As part of the CARES Act, the US Department of Education (ED) recently authorized more than $7 billion of emergency funding to colleges and universities across the United States. Wittenberg University signed and returned the certification and agreement form to the US Department of Education to receive funds from the CARES Act. Wittenberg University has been allocated $1,728,770 in funding and 50% of that funding was earmarked for immediate student distribution.
This funding, based on federal guidelines, was provided to students who are eligible for Title IV federal financial aid as defined by the FAFSA. The funding was provided to offset any costs that students may have incurred in the new learning environment. The formula ED used to determine the funds available for Wittenberg students was based on the number of Pell-eligible students enrolled and our total enrollment. The CARES Act and ED’s guidance ask us to distribute funds to those most in need and use Pell-eligibility as one measure of that. Students were awarded CARES Act funds based on the following award structure:
Full-time, Pell-eligible - $1,009
Full-time, not Pell-eligible - $504
Part-time, Pell-eligible - $335
Part-time, not Pell-eligible - $167
Eligible based on program - $150
During our assessment of student eligibility, we determined that 1,296 currently enrolled Wittenberg students met the criteria set by ED. The following metrics were used to determine student eligibility:
Students must have:
- filed a FAFSA before March 16, 2020,
- been enrolled for the current semester as of April 27, 2020, and
- been determined to have Federal Title IV aid eligibility.
Wittenberg disbursed $864,385 to the 1,296 eligible students on April 27, 2020. The CARES Act funds were disbursed to students via the refund preference they had selected through BankMobile on their Wittenberg OneCard. No funds were set aside for future use.