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CARES Act Funds

CARES Act Funds

In April 2020, Jefferson College certified its agreement to participate in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund program. Jefferson College received $2,610,156 in CARES Act Funds and $128,156 within the CARES Act Strengthening Institutions Program, from which $1,305,078 was used to provide CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.


Student Eligibility for a CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant

2019-2020 CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grants were only available to students in spring coursework on March 13, 2020, the date of the President's Proclamation Declaring a National Emergency Concerning the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak. CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant recipients had to be Title IV eligible post-secondary degree or certificate-seeking students not on financial aid suspension. A Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the student's academic record was used to document initial eligibility. If a student believed they qualified for Title IV, but did not complete a FAFSA, they were directed to contact Jefferson College's Office of Student Financial Services for assistance.

Although approximately 2,000 Jefferson College students participate in Title IV programs, students in exclusively first 8-week courses, online only students, and those who stopped participating in or withdrew from spring 2020 coursework were not eligible for a 2019-2020 CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant. Students who withdrew from all spring 2020 courses due to a COVID-19 hardship were encouraged to pursue a Withdrawal due to Crisis (WC) grade, of which 220 students were approved to retake courses in 2020-2021 with a Withdrawal due to Crisis Scholarship.


Process for Requesting a CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant

In April 2020, approximately 1,600 candidates for CARES funds were invited through email and text messaging to complete a CARES Act Student Survey confirming whether or not the student incurred additional educational expenses from a move to online learning or costs related to Jefferson College's campus closure in spring 2020. In May 2020, approximately 130 online participants not exclusively pursuing a program online were invited to complete a CARES Act - Online Student Survey.

Qualifying students were reminded by text, phone, and email to complete the CARES Act Survey sent to the student's Jeffco email. Concurrently, press releases regarding the CARES Act allocation were made. Of the qualifying students who attested they had an expense, 733 spring 2020 students received $1,205,028 in CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grants. Some students responded that they experienced no financial impact and others did not qualify due to withdrawal. Only those who responded to the CARES Act Student Survey were considered for funds.

Spring 2020 CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant recipients who remained Title IV eligible after the term ended and who continued their education in summer 2020 received a bonus CARES amount to assist with summer educational expenses associated with the institution's continuation of online learning and adjustments to summer services during the pandemic. CARES funds totaling $100,050 were issued to 267 summer participants in June 2020.

Because Jefferson College received limited funds from the U.S. Department of Education for Emergency Financial Aid Grants, 2019-2020 CARES Grants are no longer available.

CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant Award Amounts

Because institutional allocations were set by a formula prescribed in the CARES Act that weighted the number of full-time students who were Pell-eligible with consideration for the total population of Jefferson College and the number of students not enrolled full-time online before the coronavirus outbreak, FAFSA results and the student's enrollment level at the time of disbursement were considered when awarding.

As such, spring 2020 CARES Grant amounts were $900, $1350, $1800, and $2250 based on the following recipient characteristics:

Expected Family Contribution to College (EFC) of 5576 or less (Pell eligible) = $900
Expected Family Contribution to College (EFC) of more than 5576 (above Pell eligible) = $450

"Plus"

Adjusted enrollment level of 6+ credit hours = $900
Adjusted enrollment level of 1-5 credit hours = $450

Also, CARES Grant Recipients eligible to graduate from an essential health occupation or law enforcement program of study in spring or summer 2020 were awarded a bonus CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grant of $450 to support their completion.

Then, summer 2020 CARES Grant amounts were $250, $350, and $450 based on the following recipient characteristics:

Expected Family Contribution to College (EFC) of 5576 or less (Pell eligible) = $225
Expected Family Contribution to College (EFC) of more than 5576 (above Pell eligible) = $125

"Plus"

Adjusted enrollment level of 6+ credit hours = $225
Adjusted enrollment level of 1-5 credit hours = $125


Support for Next School Year

2020-2021 CARES Emergency Financial Aid Grants

Financial assistance may be available for students struggling to continue their education in fall 2020 due to the pandemic. Jefferson College is using a portion of its institutional Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds to support Title IV eligible 2020-2021 degree or certificate-seeking students with a qualifying COVID-19 emergency impacting fall 2020. Requests will be considered on a student-by-student basis until funds are depleted. For consideration, complete a 2020-2021 FAFSA and submit a 2020-2021 CARES Act Student Grant Application explaining your pandemic hardship and how emergency financial assistance would allow you to continue your education in fall 2020.