grant affect my eligibility for Financial Aid in the Fall 2020 semester? 

        Is the CARES grant taxable? 

        U.S. Department of Education (DOE) Frequently Asked Questions: 

        https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ope/heerfstudentfaqs.pdf.pdf 

        IRS FAQ information: 

        https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/faqs-higher-education-emergency-relief-fund...

        NASFAA COVID-19 Reference Page: 

        https://www.nasfaa.org/covid19_heerf 

        * This serves as acknowledgement that the institution 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. The estimated total number of students at the institution 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 5501