Colorado College’s Report on Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act
Colorado College was the recipient of federal funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, which provides emergency relief funds to organizations and individuals affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Below we report on our spending of Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
Report #3 - August 9, 2020
On March 27, 2020, the President of the United States signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act (H.R. 748, Public Law 116-136), which provides emergency relief funds to organizations and individuals affected by the coronavirus pandemic. (Digital version available.) The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), found in Section 18004 of the CARES Act, provides funding to institutions of higher education “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus.” Institutions of higher education were allocated funding for two purposes: “to defray expenses … incurred by institutions of higher education” and “for grants to students for any component of the student’s cost of attendance.” This report details Colorado College’s (CC) use of funding from its first HEERF award, no less than fifty percent of the funds in the form of Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.
Acknowledgement of Funding and Certification
Colorado College acknowledges signing the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students on April 10, 2020 and submitting it via grants.gov on April 11, 2020. We received notification of funding from the U.S. Department of Education on May 4, 2020. Colorado College’s award period runs from April 20, 2020 – April 19, 2021.
Colorado College will receive a total allocation of $1,151,391 under the HEERF. In accordance with the institution’s Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students, at least $575,696 (50%) will be provided directly to students impacted by campus disruptions due to the coronavirus.
Funds Distributed to Date
As of August 9, 2020, Colorado College has distributed $304,359.40 in funding directly to students.
According to guidance issued by the Department of Education as part of a “Frequently Asked Questions” document available on the DoED’s CARES Act HEEFR page: “Only students who are or could be eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), may receive emergency financial aid grants …. The criteria to participate in programs under Section 484 of the HEA include but are not limited to the following: U.S. citizenship or eligible noncitizen; a valid Social Security number; registration with Selective Service (if the student is male); and a high school diploma, GED, or completion of high school in an approved homeschool setting.”
We have determined that 846 Colorado College students, having filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), are proven eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and are thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004 of the CARES Act. We have determined that, based on our documentation, 469 more students are eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004 of the CARES Act due to their being US citizens, being in receipt of a social security number and being eligible to work; they simply have not yet filed a FAFSA. Total number of eligible Colorado College students: 1,315.
As of August 9, 2020, 381 students have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant under Section 18004 of the CARES Act.
Methods Used to Determine which Students Receive Aid and How Much
Colorado College used the following method to determine grant funding:
- Initial disbursements of $1000 were made for food support to all Pell-eligible students on the full campus meal plan who were displaced from campus.
- Second disbursements of $200 were made for food support to all Pell-eligible students on the reduced meal plan who were displaced from campus. (At the launch of the semester, they had already received Colorado College grant funding in recognition of the difference in cost between a full campus meal plan and a reduced campus meal plan.)
- Colorado College works with students to meet their full need for the cost of attendance through the calculated parental contribution, loans, work study and grants. For those students who were unable to meet full need due to the disruption caused by the closure of campus, Colorado College issued cost of attendance grants to assist in closing the gap in need.
- Colorado College established an Emergency Request Committee to evaluate all requests for additional funding due to campus interruptions and the change in delivery of instruction.
All requests were evaluated with the understanding that needs will change, and new needs will present themselves, throughout the course of the award period, which ends on April 19, 2021.
Requests were also evaluated in the context of each student’s circumstances. For example, some students needed support for Blocks 7 & 8 only, while some needed support through the summer.
Requests were also assessed using the following general guidance:
- Travel grants, up to $600 for domestic, up to $1,200 for international
Off Campus Food/Housing Insecurity
- No funds available for family or dependent needs
- Off campus food insecurity limit of $200 per month
- Summer housing and food support
- Co-pay and deductible assistance
- Dental assistance available up to $1,000
Text Book Assistance
- Total textbook costs that exceed the one-block book allowance of $155
Reunification with belongings
- To assist with expenses to get belongings home or to pay for shipping of belongings
Instructions or Directions Given to Students
CC notified and provided instructions, directions, and guidance to its students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants through email and through postings on our Coronavirus webpage (https://www.coloradocollege.edu/other/coronavirus/). Emails were sent to all students, regardless of their eligibility, to notify them of financial support. All college-issued emails related to coronavirus disruptions are posted to the COVID-19 Message Archive section of the Coronavirus webpage after being sent.
- 2020-21 Academic Year Announcement
- CC Community Commitment: COVID-19 Health and Safety
- Facilities Operations & Closures
- Support Resources for Students
- Request Support From the Coronavirus Emergency Response Fund
- Give to the Emergency Response Fund
- HR: Working Through COVID-19
- Colorado College’s Report on Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act
- Form to Report Plans for Working Onsite
- Printable Safety Posters
- Teaching & Learning Resources
- Accessing Support Services
- Classroom Protocols
- For Students: 4 Tips for Learning Online
- Practices for Supporting International Students Abroad — Suggestions for Staff and Faculty
- Study Abroad & Other International Travel
- UCHealth Optum Triage Line
- Virtual Fitness Resources
- Wellness & Mental Health
- Face Mask Recommendations
Emergency Response Fund
Because many in the Colorado College community asked how they can help, we have established the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Emergency Response Fund to meet needs during these uncertain times. Many of our alumni, parents, and friends, as well as members of our Board of Trustees and the president’s cabinet, have contributed. The fund also provides the college with resources to respond to unexpected expenses developing during this crisis and for lost revenue.
If you wish to contribute, please visit https://ourcc.coloradocollege.edu/covid19responsefund
In response to inquiries, we have created a form for families interested in donating their room and board credit to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Emergency Response Fund: https://ourcc.coloradocollege.edu/covid19refunddonation. Alternatively, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.