Siena Heights University has received federal funding from the CARES Act, which provides assistance for student expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus. Based on the guidelines received by the University from the Federal Government eligible expenses include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, childcare, and other expenses related to the disruption of campus operations.
What is the Cares Act?
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is federal legislation that provides a variety of financial support to individuals and organizations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The CARES Act includes a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) that provides more than $14 billion in emergency funding to higher education. Of those funds, more than $6 billion must go directly to students in the form of emergency financial aid grants (HEERF-student share) for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Siena Heights University will receive a total of $1,545,879 of which at least half ($772,940) must be provided directly to students for their expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child care. The other half may be used by the University to cover costs associated with significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus.
Am I eligible?
You must be eligible to receive Title IV federal financial aid. Generally, if you receive any type of federal or state financial aid including federal grants or guaranteed student loans you likely meet this requirement. Students must be Siena degree-seeking; all degrees are eligible: associate's, bachelor's and master's.
International, dual enrolled, guest, non-degree seeking, non-U.S.-citizen students, domestic students who are not eligible for Title IV aid due to issues like loan default or drug convictions and students enrolled exclusively in online courses prior to March 13, 2020 are not eligible for CARES Act funding.
Do I need to apply?
You do not need to identify yourself as eligible, Siena Heights will review all students for eligibility.
How much will I receive?
It depends. All eligible students in the Winter 2020 semester already received a standard monetary credit from the CARES Act relief funds for the coronavirus pandemic impacts. A designated University committee also reviewed extenuating circumstances for additional support in Winter and Summer 2020 semesters. Extenuating circumstances brought forward by eligible students in the Fall 2020 semester will also be considered. The committee will determine the amount of funding, if any, due to the particular impacts of COVID-19. Acceptable support for extenuating circumstances are for student’s cost of attendance, which include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care.
How will I receive this money?
Emergency grants will be processed through the Office of Student Accounts. Students will receive their funds via BankMobile according to their refund preference. Students who have not established their refund preference with BankMobile should follow these steps to select how you would like to receive your funds.
- Visit www.refundselection.com.
- Enter your personal code (if you still have the initial green envelope or via email).
- Don’t have a code? Visit www.refundselection.com and click on the “Need A Code?” link.
- When using this option remember to use your Siena Heights email address (ex: email@example.com).
- Select how you want your money delivered. You have two options:
- Direct deposit to your current bank account (no additional account to manage).
- Open an online account with BankMobile (a monthly service fee is charged).
For more information about BankMobile, visit www.refundselection.com. In addition, your Student Accounts team is currently working remotely. We are happy to answer your questions or concerns by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our Student Accounts webpage on My Siena.
Do I need to repay the money?
No, you will not need to repay any money received through the CARES Act.
Can I apply for additional funding?
All students who receive a CARES Act credit are eligible to apply for additional consideration by filing an application for “Extenuating Disruption Circumstances”. The application for this can be found here.
*If you are not eligible for CARES Act funding, Siena Heights University encourages you to apply for support through the Saints Strong Fund at the Saints Strong Application. This fund was established by donations from Board members, alums, faculty, staff, and friends of the University specifically to assist students with emergency needs like the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Does this funding affect my other financial aid?
No. This is emergency grant funds to help you manage unexpected expenses related to the coronavirus, and it will not have any impact on other financial aid you may be eligible to receive.
What if I still have an account balance?
Any CARES Act funding awarded to you will be paid to you directly, and it will not be applied to any outstanding balances owed to Siena Heights University. Any outstanding balance will remain the responsibility of the student.
Once CARES Act monetary credits are received, students may choose to utilize those monetary credits to pay any outstanding bills they may have by contacting the Office of Student Accounts at email@example.com.
Are the Emergency Grants taxable?
No. Click here to view the latest updated guidance from the U.S. Treasury Department.
Please contact the Office of Student Accounts or Financial Aid Office with any questions about processing or eligibility of CARES Act funding.
Questions regarding additional funding through the Extenuating Disruption Circumstances Application or Saints Strong Application can be sent to Dean for Students Michael Orlando at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This emergency student aid program is funded by a $3.18 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education under the CARES Act (PR/Award No. P425E200004).