The Department of Education requires quarterly reporting for CARES Act (HEERF I), CRRSA Act (HEERF II) and ARP (HEERF III) funds received for both Student Emergency Grant Funds and for Institutional support. Effective for the fiscal quarter ending 9/30/2020, Puget Sound will publish by the 10th of the month following each quarter-end subsequent to 9/30/2020 a quarterly report of HEERF I, HEERF II and HEERF III for Institutional funding expenditures made under Section 18004(a)(1):

Quarterly Reporting 09-30-2020
Quarterly Reporting 12-31-2020
Quarterly Reporting 03-31-2021
Quarterly Reporting 06-30-2021
Quarterly Reporting 09-30-2021

Effective for the fiscal quarter ending 9/30/2020, Puget Sound will publish by the 10th of the month following each quarter-end subsequent to 9/30/2020 a quarterly report of HEERF I, HEERF II and HEERF III for Student Emergency Grant Fund expenditures made under Section 18004(a)(1). The format for reporting expenditures for student emergency grants is different from that of the institutional portions of these grants. Below is information in chronological order for each round of HEERF funding granted to Puget Sound.

Current HEERF III Application

CARES Act 30- and 45-Day Fund Report

As directed by the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the university provides the following information to satisfy requirements for the 30-Day and 45-Day Fund Report. This serves to satisfy initial reporting requirements as provided by guidance from the Department of Education.

I. The University of Puget Sound signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students, GAN P425E200187 for Project 84.425E, under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on April 10, 2020. The university intended and did use no less than 50 percent of total funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

II. Pursuant to the completion of the Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students, on April 22, 2020 the university requested from the Department of Education its full allocation of $709,028 for Student Emergency Financial Aid Grants. The university received its allocation from the Department on April 24, 2020. 

a. As of May 20, 2020, $188,373.44 in Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act had been disbursed to 291 eligible students.

b. As of July 6. 2020, $285,430.82 in Emergency Financial Aid Grants had been disbursed to 521 eligible students.

c. As of August 18, 2020, $320,589.71 in Emergency Financial Aid Grants had been disbursed to 553 students.

d. As of August 31, 2020 and through calendar year-end, the number of eligible students was 1599.  

e. As of December 31, 2020, a cumulative total of 917 students received award distributions under CARES ACT totaling $709,028 in award distributions. This represents full expenditure of Student Emergency Grant Funds available to students through the CARES Act (HEERF I).  No further quarterly reports for student emergency grant for CARES Act (HEERF I) will be made as the funds have been fully expended.

III. Grant amounts ranged from $25 to $3,107, with 607 grants less than or equal to $1,000 and 344 grants greater than $1,000. In general, grants were limited to $1,000 unless circumstances presented by students through the application process were particularly dire. The majority of grants were provided to support technology needs for transitioning to remote learning, emergency travel expenses related to closure of campus residential facilities, professional packing fees for personal belongings left in residential spaces, return travel to campus to retrieve personal belongings, emergency return to the U.S. from out of country study abroad programs and to remedy food and housing insecurities.

IV. During the 2019-20 Federal Award year an estimated 1,745 students at the University of Puget Sound were eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA) and thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act. Details of awards made to students enrolled in spring 2020 and summer 2020 are provided above in Section II.

V. The university provided CARES Act emergency grants to students through two pathways:

a. Students self-identified and applied for CARES Act grants through a simple online application process. Applications were reviewed for reasonableness, eligibility of expenses and eligibility of applicant under existing HEA rules. Once approved, an emergency grant award was made using the student’s financial aid award record table, the grant was posted to the student account and funds were disbursed to the student via E-Refund or via a paper check mailed to the student’s permanent address.

b. The university identified groups of students who experience a qualified expense or demonstrated critical need and made block awards to groups based on eligibility of expense and HEA eligibility of awardee. In this case the student did not need to take action to be considered for the block award. Award amounts were created in student financial aid record tables, posted to the student account and disbursed to the student directly via E-Refund or paper check mailed to the student’s permanent address.

The application utilized by students was accessible at www.pugetsound.edu/caresactfunds. Applications were reviewed on a weekly basis using a method that captured submissions received from Monday through Sunday. The application process remained open through November 13, 2020 to students who were registered for fall 2020 and/or who had been enrolled in spring 2020. At November 16 it was decided to distribute remaining CARES Act funding across a population of students who were enrolled in fall 2020 and who were a.) high need as evidenced by official EFC, b.) had not yet received funding through CARES Act and c.) were borrowing federal direct loans (a  proxy for financial need).  

VI. On April 29, 2020, the university communicated to all enrolled students via an all-student email message the availability of CARES Act funding in support of emergency student aid grants. This communication included eligibility requirements under HEA rules, descriptions of eligible expenses covered by CARES Act, and the link to the simple online application residing on the university’s website. The university’s CARES Act website also includes full description of the CARES Act funding rules, eligibility requirements and descriptions of eligible expenses. Students receiving block awards are similarly notified, to include steps to complete a current FAFSA for non-filers so that student eligibility under HEA rules can be confirmed. 

VII. The university will continue to update this information at least by the end of each calendar quarter after May 20, 2020 or as directed by updated guidance from the Department of Education.

 

CRRSAA (HEERF II) Reporting

Puget Sound received Grant Award Notification P425E200187-20A for project 84.425E CRRSAA  (HEERF II) Certification and Agreement on January 17, 2021, the action of which was to supplement the original grant award by $709,028. It was and is the intention of the university to use no less than $709,028 to provide CRRSAA (HEERF II) Grants to students.  

2995 students who were enrolled between March 2020 and February 2021 were eligible for funding through CRRSAA (HEERF II). Of those, 2005 were enrolled during spring 2021.

On February 23, 2021, an email communication was sent to all enrolled students announcing the availability of additional student emergency grant funding through CRRSAA (HEERF II). In accordance with federal guidance, the HEERF II funds were made available to students who were in need of financial support due to the difficult circumstances brought forth by the coronavirus. This could include support for food, housing, tuition, course materials, technology, travel and other expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19. Students dealing with a financial hardship or whom had incurred unexpected expenses due to the pandemic were encouraged to apply for funding. The federal guidance associated with HEERF II funding required the university to prioritize exceptional need in awarding grants to students. If a student believed that they had a need, they were encouraged to complete the online request form. Recipients did not have to demonstrate financial need through traditional measures such as the FAFSA, but still needed to provide some clear reasoning for their request.  Requests were processed based on the schedule below:

Request Deadline:

Receive Response Notification By:

Monday, March 1, 2021

Monday, March 15, 2021

Monday, March 15, 2021

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Thursday, April 15, 2021

 

Students were advised to be clear and concise in describing the nature of expenses, and to ensure that the amount requested was accurate. Award amount decisions were based on the type of expense, the description and reasonableness of the request, and available funding. Available award amounts to be requested were $250, $500, $1000, $1500 or $2000.  A link to an online request form was provided in the email communication, and was also available through direct access on the university’s official website.

The application process was closed on April 1, 2021 at the point remaining funding levels were nearly exhausted. Additional disbursements will be made as student emergency circumstances are identified outside of the standard application process.  Remaining CRRSAA (HEERF II) Funds will be disbursed either in direct response to such circumstances or in conjunction with the application process for ARP (HEERF III), anticipated to be launched July 1, 2021.    

As of March 31, 2021, the university had distributed $480,500 in HEERF II in emergency grants to 301 eligible students. Grants ranged in amounts from $250 to $2000, with 67 awards provided between $250 and 1000 and 234 awards provided between $1500 and $2000.

As of June 30, 2021, the university has distributed $693,955.66 in emergency grants to 422 students. Grant amounts ranged from $250 to $2000, with 94 awards of $1000 or less and 328 awards between $1500 and $2000. $15,072.34 of the $709,028 HEERF II funding allocation that remains will be distributed beginning July 2021 in conjunction with HEERF III emergency grant deployment.

As of Sept. 30, 2021, the university distributed the final $15,072.34 in HEERF II funding to fully expend the HEERF II allocation of $709,028. In addition, we have distributed an additional $385,064.07 in HEERF III awards. Those awards ranged from $100 to $2,500 across 349 students. In total, we have disbursed $400,136.41 in student emergency grants funded by under HEERF programs since June 30. 

The HEERF funding application remains open to enrolled students seeking support. The university has assumed a cap of $2,500 in aggregate funding to any one student in an effort to ensure we are able to meet the needs of the broadest population of students who seek support.