The university announced this afternoon how it would distribute its allocated $2.1 million of emergency grant funding from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund to students. The aim of the CARES Act federal relief money is to help students with expenses related to campus disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the university email, each student eligible for the Title IV financial aid will receive $400 and can apply for more through an application. Guidelines are still being outlined for this eligibility by the Department of Education and more details will be released in the coming weeks, according to the email.
“The university will disburse the funds directly to the eligible students once guidelines are confirmed,” stated the email. “Bradley will also have additional grant funds available for eligible students based on extraordinary expenses related to the disruption of campus operations.”
Eligible students do not need to spend the money on education-related costs.
“I am going to buy my house groceries and save the rest to do another study abroad since I couldn’t go this May,” junior management and leadership major Arlee O’Shaughnessy said.
Universities are able to choose how they distribute the funding to students; however, international students and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) are not eligible to receive aid per the Department of Education’s guidelines.
The Department of Education also outlined that the relief fund “must remain unencumbered by the institution,” meaning that it cannot be applied to shares, debt, fees or other amounts students owe to the university.
The amount of funding allocated to each institution was based on factors like the number of students enrolled as Pell Grant recipients and the percent of the institution’s full-time, non-remote students. Illinois Central College received $1.8 million and Illinois State University received $8 million from the relief fund.
While Bradley was approved for the Higher Education Relief Fund for students, it has also applied as a university and is currently awaiting approval for an additional $2.1 million to aid with operating costs impacted by COVID-19. Earlier this month, president Gary Roberts announced the university would need to prepare to cut $40 million from the budget as a result of the pandemic.