CARES Act

CARES Act

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)

Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students

A Message from the CSUDH Administration

Dear Campus Community,

The COVID-19 crisis has affected not only the health and safety of our nation, but also placed a financial strain on it as well. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act passed by Congress in March 2020 has sought to protect the financial welfare of the American people and our economy.

A provision of the CARES Act, the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) specifically provides money to universities to assist with COVID-19-related expense and give direct aid to students most in need during this difficult time. CSUDH received approximately $53.6 million of emergency stimulus funds through HEERF, of which $18.5 million is to go to students.

Working with campus administration, the CSUDH Financial Aid Office carefully reviewed all eligible students in accordance with the guidelines established by the CARES Act. A tiered funding model was created that attends to our most needy students while ensuring some level of relief for everyone.

Recognizing that the CARES Act excludes undocumented and international students from eligibility, CSUDH has identified separate, non-federal dollars to support those students during this time.

The majority of HEERF I funds was disbursed to students during May 2020, with additional disbursements processed during November 2020. Disbursement of HEERF II funds to eligible students began the week of April 12, 2021, and may take up to two weeks. Students may check their status by logging into their Student Center portal. For more information about the CARES Act emergency relief fund for students, including how much CSUDH students can expect to receive, please review the Frequently Asked Questions section below.

Our hope is that these emergency funds will help our Toro students continue their progress toward earning degrees.

Read CSUDH CARES Act Reports:

See the HEERF Institutional Funding Reports here.


Frequently Asked Questions for CARES Act

  • What is the CARES Act and CRRSAA?

    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a federal economic relief package signed into law by U.S. President Donald Trump on March 27, 2020 to provide economic assistance throughout the country during the coronavirus pandemic. The law appropriates about $14 billion for higher education (Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, a.k.a. HEERF), with about $12.5 billion to be split between emergency grants to students and money for schools' needs amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) is authorized by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Public Law 116-260, signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. In total, the CRRSAA authorizes $81.88 billion in support for education.

  • What are the HEERF emergency grants?

    The CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund-IHE/Student Aid provides funding to institutions to provide emergency financial aid grants to students whose lives have been disrupted, many of whom are facing financial challenges and struggling to make ends meet.

    The HEERF emergency grants are funds that will be disbursed to students as relief for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations caused by the coronavirus pandemic. This includes expenses like course materials, technology, housing, food, health care, and childcare.

  • Do I need to apply to receive an emergency grant?

    No, students do not need to apply for an emergency grant. Funds will be disbursed automatically for students who qualify, through direct deposit or by mail. If you choose to receive a paper check, you must ensure that the mailing address on your student account is accurate and complete.

    A note about direct deposit:

    Please be advised that the Student Financial Services department does not have access to review direct deposit bank information, and will not be able to verify related information. If you are unsure about the validity of the bank account used for direct deposit purposes, it is recommended that you disable this feature online by selecting the "Withdraw from Direct Deposit" feature in this portal. Any refunds due to students will be mailed by check if the direct deposit feature is disabled.

    Student Financial Services questions other than verifying bank account information may be directed to sfs@csudh.edu.

    If you are a recipient of phishing information, please contact Information Technology at ISO@csudh.edu.

  • Who qualifies for a grant?

    Any student who qualifies as Title IV eligible and is currently enrolled in a degree-seeking program for Spring 2021 will receive a HEERF Emergency Grant.

    Undergraduate and postgraduate students, including doctorate and masters' students, are eligible.

    The U.S. Department of Education excludes undocumented and international students from eligibility. Some undocumented and international students will receive grants from different CSUDH funds.

  • Who qualifies as Title IV eligible?

    Any student who is eligible to fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and is eligible for federal financial aid is Title IV eligible. Federal financial aid funds including the Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and Direct Loans fall under Title IV according to the U.S. Department of Education.

  • Do I need to submit the FAFSA to receive a grant?

    Yes, to be eligible to receive a CARES Emergency Grant, you will need to submit the 2020-2021 FAFSA to demonstrate you are eligible for Title IV federal student aid. The 2020-2021 FAFSA filing deadline is June 30, 2021 (11:59 p.m. Central Time).

  • When will grants be disbursed?

    The majority of CARES Act (HEERF I) funds were disbursed to students during May 2020, with additional disbursements processed during November 2020. Disbursement of HEERF II funds to eligible students began the week of April 12, 2021. Students may check their status by logging into the Student Portal. Disbursement may take at least two weeks.

  • How much will I receive?

    Students determined to be of the highest financial need through FAFSA will receive the highest grant amount.

    Students with the highest financial need who are eligible for the Federal Pell Grant will receive $965.00 for full-time enrollment, and $482.00 for half-time enrollment. There are 9,526 students determined to be Federal Pell Eligible according to the Financial Aid Office.

    Students who are eligible for financial aid but are not eligible for the Pell Grant will receive $400.00 for full-time enrollment and $200.00 for less than full-time enrollment. This represents 3,535 students.

  • How did CSUDH determine my eligibility?

    Working with campus administration, the CSUDH Financial Aid Office carefully reviewed all eligible students in accordance with the guidelines as established by the CARES Act. A tiered funding model was created that attends to our most needy students while ensuring some level of relief for everyone. The funding model was reviewed and approved by the appropriate administrators to ensure that the calculations were as accurate as possible.

  • Where does the money come from?

    CSUDH received over $53.6 million of emergency stimulus funds through HEERF as of April 15, 2021, of which $18.5 million is to go to students.

  • Can the school use the money to pay for outstanding student fees?

    HEERF funds may be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care) or childcare. Students may use their HEERF grant funds to pay for tuition. The money may not be used for athletics, religious purposes, or scholarships, either.

  • Is the HEERF emergency grant the same as the CSUDH Emergency Grant for students?

    No, the emergency financial aid grants from the CARES Act are not the same as the Emergency Grant funds offered by CSUDH. The Emergency Grant is a separate grant administered by the Division of Student Affairs that assists students experiencing a one-term financial crisis due to unexpected expenses.

    Funding for this grant program is made possible by the generous donations from CSUDH faculty, staff, alumni, students, and community members to assist students with unexpected expenses that could lead to withdrawal from the semester. The minimum grant is $250 and can be approved up to $1,000. Students may be awarded no more than one grant per academic year.

    To be considered for the Emergency Grant, complete an application and submit supporting documentation by email to iheart@csudh.edu.

  • What if I am in a crisis and need more aid?

    Please refer to the CSUDH Basic Needs website and the CSUDH Financial Aid website.

  • What if I don't qualify for an emergency financial aid grant?

    CSUDH has set up a different fund (non-federal or CARES Act) for students who don't qualify for federal financial aid or the emergency financial aid grants. The fund will include those who file for the California Dream Act and international students.

    CSUDH Dreamers with the highest financial need will receive $250 for full-time enrollment and $100-$125 for less than full-time enrollment. There were 526 students identified in this category. 142 international students will receive an emergency grant amount of $200.

  • Who can I contact on the campus if I have a question regarding the emergency financial aid grant?

    For assistance, please contact the Financial Aid Office at finaid@csudh.edu or 310-243-3691. Please provide your first and last name, CSUDH ID number, phone number, and your questions in your email.

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