UCF sent an email to students April 1 with a link to the application. Applicants must meet eligibility criteria. Assistance is subject to the availability of funds, and a second application opened in April due to a surplus of funds following the first application period in February.
How much CARES Act funding did UCF award?
UCF will award more than $3.5 million to the more than 3,800 students who met eligibility criteria and completed the second application for the CARES Act.
This brings UCF’s total of CARES Act awards to more than $20.3 million to 23,328 eligible students, with additional disbursements of awards expected to go to eligible students in the coming weeks, exhausting the federal aid.
What will UCF do with leftover federal funds?
UCF’s total CARES Act awards totaled more than $20.3 million and were distributed to 23,328 eligible students. Additional disbursements of awards are expected to go to eligible students in the coming weeks, exhausting the federal aid.
How did UCF make decisions about disbursement of funds?
The university followed guidance from the U.S. Department of Education and prioritized assistance to eligible students with the most urgent needs, providing up to 75 percent of the available funds for grants to Pell-eligible students, with the balance to non-Pell-eligible students.
Students whose education has been disrupted due to COVID-19 were given the opportunity to receive this funding by outlining the different areas (housing, food insecurity, utilities, etc.) for which they were experiencing financial impacts caused by COVID-19, and when possible, UCF worked to provide funding in the amount requested.
I received CARES Act funds. When and how will I receive the money?
Students who have direct deposit associated with myUCF will receive their funding directly into that account. Only U.S bank accounts can be used for direct deposit, and some banks take longer to process payments.
Students without direct deposit will be mailed a paper check to the home address on record with the university. The home address in myUCF must be a residential U.S. address.
How did UCF develop eligibility criteria?
The amount I received is not enough to cover my needs. Will additional funding be available?
I didn’t receive CARES Act funds. How can I appeal?
My email indicated other possible assistance and alternative funding sources to support students who were ineligible to receive CARES Act aid. Where can I find more information about other possible options?
If you were ineligible to receive CARES Act funds or have received Cares Act funds, but are still experiencing financial distress, you can reach out to Student Care Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-823-5607 to discuss and explore additional resources that may be available.
I was notified that I’m ineligible to receive CARES funds. Why?
Eligibility for CARES funds was extended to undergraduate, graduate and medical degree-seeking students who had submitted a 2019-2020 FAFSA by May 19, the date the CARES Act application closed. Students must also have met federal aid eligibility criteria, including but not limited to:
- Being a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen (i.e. permanent resident or conditional permanent resident)
- Having a valid Social Security number
- Having a high school diploma, GED or completion of high school in an approved homeschool setting
- Being degree-seeking
- Must be enrolled in the term for which they are seeking assistance
- Cannot be in default on federal student loans
- Being registered with Selective Service, if male
- Meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress
- Cannot exceed aggregate loan limit or Pell Grant lifetime usage
- Cannot owe an overpayment on federal aid programs
Additionally, UCF Online students were not eligible.
Am I eligible for HEERF awards?
Undergraduate, graduate and medical degree-seeking students are eligible. Recent update to the federal guidelines now allow many of our non-degree seeking to now be eligible. Non-degree students in Continuing Education programs are not eligible. Students must have submitted a 2020-2021 FAFSA or must submit an error-free FAFSA application by the application deadline in order to be eligible for the funding.
- Students must also be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen (i.e. permanent resident or conditional permanent resident).
- Students must be enrolled in the term for which they are seeking assistance
Funding is limited. For students who are not eligible for HEERF funding, UCF will evaluate applications to determine whether other forms of assistance may apply.
How can I help or donate additional funds to support students?
If you’re among those in a position to help UCF students who are struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic, pledge your support through the university’s relief fund.
How long before I know if I’m awarded HEERF funds?
We expect to award the funds to students in late April.
How much money will I get?
The maximum HEERF award is $1,000. Students who already received the maximum $1,000 HEERF award in March will not receive an additional award.
Pell-eligible students who have not received CARES or HEERF funding will be prioritized. Non-Pell eligible students who did not receive CARES or HEERF funding will be the next priority group, followed by students who did not receive funding from the first HEERF round and received less than the maximum CARES award. Awards will be made based on additional criteria until the funds are exhausted.
I am a DACA or international student. What resources are available to help me?
The federal legislation, not UCF, outlined eligibility criteria. The federal funding is designed to assist students who meet eligibility criteria and who had their face-to-face instruction impacted by COVID-19.
Students who do not meet the eligibility requirements for HEERF funding are encouraged to contact Student Care Services to discuss eligibility for Student Emergency funds by emailing email@example.com.
I am continuing to experience financial distress. Are there any other funding options available?
I am not eligible for HEERF funds. What other resources are available for me?
I graduated in 2020. Can I still receive HEERF funding?
No. You must be enrolled in Spring 2021 to be eligible.
I have a student who needs financial help. Where do I refer them to?
I have experienced significant changes in income (due to unemployment, reduced work hours, divorce, death of parent or spouse) that were not captured in the 2020-2021 FAFSA. Can my FAFSA be reviewed to take these into consideration?
Students can contact Financial Aid by emailing sfaSAPandPJ@ucf.edu. They should include “Professional Judgment” in the subject line and provide a detailed explanation of their special circumstance. Please allow 3 to 5 business days for a response. Please be aware that an approved appeal does not guarantee additional funding will be awarded. All funding is contingent upon eligibility and availability of funds.
If I applied for support from UCF’s Student Emergency Fund, can I still receive a HEERF award?
Yes, students may be eligible for both forms of support. Those who have applied for the Student Emergency Fund are encouraged to also apply for HEERF funding.
Is this funding a loan that will need to be repaid?
No, the money is a federal emergency grant that is not required to be repaid.
What are the types of expenses covered by HEERF funding?
Student emergency grants can be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance (COA) or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, healthcare (including mental healthcare) or child care.
What if I haven’t submitted a FAFSA for 2020-21?
Students may still be eligible for HEERF funding but must submit a 2020-21 FAFSA application. We recommend these students apply for HEERF funding and fill out a 2020-21 FAFSA application, which takes the Department of Education 48 to 72 hours to process.
What types of assistance can Student Care Services offer?
Students who are ineligible for HEERF funds and are experiencing financial crisis may contact Student Care Services to be screened for additional support. Be advised that some resources will not become available until all other avenues of financial assistance have been exhausted. If you are unsure of your current financial aid options, please contact Student Financial Assistance to confirm if you have aid available.
Students who receive HEERF funds may reach out to Student Care Services for screening for additional emergency funds if still they are experiencing a financial crisis such as pending eviction, food insecurity, or homelessness.
Student Care Services: firstname.lastname@example.org