In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, The University of Tampa was allocated $6.94 million in federal aid, half of which is required to be used for emergency student relief. The remaining half of the grant is to be used to partially offset institutional pandemic-related costs.
The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, provided nearly $14 billion to support students and institutions of higher education.
According to federal guidelines, half of the UT grant – $3.47 million – is intended to assist students with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child care.
Eligible UT students will receive varying amounts, with the majority of funds being granted to students who displayed exceptional financial need, and are Pell Grant-eligible. Checks are expected to be distributed by the UT Bursar’s office over the next few weeks.
Under the guidelines from the federal government, and to determine eligibility, UT considered only students who filed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students who did not file the FAFSA in 2019-2020 were not considered. More than 6,000 students – almost two-thirds of UT’s student population (including graduate, undergraduate, full-time and part-time students) – will receive grants. Other eligibility requirements to receive funding included a number of items, such as U.S. citizenship, a valid social security number, selective service registration for male students, not having a federal or state conviction for drug possession or sale, and a high school diploma, or proof of completion.
The federal government requires that UT award the full amount of the grant directly to students. As such, students will receive a check even if they have a balance due to UT.
“The CARES Act is welcomed funding for those students who suffered unexpected financial hardships due to the COVID-19 crisis,” said Jackie LaTorella, UT’s director of financial aid. At UT 92% of students receive financial aid, and about $80 million comes directly from UT institutional aid.
The UT Financial Aid Office will send an email notification to all students who will receive funding from the CARES Act Emergency Grants for Students.
For more information about UT’s response to COVID-19, see www.ut.edu/coronavirus.
The University of Tampa is a private, comprehensive university located on 110 acres on the riverfront in downtown Tampa. Known for academic excellence, personal attention and real-world experience in its undergraduate and graduate programs, the University serves approximately 10,000 students from 50 states and about 130 countries.