CRRSAA/HEERF II Emergency Student Grant

What is the CRRSAA, and how will it help students at W&J?

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA, Sections 314(a)(1) and (a)(4) of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021) was signed into law December 27, 2020.  The CRRSAA established additional funding for the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which allocated money to higher education institutions impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and provided CARES Act grants to students this past summer.  Washington & Jefferson College received $667,164 that must be made available directly to students as emergency grants for any component of students’ cost of attendance or emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus such as tuition, food, housing, health care and others not specifically identified here.

Who is eligible to receive CRRSAA Emergency Student Grant?

The CRRSAA allows for expanded uses of HEERF funds, and according to current federal policy, currently enrolled students, students on an approved leave of absence and students that have graduated at any time since the national emergency was declared on March 13, 2020 are eligible.  Students that have withdrawn or been academically dismissed from the College are not eligible to receive an emergency grant. Unlike CARES funds, CRRSAA HEERF funds do not relate to the disruption of campus operations due to Coronavirus.  Also, students do not need to meet Title IV eligibility and may grant the College permission to credit their emergency grant to their student account.   Students must be U.S. Citizens to qualify for a HEERF grant under the CRRSAA.

How do I apply for the CRRSAA Emergency Student Grant?

There is no formal application.

Do I have to complete the FAFSA in order to receive the CRRSAA Grant?

Under the expanded uses for the HEERF funds no FAFSA or Title IV eligibility is necessary to receive an emergency grant. Student must be U.S. Citizens to receive these funds and the College has verified citizenship with the Registrars Office for all eligible students.

How much will I receive from the CRRSAA Grant?

W&J has been allocated a limited amount of funds to distribute; the College’s goal is to assist as many eligible students as possible.  Eligible students will initially receive $400.

When will I receive the funds?

W&J will begin processing and mailing these checks March 12, 2021.

How will I receive the funds?

You have two options to receive your funds.

Option 1: Complete this form no later than 5 PM EST on Monday, March 8, 2021 to provide consent to have your emergency grant credited to your student account balance.

Option 2: W&J will mail a check to the permanent home address on file if no form is received.

Will I have to repay the CRRSAA Grant that I receive?

No, these funds are to assist you and are considered a grant and do not have to be repaid.

Will these funds affect any current or future financial aid eligibility?

No, your CRRSAA grant is specifically intended to help with expenses related to your cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to Coronavirus.  The funds will not have any impact on current financial aid or future financial aid.

What kinds of expenses can be covered by the CRRSAA Grant for students?

Students may use the emergency financial aid grant toward any component of their cost of attendance, such as tuition and fees, books, room and board, and transportation.  In addition, funds may be used for emergency costs that may arise due to Coronavirus including by not limited to:

  • Food
  • Housing
  • Healthcare (including Mental Health)
  • Childcare
What can I do if I have exceptional financial need beyond the initial amount of CRRSAA Grant that W&J has provided me?

The college has established a process by which students who identify as having exceptional financial need can appeal for additional CRRSAA funding.  A limited amount of money has been set aside for successful appeals.  To appeal for additional funds, please complete this application. The application will be available March 13 – March 26, 2021.  Students will be notified of the outcome of this appeal 2 weeks after the deadline of March 26 via their W&J email address.  These funds will be granted on a first-come first-serve basis.

Is there a deadline to appeal for additional CRRSAA funding?

Applications will be accepted through March 26, 2021 at 5 PM EST.  However, these funds will be granted on a first-come first-serve basis.

Can I submit more than one application?

No, students should submit only one application.

Is the CRRSAA Grant taxable?

No, the CRRSAA Grant is not considered to be taxable income.  Please note, these funds will be reported on your 2021 1098T.

If I have an outstanding balance, will my CRRSAA Grant be applied directly to my student account?

You may provide the College your written consent to credit your CRRSAA emergency grant directly to your student account. To do so, complete this form no later than 5 PM EST on Monday, March 8, 2021.  If you do not complete this form, your emergency grant will be mailed to your home address beginning March 12, 2021.

Do I need to submit receipts or document how I spent my grant?

No, students may want to retain documentation for tax purposes, but will not be asked to submit receipts documenting their expenses to W&J.

Will receiving the CRRSAA Grant impact my NCAA eligibility?

CRRSAA funds do not adversely affect NCAA eligibility.  Student athletes and non-athletes are encouraged to appeal for additional funding if they believe they have exceptional financial need.

What if I am experiencing reduced income due to income loss for the 2021-2022 academic year?

Complete the 2021-2022 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) using 2019 income (as required).  If you and/or your family has a special circumstance resulting from COVID-19, such as a loss in income, please email finaid@washjeff.edu or call 724-223-6019 for opportunities to review your aid.

Who should I contact if I have questions?

If you have questions about the CRRSAA or your appeal, please email finaid@washjeff.edu.  We appreciate your patience as we work quickly to provide you with CRRSAA funding.