Dear Old Westbury Panther,
Congress recently passed the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) which earmarked $22.7 billion for the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF). The U.S. Department of Education has directed colleges and universities to award emergency grants to eligible students for expenses related to the disruption of their education caused by the coronavirus. Eligible expenses include tuition, food, housing, technology, health care (including mental health care), or childcare.
Old Westbury was allocated $2,761,337, which represents the minimum amount in emergency grants that must be awarded to students. There are no specific student eligibility requirements but campuses are required to prioritize financial grants to students with exceptional need, such as students who receive Pell grants and students with the lowest Expected Family Contributions (EFCs).
As funds become available, we will email eligible students notifying them of the amount of the grant award. These funds will be paid directly to students and do not require students to complete an application. Students will receive a direct payment of their emergency grant by electronic transfer to their account (if enrolled in e-Refund) or a check mailed to their address of record.
These grants are in addition to the amounts awarded earlier under the CARES Act, they are not loans and will not need to be repaid. Also, they will not affect your financial aid award amounts for academic year 2021-2022. Please understand that it is your responsibility to notify the Bursar Office immediately if you will not incur expenses that meet or exceed the amount of your emergency grant.
We recognize the financial impact on students and parents during these uncertain times and our intent is to disburse these grants directly to students as quickly as practicable to help defray some of the unanticipated costs caused by the coronavirus disruption.
You should contact the Bursar’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or the Financial Aid Office at email@example.com if you need assistance. Additional information can be found in the CRRSAA/HEERF Frequently Asked Questions posted in the CARES Act website.
Len L Davis, Senior Vice President & CFO
On behalf of the SUNY Old Westbury CARES Act Committee