Department of Education: CARES Act Update
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, includes a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, or HEERF. The fund provides $59,647 to help Worsham students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19.
According to the Department of Education, students who have completed a FAFSA, are Title IV aid eligible and were enrolled in what were intended to be face-to-face classes when Worsham closed its campus on March 13, 2020, are eligible to receive funds.
The CARES Act requires the College identify Title IV eligible students to receive the funding. The College has one year to distribute funds and has been given flexibility on the distribution approach. Worsham has opted to distribute funds equally to all eligible students. For students who are eligible to apply for the FAFSA but have not completed it, they need to do so before they can be considered for CARES Act grants. These students are highly encouraged to complete the FAFSA before June 15.
Under the U.S. Department of Education rules for the program, students who are not eligible for federal financial aid programs are not eligible for federal CARES Act funds. Students who submitted a FAFSA, but did not complete the financial aid process, are encouraged to complete any steps they are missing to see if they qualify for CARES Act funding.
Unfortunately, the U.S. Department of Education does not allow these funds to be used for international students, undocumented students, non-matriculated students, high school dual credit students, or students enrolled in distance-only degree programs.
The CARES Act 30 Day Report
Each institution receiving CARES Act funds is directed 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. The “30-Day Fund Report” information follows:
- Worsham College signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement on April 28, 2020. The College 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 College received $59,647 on April 28, 2020, from the Department pursuant to the institution’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 of September 10, 2020 is $57,600.
- 75 students are enrolled, eligible participates in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 were eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.
- As of September 10, 2020, 72 students have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.
- The College will award CARES Act funds to students who are eligible for Title IV funding as determined by a submitted FAFSA. All eligible students will receive the same amount. The amount that a student will receive will be based on the total number of eligible students that have incurred as a result of the transition to remote learning.
- The College sent multiple emails to students regarding available funding and necessary actions for eligibility concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Gr.