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Special COVID-19 Updates

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Student Emergency Funds

Reporting for Student Portion of the CARES Act Emergency Relief Fund

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”), March 27, 2020, directs institutions receiving CARES Act funding to submit a report to the Secretary of Education describing the use of funds distributed from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (“HEERF”).

The CARES Act requires institutions to use no less than 50 percent of the HEERF allocation received from 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).

On April 9, 2020, the Department published documents related to the Emergency Financial Aid Grants, including a letter from Secretary Betsy DeVos, a form Certification and Agreement for signing and returning by institutions to access the funds, and a list of institutional allocations.

  • An 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
    • Southwestern Community College signed and submitted the Certification and Agreement form on Wednesday, April 22, 2020.
  • The total amount of funds that the institution will receive or has received from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students
    • On Friday, April 24, 2020, Southwestern Community College received $ $4,626,632 to be distributed as 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 of the date of submission (i.e., as of the 30-day Report and every 45 days thereafter)

    As of July 28, 2020 – SPRING/SUMMER 2020

    • TOTAL amount of aid disbursed: $2,811,700.00
  • 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
    • While HEERF-student share dollars are not Title IV financial aid, The Department of Education’s April 21, 2020 guidance states that students must meet requirements in Section 484 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 in order to receive HEERF emergency grants. This guidance limited the total number of students eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants. Southwestern College identified 7495 students that met the said guidance.
  • The total number of students who have received a Federal Emergency Relief Grant under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act

    As of July 28, 2020 – SPRING/SUMMER 2020

    • TOTAL number of students Unduplicated: 5204

The method(s) used by the institution to determine which students receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

  • Completed SWC Federal Emergency Relief Grant application
  • Completed a FAFSA application
  • Title IV eligible under Section 484 of the Higher Education Act of 1965:
    • US Citizen or Eligible Non-Citizen
    • Registered with Selective Service (males only)
    • Valid Social Security Number
    • High School Diploma, GED, or completion of high school in an approved home school setting
    • Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment in an approved degree or certificate program
    • Not be enrolled in elementary or secondary school
    • Be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
    • Submit Statement of Eduational Purpose (if applicable)
    • Not be in default on Title IV grants or loans
    • Actively enrolled at the time of application and disbursement in a minimum of .5 units

The College used the following criteria to determine award amounts:

Spring 2020
Grants will be prorated based on current enrollment status based on the information below:

  • Half Time or above (6 + units): $400.00
  • Less than ½ time (.5 to 5.5 units): $200.00

Students who declared experiencing loss of income and/or participation in support programs will be awarded an additional $300.00 with either of the above enrollment statuses.

Summer 2020
Eligible Spring applicants will be awarded summer grants based on enrollment status. Grants will be prorated based on current enrollment status based on the information below:

  • Half Time or above (6 + units): $400.00
  • Less than ½ time (.5 to 5.5 units): $200.00

 Fall 2020
Grants will be awarded to eligible enrolled students that have not been awarded this grant in prior terms. Eligible enrolled students include those directly impacted by “the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus” and have technology needs and or associated costs. Students will need to submit a Fall 2020 Federal Emergency Relief Grant application in order to be considered. Funds are limited and will be awarded on a first-come-first-serve basis. All eligible students will receive $500.00 to support the needs of technology and or associated costs.

As of September 1, 2020 - FALL 2020

  • TOTAL Fall 2020 amount of aid disbursed: $1,342,500.00
  • TOTAL Fall 2020 number of students Unduplicated: 2,685

Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants.
Please visit our Financial aid website to find CARES Act Emergency Grant application information to students.