Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds
Sentara College of Health Sciences has awarded $343,619 in federal student grants from the CARES: Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (HEERF I), CRRSAA: Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (HEERF II), and the ARP: American Rescue Plan (HEERF III). The college has signed and returned to the Department of Education a Certification and Agreement assuring that the college intends to use the applicable amount of funds designated under the CARES, CRRSAA, and ARP (a)(1) and (a)(4) programs to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students. Individual grants ranged from $207 to $2,275.
Funds were granted to eligible students who experienced disruption of campus operations due to or related to the coronavirus. Emergency grants were distributed based on Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as reported in FAFSA documents and based on criteria established by the U.S. Department of Education. Students not eligible to receive CARES Act funding and who are experiencing unexpected financial hardships due to COVID-19 or unexpected emergencies were directed to contact the following offices for additional support:
Center for Student Success
Office of Financial Aid
Student Eligibility for Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds
Graduate and undergraduate students must:
Be an active student or graduate and have been enrolled during the Spring, Summer, or Fall 2020 semesters and/or the Spring and Summer 2021 semesters
Not be in default or owe an overpayment to a federal aid program
Meet the college’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy
Funding from the federal CARES Act, Section 18004, Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, allows institutions to evaluate students for federal emergency financial aid grants. Emergency Relief Grant funding is limited to students who meet eligibility criteria. Federal Emergency Relief Grant funding will not likely meet your complete financial needs. These funds are a one-time grant and are not renewable. The following are considered expenses under a student's cost of attendance, related to the disruption of university operations due to COVID-19 by the Department of Education:
Campus Housing: Expenses related to paying rent for off-campus housing, or to reimburse housing costs and living expenses due to relocation.
Food: Expenses related to buying groceries, or to reimburse meal costs associated with finding noninstitutional alternatives.
Moving/Shipping: Expenses associated with the closure of residence halls, such as moving, shipping, and storage fees.
Technology: Expenses related to the purchase of technology needs for distance learning, not limited to computers, printers, software, and internet access.
Transportation: Expenses related to unexpected transportation costs (e.g., returning from study-abroad, moving off campus, returning home) or prepaid bus, subway, or commuter rail passes.
In January 2021, Sentara College of Health Sciences received $371,502 in HEERF II funding, of which $89,280 is designated to provide student grants for financial assistance related to the coronavirus pandemic. In May, the college received Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds III (HEERF III) as authorized by the American Rescue Plan of 2021. The total amount received was $739,582, of which $384,384 is also designated to provide grants for financial assistance to students. The remaining funds from both allocations, designated “Institutional Portion,” are to defray expenses associated with coronavirus (including lost revenue, reimbursement for expenses already incurred, technology costs associated with a transition to distance education, faculty and staff trainings, and payroll) and make additional emergency financial grants to students, which may be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care), or child care.
As of this update, a total of $343,619 in Emergency Financial Aid Grants were disbursed and received by the 526 students and graduates who qualified to receive the funds. A total of $178,560 was drawn from the student portions and $165,059 was drawn from the institutional portions of the HEERF Grants (CARES - HEERF I & CRRSAA - HEERF II) for Postsecondary Education.
Notification of Award
Students receiving federal emergency grants were notified via email. By accepting the funds, students are confirming they incurred expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus.
The College is currently reviewing the disbursement requirements for HEERF III and is actively reviewing the guidelines and determining student eligibility for these grant funds. A notice to eligible students will be sent via email in the coming weeks.
Quarterly Budget and Expenditure Report
A copy of the most recent Quarterly Budget and Expenditure Report may be obtained here.