In addition to student grant funds received through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) of 2020, the Pentecostal Theological Seminary also received additional funding through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA) and American Rescue Plan Act, 2021 (ARP). A portion of these funds was designated for students at the Seminary through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF).
PTS signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement agreeing to use these funds as stipulated by the Department, which was specifically for student grants. The Seminary received $7,218 through the CRRSAA and an additional $24,182 through the ARP, for a total of $31,400 of additional HEERF funding.
Because of the limited number of funds and the restriction of these funds, such as prioritizing students with exceptional need, Seminary administration determined it best to develop an application to allow students to apply for the grant. Applications were sent to all students via email to complete online. Students were given over two weeks to submit the application, with several reminder emails and texts to students who had not applied during this time period. Of the total 232 students emailed, 77 students applied by submitting the application. These applications, which included a narrative from the students detailing their impact from the pandemic, were reviewed in conjunction with the student’s EFC (if applicable).
Students were grouped into two categories based upon their own acknowledgement of significant, minor or no COVID related expenses as outlined in the CRRSAA and ARP and other applicable information. Students who reported no additional expenditures were not included in the final disbursement. The funds from CRRSAA and ARP were combined, and funds were distributed evenly between the students who reported significant COVID related expenses and a lesser equal amount to those who reported minor COVID related expenses.
There were a total of 31 students who qualified and reported significant expenses. These students received $850. Students who qualified and reported minor expenses totaled 11 students and received a total grant of $459. These funds were sent directly to the students via either checks or Automated Clearing House (ACH) if the student provided information.
The students who were awarded grants were sent an award letter with information related to how these funds were to be spent and what expenditures qualified for usage along with the applicable disbursement information.
As of May 20, 2021, all funds from CRRSAA and ARP have been distributed to students.
On March 27, 2020, President Donald Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) into the law. Section 18004 (a) (1) of the Act included the establishment of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) for students enrolled in higher education institutions. The HEERF was designed for students who experienced disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Act specified that these funds were to be used only for students who were enrolled in at least one on-campus course and were classified as “eligible” to participate in the federal loan program under Section 484 Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965.
PTS applied for HEERF funding by signing the Certification and Agreement with the Department of Education agreeing to release these funds to students directly. The Seminary received a total of $7,218 to be awarded to our students who met the eligibility requirements. The institution reviewed all PTS students determining which students were enrolled with at least one on-campus course during Spring Semester 2020 as of March 13, 2020 with Title IV eligibility. It was determined that there were 24 students who met the eligibility requirements.
All students who met the eligibility requirements were emailed the PTS HEERF Grant Application. Students were given over a week and a half to submit the application, with several reminder emails and texts to students who had not applied during this time period. Of the 24 eligible students, 12 students applied by submitting the application.
Awards were made based upon applications submitted. To qualify for the award, students had to indicate they incurred some expenses related to the disruption. Priority was given to the students who had indicated they incurred significant expenses over minor expenses. All students who submitted an application and noted they had some expenditures related to the disruption received funds from the allocated amount.
The students were categorized depending upon their need as indicated on the application. The funds were then evenly distributed to the students within each category with the students showing a greater need receiving more funds than the students who noted a lesser impact. The students were told these funds were to be used to help cover additional expenses incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of May 27, 2020 all funds have been distributed to students.