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CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Grants to Students Disclosure

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund
Financial Aid Grants Disclosure

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The CARES Act provided $14 billion to students and institutions across the U.S. to assist with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19.

Quinsigamond Community College has signed and returned the Certification and Agreement to the Department of Education. We intend to use no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students, and have received a total of $2,652,173 to be used for this purpose ($2,414,181 in the original Section 18004(a)(1) allocation and an additional $237,992 received under Section 18004(a)(2) because we are eligible under Title III). The College added $3,346 to the Student Grant allocation from the CARES Act Institutional Relief Funds.

Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Quinsigamond received an additional  $2,847,122 to be used to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students($2,414,181 in the original Section 18004(a)(1) allocation and an additional $432,941 received under Section 18004(a)(2) because we are eligible under Title III). The College will add an additional $1,329,076 to the HEERF Student Grant appropriations from the HEERF Institutional Relief Funds awarded under the CRRSAA.

Under the American Rescue Plan Act, 2021 (ARP), Quinsigamond received an additional $9,337,795 to support Higher Education Emergency Relief Grants for Students.  The College intends to use these funds to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.


Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Grants to Students

Funds Expended As of 6/30/21:

  • 3,778 students have been awarded CARES Act Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students
  • $2,655,519 in CARES Act Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students have been distributed
  • 3,029 students have been awarded CRRSAA Act Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students
  • $4,176,198 in CRRSAA Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students have been distributed
  • 0 students have been awarded ARP Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students
  • $0 in ARP Federal Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students have been distributed

CARES Act Emergency Funding

Time PeriodTotal # of Students Awarded FundsHEERF Funding Spent

# of Students Awarded Funds Under 18004(a)(1)

HEERF Funding Spent Under 18004(a)(1)

# of Students Awarded Funds Under 18004(a)(2)

HEERF Funding Spent Under 18004(a)(2)
5/13/20 - 9/30/203,506$2,118,5233,506$2,118,5230$0
10/16/20 - 12/31/20565$446,571308$208,579316$237,992
1/1/21 - 3/31/21184$90,425184$90,4250$0

CRRSAA Emergency Funding

Time PeriodTotal # of Students Awarded FundsHEERF Funding Spent# of Students Awarded Funds Under 18004(a)(1)HEERF Funding Spent Under 18004(a)(1)# of Students Awarded Funds Under 18004(a)(2)HEERF Funding Spent Under 18004(a)(2)
1/1/21 - 3/31/212,901$3,188,2152,826$2,861,307201$326,908

4/1/21 - 6/30/21

673$987,983603$881,95077$106,033

ARP Emergency Funding

Time PeriodTotal # of Students Awarded FundsHEERF Funding Spent# of Students Awarded Funds Under 18004(a)(1)HEERF Funding Spent Under 18004(a)(1)
4/1/21 - 6/30/210$0  

CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grants

Who is eligible to receive CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

For Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 - Students must have been actively enrolled (registered and attending/participating) for the semester they are requesting funding.  They must be accepted to the College in a for-credit degree or certificate program.  For retroactive Spring 2020 funding, students must have completed the term.

For Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 - Applicants must meet the criteria to participate in Federal Financial Aid programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), to be considered for federal emergency grants.  The criteria to participate include but are not limited to the following:

  • Admission to an eligible degree or certificate program at QCC;
  • A valid Social Security number;
  • U.S. citizenship or eligible noncitizen status;
  • Registration with Selective Service (if the student is male);
  • A high school diploma, GED, or completion of high school in an approved homeschool setting; and
  • Meet the standards for QCC’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy

***The Commonwealth of Massachusetts was granted an injunction in September and is no longer required to restrict eligibility for CARES Act funding to Title IV eligible students while that injunction is in effect. For Fall 2020 and Spring 2021, while the injunction is in effect and funding remains, the College will not enforce Title IV requirements. However, students must be matriculated into a degree or certificate program for the semester they are seeking funding or participating in eligible programming at the Center for Workforce Development to be considered.  All Title IV requirements have now been lifted for subsequent HEERF funding.

Students can demonstrate eligibility through filing a FAFSA***.

***The FAFSA is no longer required beginning with Fall 2020 emergency grant applications due to an injunction granted to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in September.

For Spring 2020 through Fall 2020, students must not be enrolled in Online Only programs* as of Spring 2020. NOTE: QCC does not accept students to "Online Only Programs".Students can choose coursework that meets their needs with alternating modality to meet any of our program requirements. 

At QCC, we define these as students who:

  • Are enrolled only in one of the following majors: BAC, BB, BT, CAS, ENS, EPCA, GS, and LEC (the majors capable of completion fully via online coursework), AND
  • Who have never taken a ground-based course at QCC.
  • Eligibility will be restricted in Spring 2020 and going forward only for those students enrolled in Spring 2020 who meet this criteria.  While campus restrictions are in effect due to COVID, students in future terms (currently Summer 2020 and Fall 2020) are not being given the option of in person coursework. The course sections they may register for are no longer indicative of their intended or preferred modality.

For funding from the CARES Act 18004(a)(1) allocation, applicants must have expenses related to the disruption of QCC operations due to COVID-19. The disruption to QCC’s campus operations due to COVID-19 include, but may not be limited to:

  • the change from a physical classroom experience to remote instruction,
  • the change to providing support services remotely, and
  • the limitations on usage of campus resources

Based on the requirements in place at the time of awarding each term, QCC estimates the number of students who may be eligible for HEERF Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students as approximately:

  • 4,040 students in Spring 2020 
  • 1,595 students in Summer 2020
  • 5,921 students in Fall 2020 

How Is Eligibility Determined for CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

There are two methods the College intends to use to distribute CARES Act Emergency Funds- Block Grants and Application-based funding.

Block Grants 

  • For Spring 2020 -
    • $270 per eligible student who was enrolled in at least one on ground course for-credit in SP20.  ($120 for increase in utilities due to not being allowed to use campus facilities and $150 for obtaining/upgrading/maintaining internet service.)
    • Students who received a QCC Foundation Emergency Grant (QCFE) for Internet and/or Utilities Only will receive the difference between the $270 and the QCFE they received
    • Prior to disbursement, students will be required to confirm via the student portal that they have these expenses related to the disruption of campus operations related to COVID-19.Students will have until July 6 to complete the acknowledgment.Students who do not complete the acknowledgment will be assumed to have not had expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, and the block grant will be canceled

Application Process

  • Students must complete the QCC Application for Emergency Assistance Grants to request funding. Students who may qualify for funding through the CARES Act will also be required to complete the appropriate year FAFSA to establish eligibility.  (The FAFSA was no longer required effective Fall 2020 due to an injunction granted to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts regarding Title IV eligibility requirements, including citizenship.)
  • Requests will generally be reviewed within 15 business days from their completed submission.
  • Awarding of funds through Section 18004(a)(1) will generally be made on a case-by-case, “first-come, first served” basis.  "First-come, first-served" is based on complete applications for which all information to base a decision is available when processed.
  • Using original CARES Act Section 18004(a)(1) funding, students may receive up to $500 one time if a laptop/computer is marked as an eligible expense; and up to $500 per semester for all other eligible expenses.  Laptop funding is not provided if the student is given a College-issued laptop or funded for a laptop through Foundation funding, except in exceptional circumstances. 
  • For the Fall 2020 semester, Section 18004(a)(2) funding will be distributed alongside Emergency SEOG and Governor's Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funding for Fall 2020 students to supplement any 18004(a)(1) awards received, according to the formula below and up to the total amount of emergency funds requested:
    • Base Award = $200, plus
    • Family Size:  $70 x # in household, plus, plus
    • Food Pantry Use = $50 x # in household, plus
    • Job Loss/Reduction in Hours = $150, plus
    • EFC Range
      • 0 EFC = $200
        1-2499 EFC = $150
        2500-5711 EFC) = $100

    • Total from above multiplied by Enrollment Level Factor:
      • < 6 credits = 0.9
        6-8 credits = 1.0
        9-11 credits = 1.1
        12+ credits = 1.2

  • Students are encouraged to consider all of their financial needs to minimize the number of applications submitted; students applicants can apply more than once.  Additional applications will only be considered if the student has not received the maximum award amounts.
  • Student must apply by the following deadlines:
    • Spring 2020 – By July 10
    • Summer 2020 – By August 14
    • Fall 2020 – By December 1, extended to December 22 for consideration of HEERF funding still available under 18004(a)(1)

All information regarding eligibility for emergency grant funding will be sent to students’ Qmail accounts. All CARES Act Emergency Funds will be disbursed through the student’s account; however they will be refunded directly to the student regardless of any balance they may owe to the College. Effective with the CRRSAA, student charges may be paid directly using student grant funding only if the student has provided written (or electronic) consent. 


CRRSAA Emergency Financial Aid Grants

 

Who is eligible to receive CRRSAA Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

Students must be actively enrolled (registered and attending/participating) in a degree or certificate program for the semester they are requesting funding.  Students must show exceptional financial need to qualify for grants that they may use to assist them with any component of their Cost of Attendance (tuition, fees, books and supplies, housing, grocery, child care, transportation, and other expenses) or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus (such as the costs above, health care, or other related expenses)

***The Commonwealth of Massachusetts was granted an injunction in September 2020 and is not required to restrict eligibility for CARES Act funding to Title IV eligible students or eligible citizens or CRRSAA funding based on citizenship status while that injunction is in effect.  While the injunction is in effect and funding remains, the College will not enforce citizenship requirements. 

Students can demonstrate eligibility through filing a FAFSA (for Institutional Awards) or by submitting the QCC Emergency Assistance Grant application.

Based on the requirements in place at the time of awarding each term, QCC estimates that approximately:

  • 5,112 students in Spring 2021 may qualify for CRRSAA Emergency Financial Aid Grants for Students.

How Is Eligibility Determined for CRRSAA Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

There are two methods the College intends to use to distribute CRRSAA Emergency Student Grant Funds- Institutional Awards and Application-based funding.

Institutional Awards

  • For Spring 2021, students who were registered, enrolled in a degree or certificate program, and who had a 2020-2021 FAFSA on file with the QCC Financial Aid Office as of March 3, 2021 and who had a calculated Pell Grant eligible EFC (0 to 5712) on that date were considered to have "exceptional financial need".
  • Individual Institutional Awards were determined using weighting by individual based on:

    • Dependency Status – Indirect Costs (Room, Board, Transportation, Misc.)
      • Independent Students = $6,077
      • Dependent Students = $3,114
    • Pell EFC Ranges (Proportion of Indirect Costs above considering coverage)
      • EFC = 0                  15%
      • EFC 1-2500            10%
      • EFC 2051-5712        5%
    • Household Size – $45 x # in household = Household Size Base Award
    • 1 Parent vs. 2 Parent Household
      • 1 Parent = Household Size Base Award x 1.25
      • 2 Parent = Household Size Base Award x 1
    • Enrollment Status Multiplier
      • Full-Time = x 1.2
      • Three-Quarter Time = x 1.0
      • Half-Time = x 0.75
      • Less Than Half-Time = x 0.5
  • Any calculated award below $200 is brought up to $200.
  • Example Calculation (Independent, 0 EFC, with 4 in household, Single Parent Household, Reg 12 credits):
    • $6,077 x .15 = 912
    • 4x $45 = $180 x 1.25 = $225
    • $912 + $225 = $1,137 x 1.2 = $1,364 (rounded).
  • Awards were determined one time only based on the FAFSA information available on March 3, 2021.

Application Process

  • Students must complete the QCC Application for Emergency Assistance Grants to request funding. The application was updated on March 1, 2021 to better meet the requirements of the CRRSAA funding eligibility. The previous application for Spring 2021 was accepted and processed for grant eligibility through March 2, 2021.
  • Students will need to demonstrate "exceptional financial need". This may be done using a Pell eligible EFC on the FAFSA, answering "Yes" to having Reduced Hours, Job Loss, Out of Pocket Medical, or Housing Insecurity, or if the student is Suspended from receiving financial aid, or otherwise ineligible for federal/state financial aid. On the new application, the student will also be asked to explain their Exceptional Financial Need, which may be used in lieu of the other items to confirm eligibility.
  • Requests will generally be reviewed within 10 to 15 business days from their completed submission.
  • For CRRSAA Section 18004(a)(1)  and 18004(a)(2) funding, eligible students may receive up to $4,000 in the Spring semester.  Laptop funding is not provided if the student is given a College-issued laptop or funded for a laptop through Foundation funding, except in exceptional circumstances.  Funding will be distributed alongside Emergency SEOG and Governor's Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funding.  The maximum will generally be applied to all emergency grant funding sources, though exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis.

    Awarding of funds through Section 18004(a)(1) and 18004(a)(2) will generally be made on a case-by-case, “first-come, first served” basis.  "First-come, first-served" is based on complete applications for which all information to base a decision is available when processed.

  • Students may apply once per semester.  Additional applications will only be considered if the student has not received the maximum award amounts.
  • Student must apply by the following deadlines:
    • Spring 2021 - By May 1, extended to May 11

All information regarding eligibility for emergency grant funding will be sent to students’ Qmail accounts. All CARES Act Emergency Funds will be disbursed through the student’s account; however they will be refunded directly to the student regardless of any balance they may owe to the College.  Effective with the CRRSAA, student charges may be paid directly using student grant funding only if the student has provided written (or electronic) consent. 


ARPA Emergency Financial Aid Grants

 

Who is eligible to receive ARPA Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

To qualify for HEERF Grants under ARPA, students must:

  1. have been enrolled (registered and attending/participating) on or after March 13, 2020, AND 
  2. have exceptional financial nee

Students may use these grants to assist them with any component of their Cost of Attendance (tuition, fees, books and supplies, housing, grocery, child care, transportation, and other expenses) or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus (such as the costs above, health care, or other related expenses)

Students can demonstrate eligibility through filing a FAFSA (for Institutional Awards) or by submitting the QCC Emergency Assistance Grant application.

QCC estimates that approximately 13,124 for-credit students qualify for HEERF Funding approved through ARPA.  The College is collecting the non-credit # of students.

How Is Eligibility Determined for CRRSAA Emergency Financial Aid Grants?

QCC continues to assess its intended processes based on updates to federal guidance and changes in campus operations associated with the pandemic.  As such, the information below many change.

There are two methods the College intends to use to distribute CRRSAA Emergency Student Grant Funds- Institutional Awards and Application-based funding.

Institutional Awards

Pending available funding each term, for Summer I 2021, Summer II 2021, and Fall 2021, students who are enrolled and in those semesters and who have a 2020-2021 FAFSA on file with the QCC Financial Aid Office with a calculated Pell Grant eligible EFC (0 to 5712) will be considered to have "exceptional financial need".

Individual Institutional Awards are intended to be determined using weighting by individual  based on:

  • Dependency Status – Indirect Costs (Room, Board, Transportation, Misc.)
    • Independent Students = $6,077
    • Dependent Students = $3,114
  • Pell EFC Ranges (Proportion of Indirect Costs above considering coverage)
    • EFC = 0                  15%
    • EFC 1-2500            10%
    • EFC 2051-5712        5%
  • Household Size – $45 x # in household = Household Size Base Award
  • 1 Parent vs. 2 Parent Household
    • 1 Parent = Household Size Base Award x 1.25
    • 2 Parent = Household Size Base Award x 1
  • Enrollment Status Multiplier
    • Full-Time = x 1.2
    • Three-Quarter Time = x 1.0
    • Half-Time = x 0.75
    • Less Than Half-Time = x 0.5
  • Any calculated award below $200 is brought up to $200.
  • Example Calculation (Independent, 0 EFC, with 4 in household, Single Parent Household, Reg 12 credits):
    • $6,077 x .15 = 912
    • 4x $45 = $180 x 1.25 = $225
    • $912 + $225 = $1,137 x 1.2 = $1,364 (rounded).

Awards will be determined one time only after add/drop has ended based on the FAFSA information available on that date.  The intended formula may be adjusted each term to stay within the funding allocation.  If that occurs, this page will be updated.

For ARPA Section 18004(a)(1) funding, eligible students may receive up to $7,000 per student in HEERF funds cumulatively (awarded Spring 2020 through present, if multiple grants were received). 

Application Process

  • Students must complete the QCC Application for Emergency Assistance Grants to request funding. The application was updated on June 30, 2021 to better meet the requirements of the ARPA funding eligibility. 
  • Students will need to certify "exceptional financial need". This may be done on the application through self-certification by the student.
  • Requests will generally be reviewed within 10 to 15 business days from their completed submission.
  • For ARPA Section 18004(a)(1) funding, eligible students may receive up to $7,000 per student in HEERF funds cumulatively (awarded Spring 2020 through present, if multiple grants were received). 
  • Awarding of funds through Section 18004(a)(1) will generally be made on a case-by-case, “first-come, first served” basis.  "First-come, first-served" is based on complete applications for which all information to base a decision is available when processed.
  • Additional applications will be considered if the student has not received the maximum award amounts.
  • The application will remain open until funds are exhausted.
  • All information regarding eligibility for emergency grant funding will be sent to students’ Qmail accounts. All CARES Act Emergency Funds will be disbursed through the student’s account; however they will be refunded directly to the student regardless of any balance they may owe to the College.  Student charges may be paid directly using student grant funding only if the student has provided written (or electronic) consent. 

Instructions, Directions or Guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants

Quinsigamond Community College is still finalizing its full communications plan. QCC’s current communication plan includes:


Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Institutional Relief Funds

QCC received Institutional Relief for "costs associated with the significant deliver of instruction due to the coronavirus."