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Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF III)

Meridian Community College has received additional Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds through a formula from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). As with the CARES Act (HEERF I) and the CRRSAA (HEERF II) funds already released, these grants are provided to assist students with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. Eligible fees under a student’s cost of attendance, such as tuition, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare, are included.

heerf III basics

With an extended timeframe for using these funds of September 30th, 2023, the college expects to allocate maximum total awards per term for our students to provide funds for each semester for the next two years. These funds will each have an application period and will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to students as long as allocated funds are available. Grant awards will stop when the total amount allocated for each semester has been reached based on each semester’s established allocation and guidelines. 

To be pro-active and assist our students with the planning associated with the summer of 2021 and relieve the financial stress related to those costs, the college has established the following process:

Students must complete the 2021 Summer HEERF III application online by July 6, 2021

For students to be eligible, they must meet the following criteria: 

  • Have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus, including the eligible fees under a student’s cost of attendance such as tuition, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care; 
  • Complete a 2021 Summer HEERF III application by the cut-off date of July 6, 2021, and before all funds have been awarded;
  • Enroll in a minimum of 3 semester credit hours over the summer term. Those hours must be “billable” (not free summer classes for teachers, for example).
  • Be a U.S. citizen.

Summer credit students enrolled in a minimum of 3 semester credit hours will be provided a grant equal to the amount of their charges owed to the college for tuition, fees, eBook fees, books, and course materials, plus an award for out-of-pocket expenses. 

The number of applications received and the amount of available funds will determine the out-of-pocket portion of each grant award based on the number of applications received and the amount of available funds. A minimum amount will be awarded to those students who have not completed a FAFSA (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid) or did complete a FAFSA that resulted in an expected family contribution (EFC) calculation over 5,711. The college must prioritize the neediest students and have decided to use the FAFSA EFC to make that determination. These additional funds assist in out-of-pocket costs such as food, housing, health care, childcare, or other related expenses.

 

Students are not required to apply this grant to their account; they may elect to receive the total funds by check. In accordance with the college catalog, deferments are not offered for the summer terms. All tuition, fees, and college charges above any completed and authorized financial aid are due when classes start. However, students who authorize the college to apply this grant to their account will not be required to pay applicable charges before class start dates.

 

The disbursement date is estimated to be mid to late July 2021, when all eligibility criteria and processes have been completed. Announcements will be made at that time. 

HEERF III FAQ

The American Rescue Plan Act provides grants for students who have costs related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. Eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance, such as tuition, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare, are included.

For students to be eligible, they must meet the following criteria: 

  • Have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus, including the eligible fees under a student’s cost of attendance such as tuition, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care; 
  • Complete a 2021 Summer HEERF III application by the cut-off date of July 6, 2021, and before all funds have been awarded;
  • Enroll in a minimum of 3 semester credit hours over the summer term. Those hours must be “billable” (not free summer classes for teachers, for example).
  • Be a U.S. citizen.

Staff who work in Financial Services and Student Services are working jointly to ensure eligible students are awarded grants correctly.

Yes, once you have completed admissions and registered for a minimum of 3 semester credit hours for the 2021 summer term, the application is located on EagleNet on the "Stu. Finances & Records" menu with a link titled 2021 Summer HEERF III Grant Application

No. Unfortunately, the amount of funds provided to the college are limited. We anticipate we will not have any allocated funds remaining by this date. Therefore, once we have passed this application cutoff date, we will not be awarding additional summer 2021 HEERF III grants.

Grants will be made as long as funds are available for up to the amount of tuition, fees, books, eBooks, and required charges on a student’s account and an amount for out-of-pocket expenses depending on your expected family contribution (EFC).

 

The number of applications received and the amount of funds available and, if applicable, your EFC will determine the out-of-pocket portion of each grant award based on the number of applications received, the amount of available funds, and if applicable, your EFC. A minimum amount will be awarded to those students who have not completed a FAFSA (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid) or did complete a FAFSA that resulted in an EFC calculation over 5,711. The college must prioritize the neediest students and have decided to use the FAFSA EFC to make that determination. These additional funds are being provided to assist in out-of-pocket costs such as food, housing, health care, child care, or other expenses.

The disbursement date is estimated to be mid to late July 2021, when all eligibility criteria and processes have been completed. Announcements will be made at that time.

No, neither Pell eligibility nor Title IV eligibility is required to receive a HEERF III grant.

No, these are grants, not loans, and do not have to be paid back.

No. You must be enrolled in a “billable” class—one that requires tuition.

While you certainly may receive funds that allow you to cover all your costs of attendance at MCC, we believe the use of the word "free" is misleading. Why? Because there are specific federal guidelines governing the use of these grant dollars. They are available on a first come, first-served basis, require you to be impacted by COVID, and require you to choose to apply the available funds to your account. The HEERF III grants are intended to be used as an opportunity to address the financial needs of our students who have been impacted by COVID-19 and we take that responsibility very seriously. 

Yes. A student may provide documentation that proves U.S. citizenship to the MCC admissions office. Examples of proof would be a birth certificate or an unexpired U.S. passport. The student will then have their 2021 summer HEERFIII grant eligibility evaluated and awarded if all other requirements were met. 

Please email heerf@meridiancc.edu for any additional questions.

 

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