After missing out on the initial stimulus checks, college students will finally start to see some help come their way. When the $2.2 trillion coronavirus aid package was enacted, $12.5 billion of that was designated for distribution among 5,000 colleges.
The law states that the emergency financial aid grants will be handled by each school in how they issue them. Each college must pay at least half of the money it receives directly to its students. Some students have already begun to see the process begin as a few colleges have quickly started the process of determining who and how much each student will receive. At the University of Pittsburgh, which spans five campuses with 11,000 graduate and undergraduates, an estimated $500 to $,1000 will be handed out per student according to Trib Live. The university saw the CARES Act provide them with $21 million, meaning $10.6 million of that must go to its student body. "Working to cover the cost of living is difficult as a full-time student, and many students have stopped working or have reduced hours as a result of the pandemic," said Nicole Mikologic, who attends the University of Pittsburgh. "Funding from the CARES Act is helpful to cover living expenses and offset lost wages."
Mississippi State University put out a message on its school website explaining the process in which it'll split up the $8.9 million it received. "We want to provide this assistance to our students and their families as quickly as possible and I'm proud of our staff for expediting this process," said school president, Mark E. Keenum. The release shared that the MSU CARES Act application will be completed online with two different forms for two different groups. The first will be just one question in which students write down any expenses ranging in food, course materials, technology, healthcare or childcare costs that occurred amid the coronavirus pandemic. This will go to 75% of students who may be eligible. The other 25%, which includes those who are eligible but either did not complete or send their FAFSA, will have the same question but a second question dealing with the missing FAFSA information.
While some schools are acting quicker than others, when each college first applied for the CARES Act, they were notified that they would have up until one year after receiving it to fully distribute the money.