COVID-19 Reporting Requirement

U.S. Department of Education – 30-day Reporting Requirement

Nicholls signed the funding certification and agreement for the Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on April 14, 2020 and plans to use the funds to provide the mandated amount of at least 50% of the emergency financial aid grants to students.

  • Nicholls will use $2,528,760 (50%) of the total Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) dollars allocated to the university for emergency student aid.
  • There are an estimated 4,283 students who attended classes during the spring 2020 semester that are or could be eligible for CARES Act funding. These students have met the requirements for federal aid under Section 484 in the Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and are not enrolled in an exclusively online program.
  • As of July 2, 2020, $2,220,087 has been distributed to 4,283 students.
  • All eligible students were awarded CARES Act funding. On-campus residents were awarded $850 and commuting students were awarded $400.

Eligible students are defined as:

  • Be currently enrolled in a degree program
  • Be a citizen or eligible noncitizen
  • Be making satisfactory academic progress
  • Not be in default or overpayment status on federal aid
  • Not have a federal or state conviction for drug possession or sale
  • Resolved any outstanding requirements related to the student’s identity, educational purpose, selective service registration, birth certificate or social security card

The language of the law specifically prohibits the following types of students from receiving the emergency grants:

  • International and undocumented students
  • Dual enrollment students
  • Students enrolled through Nicholls Online

The following email was sent to students prior to awarding the funds:

 

Good evening,

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress to assist students during these very uncertain times. Though Nicholls has not received the funds from the federal government just yet, we have started working through the process to get the money into your hands quickly.

The hardships presented by this global crisis continue to be felt deeply by our students, their families and many others in our community. The federal assistance through the CARES Act enables us to help address those hardships across our community, with an emphasis on students and families who are in financial distress. As we continue to navigate this pandemic, the wellbeing of our students will continue to be a priority for us.

While we have taken into account the economic and job situation of the region and state, the CARES Act provides emergency financial aid grants to students to cover expenses reasonably linked to significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus.

The Department of Education has provided guidance on who may qualify to receive these funds. Students must have a valid 2019-2020 FAFSA on file with Nicholls before May 15, 2020. To qualify, students must be eligible to receive Federal Title IV assistance. These qualifications include that a student must:
• Be currently enrolled in a degree program
• Be a citizen or eligible noncitizen
• Be making satisfactory academic progress
• Not be in default or overpayment status on federal aid
• Not have a federal or state conviction for drug possession or sale
• Resolved any outstanding requirements related to your identity, educational purpose, selective service registration, birth certificate or social security card

The language of the law specifically prohibits the following types of students from receiving the emergency grants:
• International and undocumented students
• Dual enrollment students
• Students enrolled through Nicholls Online

Students who meet the qualifications will be eligible to receive $400. In addition, on campus residents will receive an additional $450 to help cover expenses due to the disruption of housing operations. If you meet the eligibility requirements, the grant will be fully disbursed to you. An additional portion of the CARES Act funds will be used for extraordinary circumstances. An application for these additional funds will be available early next week on the Financial Aid website.

We understand that this crisis has impacted all of you and are sensitive to the fact that each of our students have different economic realities today. We hope these funds will help during these extraordinarily difficult times.

Bests,

Alex Arceneaux, PhD
Executive Vice President
Enrollment and External Affairs
Nicholls State University
P.O. Box 2001
Thibodaux, LA 70310
Tel: 985.448.4001
Fax: 985.448.4920

Upon receipt of funding from the Department of Education, Nicholls applied funds to student accounts and refunded the grants.