CARES Act funding now available for CTC students

Special to Leader-Press

 

Central Texas College (CTC) announced the application for eligible students to receive funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act is now available. The emergency financial aid allows CTC to help cover student expenses resulting from the disruption of campus operations caused by the coronavirus outbreak and efforts to stem the spread of the virus. More than 4,500 CTC students worldwide may be eligible for funding.  

To be considered for CARES Act funding, students must have been enrolled in at least one face-to-face or blended (hybrid) college credit class on March 13, 2020, or later which was later converted to an online class. Students who were previously enrolled in 100 percent distance learning (online) courses are not eligible. Also, Early College High School and other dual credit students are not eligible.

The Department of Education has established strict guidelines on eligibility requirements. In order to help CTC adhere to those guidelines, a student must have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file to verify they meet eligibility requirements. A student does not need to be awarded federal financial aid to apply for the CARES Act. But, if they have not yet completed a FAFSA, they must do so in order to be considered for CARES Act funding. Applicants must also provide an explanation of expenses related to the disruption of CTC operations due to COVID-19.

Eligible students should submit the CARES ACT Emergency Student Aid application using the CTC online Etrieve system. The maximum amount awarded per student is $750 and awarding of funds will be made on a first-come-first-serve basis while funding is available. Submission of an application does not guarantee an award will be made. Once the application is submitted, it will be evaluated to verify eligibility. Results or requests for additional information will be communicated via Etrieve and/or to a student’s Eagle Mail email address.

Funding from the CARES Act is a one-time grant. It does not reduce, negate or replace financial aid. If eligible, students can only receive one CARES ACT Emergency Aid grant with a maximum amount of $750. Funds can be used for food, housing, course materials, technology equipment or childcare expenses. However, all expenses must to be tied directly to a specific change in how the college is operating due to the coronavirus.

“If a student needs a laptop, hotspot, camera or other technological need because the college moved to online courses may be considered an allowable expense,” said Bruce Vasbinder, CTC public relations coordinator. “Other examples of eligibility include a student in the residence hall who moved out because of the closure and experienced higher rent and food costs than the residence hall room and board rates. If a student worked on campus and the job was suspended because the college changed operationally due to the coronavirus, funds may be used to pay for expenses previously covered by the lost income. Another allowable expense is if a student using the CTC Child Development Center is required to pay a higher fee for childcare services than that charged by the CTC.”

Students not eligible for Cares Act Emergency Financial Aid Funding may qualify for CTC Eagle Aid. This funding is designed to help students experiencing unexpected financial issues based on a documented need. Students do not receive any payments through Eagle Aid as all payments are made directly to a vendor such a utility supplier. The Eagle Aid application can be found on the CTC website. 

To apply, students can visit ctcd.edu/cares-act-aid or if they have questions, email caresact@ctcd.edu.

 

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