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  • Relief Act Opens up Possibility for Grants to College, University Students

    Help is on the way to colleges and universities — including more than $6 billion intended to be provided to students whose educations have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The $2 trillion in relief included in the CARES Act stimulus signed into law in late March included $31 billion in aid for education, with part of that money made available to postsecondary education to pass along to students by way of direct grants. APTA was among the organizations that supported the inclusion of assistance for health care education programs and their students in the CARES Act.

    The $6.28 billion allocated for students is part of a $14 billion package intended specifically for use by postsecondary institutions, and is intended to be used to reimburse students "for expenses related to disruptions in their educations due to the COVID-19 outbreak, including things like course materials and technology as well as food, housing, health care, and childcare," according to a U.S. Department of Education press release.

    To receive the funds, institutions must certify to DOE that the funds will be distributed in compliance with CARES Act requirements.

    As for how much grant money will be made available to each institution, the CARES Act stipulates the use of a formula that is "weighted significantly by the number of full-time students who are Pell-eligible but also takes into consideration the total population of the school and the number of students who were not enrolled full-time online before the coronavirus outbreak," according to DOE.

    More details on the money available to each institution, the methodology used for allocations, and a copy of the certificate of agreement that must be signed are available on the DOE's CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund webpage.

    This assistance is in addition to CARES Act relief aimed at federal student loan borrowers who will be able to defer payments and at employers who can offer repayment benefits tax free. This APTA Student Pulse blog post provides more detail on the student loan provisions.


    • My daughter is in a PTA program. Does this apply to her as well?

      Posted by jonda Handley on 4/14/2020 7:12 PM

    • @Jonda - You can check to see if her college is receiving funds and how much by going to: https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ope/allocationsforsection18004a1ofcaresact.pdf

      Posted by APTA staff on 4/15/2020 9:49 AM

    • Our college is on the list and my class was unable to finish clinicals which halted our graduation until further notice. We will receive and incomplete for the semester and have to make up our clinical hours to graduate. I’m curious if we qualify and what the next step is. Thanks!

      Posted by Jason Strickland on 4/16/2020 12:36 PM

    • https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ope/allocationsforsection18004a1ofcaresact.pdf

      Posted by 790 on 4/21/2020 12:31 AM

    • Is this for undergrad students only? I see they use Pell Grant recipients to calculate the aid provided to each institution...

      Posted by Lisa Bradley on 4/22/2020 12:09 PM

    • how does a student apply or receive money from this grant

      Posted by michael s papas on 4/23/2020 8:31 PM

    • @Michael: Higher education institutions use the funds available to them from the CARES Act to provide emergency financial aid grants to students. It is then up to the institution to determine how it will distribute the funds. Please contact your higher education institution if you have any questions. And for additional information about the support being provided to higher education institutions and their students, please see: https://www.ed.gov/coronavirus/

      Posted by APTA staff on 4/24/2020 7:55 AM

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