ARP/HEERF III Emergency Student Grant Information FAQs

What is the American Rescue Plan, and how will it help students at W&J?

The American Rescue Plan (ARP) was signed into law on March 11, 2021. The Plan 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 and CRRSAA grants to students throughout the national emergency. Washington & Jefferson College received $1,712,147 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 an ARP Emergency Student Grant?

The ARP allows for expanded uses of HEERF funds. According to current federal policy, any student who is or was enrolled at W&J on or after March 13, 2020, the date of the national emergency declaration, is eligible for funding. Therefore, international students, students who have stopped out, or students that have withdrawn are eligible for emergency grants under the ARP.

How do I apply for the ARP Emergency Student Grant?

There is no application or action needed to receive an emergency grant. All eligible students will receive an email notifying them of their eligibility for funding.

Do I have to complete the FAFSA to receive the ARP Grant?

No, under the expanded uses for the HEERF funds, no FAFSA or Title IV eligibility is necessary to receive an emergency grant.

How much will I receive from the ARP 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 $600.

When will I receive the funds?

W&J will begin processing and mailing these checks on July 23, 2021.

How will I receive the funds?

You have two options to receive your funds:

Option 1: Take no action, and W&J will mail a check to the permanent home address on file if no form is received.

Option 2: Complete this form no later than 5 PM EST on Tuesday, July 20, 2021, to provide consent to have your emergency grant credited to your student account balance. Funds will be credited towards any past balances that exist or Fall 2021 charges.

Will I have to repay the ARP 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 ARP 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 ARP 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 ARP Grant that W&J has provided me?

For those students who self-identify as exceptionally needy, an appeals process will be made available in October; more information will be provided during the Fall 2021 semester.  Be sure to monitor campus announcements, your My W&J and student email account, and the College’s emergency grant FAQ page for more information.

Is the ARP Grant taxable?

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

Can I use my ARP Grant to pay for my Fall 2021 charges?

Yes, you may provide the College your written consent to credit your ARP emergency grant directly to your student account. Complete this form no later than 5 PM EST on Tuesday, July 20, 2021, to provide consent to have your emergency grant credited to your student account balance.

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

Yes, you may provide the College your written consent to credit your ARP emergency grant directly to your student account. Complete this form no later than 5 PM EST on Tuesday, July 20, 2021, to provide consent to have your emergency grant credited to your student account balance.

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 ARP Grant impact my NCAA eligibility?

ARP funds do not adversely affect NCAA eligibility.

What if my family is experiencing reduced income due or 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 ARP or your appeal, please email finaid@washjeff.edu.  We appreciate your patience as we work quickly to provide you with ARP funding.