Federal CARES Act Emergency Funding

CARES Act Emergency Funding to Students

The federal government passed legislation (CARES Act) to enable colleges and universities to support students who have experienced financial disruption caused by the global pandemic. In order to distribute these funds to students who have experienced the greatest financial impact, Loras College has established a process for eligible students to apply for funds. Please note that the federal government has determined both the amount of funds Loras College will receive and student eligibility for funds. According to federal guidelines, only students who are eligible to complete a FAFSA may receive these stimulus funds.

 

Eligible students may complete the application by following the link below. The application process will be open through May 15th. Awards will range from $100 to $1,000 and we anticipate that there will be greater need than we have funds to cover. We will strive to assist the largest number of students possible. All applications will be reviewed beginning May 16th and funds will be awarded by June 30th.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Reporting

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Reporting

Funds Available to Students:

The total amount of HEERF funds available to students equals $636,365.00.

It is required under 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), that institutions receiving funds under Section 18004 of the Act must make public the use of funds distributed from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (“HEERF”). In compliance, the following information is being made public:

  • Loras College acknowledges that the institution signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement and the assurance that Loras College has signed and returned the certification and agreement form and intends to use the funds to provide at least 50% of the emergency financial aid grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
  • The total amount of funds that the institution has received from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students: $636,365
    • Amount distributed to students as of 5/26/2020 = $59,360
    • Amount distributed to students as of 6/29/2020 = $577,005
    • Total number of students eligible for Title IV Federal Aid and therefore eligible for HEERF funds = 1280
    • Total number of eligible students that applied for HEERF funds = 375
    • Total number of eligible students that received HEERF funds = 1062
      • 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: Students complete an application and which is reviewed by professional staff in the College’s Financial Planning Office. Students must be eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and have experienced financial disruption caused by the global pandemic. According to federal guidelines, only students who are eligible to complete a FAFSA may receive these stimulus funds.

      Policy for Determining Which Students Did, or Will Receive Emergency Financial Aid Grant and How Much Funding They Did or Will Receive 

      1. All students received three emails that provided the link to the CARES Act Funds application. Students needed to provide their I.D., name, and the expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19.
        1. The Survey was completed through secure Qualtrics software.
        2. Students could submit more than one application.
        3. Initially, students were told that they needed to have completed FAFSA but this was modified in the application prior to the second and third email reminders. All students eligible for Title IV funds were able to receive funds.
      2. The Financial Planning Office verified the eligibility of all applicants.
      3. The CARES team reviewed all requests. This review team included senior administration and staff from financial planning and business offices.
      4. After all applications were reviewed and funds rewarded, remaining funds were divided by all eligible students.

       

      • Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants: An email was sent to all students on April 29, 2020, from the Senior Vice President, and additionally, the opportunity and a link to the application also was posted on the website and included in an email from the President of the College.
        .

      HEERF Quarterly Report October 2020

      HEERF Quarterly Report January 2021

      HEERF Quarterly Report March 2021


      Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF 2) Reporting

      Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF 2) Report for Student Aid Portion of Funds

       

      School Acknowledgement:

      Loras College has signed and returned the certification and agreement form, and intends to use the funds to provide at least 50% of value as student grants.

       

      Funds Available to Students:

      The total amount of HEERF 2 funds available to students equals a minimum of $637,115.

       

      Funds Disbursed/Approved to Students:

      Amount distributed to students as of 03/30/2021 = $579,250.

      Amount distributed to students between 04/01/2021 and 06/30/2021 = $57,865

      Total spent by 06/30/2021: $637,115.

       

       

      Policy for Determining Which Students Did, or Will Receive Emergency Financial Aid Grant from HEERF 2 and How Much Funding They Did or Will Receive

       

      Our approach in spending HEERF2 student aid funds is as follows:

      • We developed a point system of various data-points to determine “need.” (see chart on page 2). We then applied this point system to all eligible students to obtain a student grant value. We disbursed $579,250 using this method between the months of 01/01/2021 and 03/30/2021.
      • With the remaining balance, we awarded HEERF2 to first and second year students eligible to receive a degree at Loras College and who were behind in their studies.*** We prioritized need amongst this group to distribute the remaining balance.*** our process of landing on this eligibility evolved over time. While the communication loaded indicates that summer course enrollment was required to receive money, we later understood the error of “contingencies” in awarding this money. Once we made that realization, we then awarded anyone deemed eligible (who met criteria summarized in 1b) and sent the second communication to let them know money would also be sent to them. Additionally – we did not require the grant to be applied to tuition after the realization that this was not allowed either. We allowed students to opt in for that if they wanted it used in that way.

      Email notice 1 for amount distributed to students as of 03/30/2021   

      Email notice 2 for amount distributed to students between 04/01/2021 and 06/30/2021 

      Email notice 3 for amount distributed to students 03/09/2021    

      Email notice 4 for amount distributed to Students 06/21/2021 

      HEERF2 Quarterly Report June 2021

       

       

      Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF 3) Reporting

       

      Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF 3) Report for Student Aid Portion of Funds

       

      School Acknowledgement:

      Loras College has signed and returned the certification and agreement form, and intends to use the funds to provide at least 50% of value as student grants.

       

      Funds Available to Students:

      The total amount of HEERF 3 funds available to students equals a minimum of $1,666,634.

       

      Funds Disbursed/Approved to Students:

      Amount distributed to students as of 07/31/2021 = $0.00.

      Amount distributed to students as of 08/31/2021 = $470,196

      • $376,750 was disbursed as summer aid.
      • $93,446 was disbursed to students with bad debt.

      Amount disbursed as of 10/31/2021 = $1,309,171

      • $838,975 was disbursed to students as fall 2021 financial aid.

       

      Disbursed as summer aid:
      Policy for Determining Which Students Did, or Will Receive Emergency Financial Aid Grant from HEERF 3 and How Much Funding They Did or Will Receive.

      For amount distributed to students before 08/10/2021 (summer disbursement)

      1. All degree-seeking & postbacc undergraduate students registered at the college on July 19, 2021. (Graduate students, high schoolers, GRIT, SP, and Second Degree students were removed)
      2. Students within the group above must be eligible for institutional aid at the time of eligibility check to be considered for these funds
      3. With the established group of eligible students, points were assigned based on EFC and Unmet Need so that the neediest group of students could be identified.  Given the impact of EFC on students’ overall need (particularly outside of the academic year), EFC was weighted more than Unmet Need.

       

      Disbursed to students with bad debt:
      Students who left (graduated or withdrew) during pandemic and owed money to the college.

      A second group we identified with great financial need were students who left Loras College during the pandemic and still owed a balance to the college. This was our second eligibility determination and students in this eligibility round were offered a student aid grant that matched the amount owed to the college. This was paid as a cash grant to students unless they gave us permission in writing to apply the cash to their unpaid student account.

       

      Disbursed to students as fall 2021 financial aid:
      Students enrolled in the fall 2021 semester with great financial need.

      1. Eligibility for this disbursement of funds included all degree seeking students registered at the college on 10/04/2021.
      2. Once eligibility was determined, each eligible student was assigned a point value based on a variety of indicators of financial need. The point system was created by a committee consisting of members of the financial aid and business offices along with institutional leadership. Examples of indicators of need included: estimated family contribution (EFC), amount of fall balance unpaid at this point, loan usage, and other data points.

       

      Email notice to students for July disbursement
      Email notice to students for bad debts

      HEERF3 Quarterly Report June 2021 Final

       

       


       

      Visit our Campus Pandemic Communication Page

       

      Please contact Mary Ellen Carroll, Ph.D., Senior Vice President at MaryEllen.Carroll@loras.edu with questions regarding this process and reporting.