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CARES Act: MSU Compliance Statement

This statement provides information to comply with reporting requirements for Morehead State University’s (MSU) participation in the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund.

Under section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act (HEERF), MSU is entitled to receive $6,016,440 of which no less than $3,008,220 must be distributed to eligible students in the form of emergency grants related to disruption of instruction due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On April 15, 2020, MSU signed and returned to the U.S. Department of Education a Certification and Agreement which provided assurance that MSU intends to use, no less than $3,008,220 received under HEERF to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students. 

On April 22, 2020, MSU signed and returned to the U.S. Department of Education a second Certification and Agreement to receive an additional $3,008,220 under HEERF which may be used by the University to cover any costs associated with significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus.

As of May 15, 2020, MSU has disbursed 1,541 grants totaling $824,485 to eligible students. The average grant award was $535. The amount awarded to each student is based on the student’s certification of their actual expenses incurred related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. 

Pell Grant recipients received first priority for the grant funds. Pell students living on campus as of March 13, 2020, received up to $550 in grant funds by just providing certification that they had incurred expenses, related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, equal to or greater than $550 by May 31, 2020. Pell students not living on campus as of March 13, 2020, received up to $300 in grant funds by just providing certification that they have incurred expenses, related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, equal to or greater than $300 by May 31, 2020. Amounts were prorated for part-time Pell grantees based on the hours enrolled. Pell students who had expenses in excess of the amounts listed above were invited to complete an online application to request the additional grant monies to cover their expenses. The additional funds were made available to students on a first-come basis through June 26, 2020.

Students not eligible to receive Pell Grants were also invited to complete an online application to request the grant monies to cover their expenses through June 26, 2020. Grants to non-Pell eligible students were made available to students on a first-come basis. 

MSU estimates that 4,113 Title IV eligible students were enrolled in Spring 2020; the number is based on the number of students who filed FAFSA for Spring 2020.

On May 4, 2020, MSU signed and returned to the U.S. Department of Education a Certification and Agreement to receive an additional $295,468 received under HEERF because MSU is a Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP) Institution. On May 29, 2020, MSU received notification that it was awarded $294,865 in Strengthening Institution HEERF funding.

As of July 8, 2020, MSU has disbursed 2,011 grants totaling $1,292,229 to eligible students. The average grant award was $643. The amount awarded to each student is based on the student’s certification of their actual expenses incurred related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. 

Pell Grant recipients received first priority for the grant funds. Pell students living on campus as of March 13, 2020, received up to $550 in grant funds by just providing certification that they had incurred expenses, related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, equal to or greater than $550 by May 31, 2020. Pell students not living on campus as of March 13, 2020, received up to $300 in grant funds by just providing certification that they have incurred expenses, related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, equal to or greater than $300 by May 31, 2020. Amounts were prorated for part-time Pell grantees based on the hours enrolled. Pell students who had expenses in excess of the amounts listed above were invited to complete an online application to request the additional grant monies to cover their expenses. The additional funds were made available to students on a first-come basis through June 26, 2020.

Students not eligible to receive Pell Grants were also invited to complete an online application to request the grant monies to cover their expenses through June 26, 2020. Grants to non-Pell eligible students were made available to students on a first-come basis. 

On June 26, 2020, in an effort to ensure that students with significant unmet financial aid needs have CARES Act funding available to them, the University reserved remaining CARES Act funds for awards to continuing students with significant need based on their academic standing. On July 1, 2020 communication was sent to 948 students with information on how to access the funds, if needed. 

Students will be given until August 10, 2020, to certify they have incurred expenses, related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, equal to or greater than the awarded amount. Once all certifications are received the University will disburse the remaining CARES Act HEERF Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.