CARES Act Funding

Mount Holyoke College signed and returned to the Department of Education on June 9, 2020, the Certification and Agreement with intention to use no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students. Mount Holyoke College was awarded its CARES ACT HEERF Student Allocation on June 18, 2020.

Mount Holyoke College signed and returned to the Department of Education on June 8, 2020, the Certification and Agreement for the Institutional Portion of the HEERF in acknowledgment that the funds shall be used solely for purposes authorized in Section 18004(c) of the CARES Act. Mount Holyoke College was awarded its CARES ACT HEERF Institutional Portion on June 9, 2020.

Mount Holyoke College received $794,402 from the Department of Education pursuant to the Institutions Certificate and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid to Students. 

Mount Holyoke College received $794,401 from the Department of Education pursuant to the Institutions Certificate and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid to the Institution. 

The total amount of funds that Mount Holyoke College has received from the Department of Education is $1,588,803.

The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES ACT is $794,402, as of December 31, 2020.

In 2019-20, 1,333 students at the College submitted the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and were therefore eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

Eight hundred fifty two students (852) have received Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

In determining the methods used by Mount Holyoke College to determine which students would receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act, the College elected to award the funding in multiple phases. In Phase 1, students received block grants ranging from $200-$1,200 who:

  • Were enrolled in classes on March 27, 2020.
  • Had submitted a FAFSA.
  • Had institutionally determined annualized family contributions under $35,001.
  • Had received institutional grant funding. 

Students with the lower family contributions received higher awards.

Phase 2 funds were awarded based on a brief application from the student attesting to the eligibility for the grant and that the student had expenses related to campus disruption due to COVID-19.

A notice was posted about CARES Act grants, including an FAQ about Phase 1 and Phase 2 grant funding. Emails were sent to individual students who were receiving the Phase 1 block grants, with a followup email from a vendor partner who was distributing the grants. For Phase 2, a notice was sent to all students that the application is open, how long the application would be open, and how much was remaining in funding. Grants of between $50 to $200 were distributed in Phase 2, depending on the request. Phase 3 funds were reimbursed to the College for payments distributed directly to eligible students who had requested emergency funds from the College's Safety Net fund. Qualifying payments occurred after March 27, 2020, to students who were enrolled in classes in the Spring 2020 semester and had submitted a FAFSA.

The Quarterly Budget and Expenditure Report per CARES Act Sections 18004(a)(1) Institutional Portion, 18004(a)(2), and 18004(a)(3) (as applicable) is available in PDF format.  

The final Quarterly Budget and Expenditure Report per CARES Act Sections 18004(a)(1) Institutional Portion, 18004(a)(2), and 18004(a)(3) (as applicable) is available in PDF format.

The April 2021 Quarterly Budget and Expenditure Report per CARES Act Sections 18004(a)(1) Institutional Portion, 18004(a)(2), and 18004(a)(3) (as applicable) is available in PDF format. 

There are no additional updates to the use of the CARES Act funds since the last posted update on January 10, 2021.

Spring 21 Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund 2

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) provides additional emergency funds to colleges and universities, including Mount Holyoke, to support students whose lives and education have been impacted by the pandemic. This federal funding is designed to assist higher-need, Title IV eligible students (students eligible to apply for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid) who need support for the cost of attendance or for emergency costs that have arisen due to COVID, such as tuition, food, housing, health care, child care or other emergencies.

The College has also created the MHC Cares grants, which is a matching fund to assist international and DACA/undocumented students who are not eligible for the federal funds provided through CRRSAA. This funding is also designed to assist higher-need students who need support for the cost of attendance or for emergency costs that have arisen due to COVID, such as tuition, food, housing, health care, child care or other emergencies.

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) is authorized by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Public Law 116-260, signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. Mount Holyoke has received $2,374,484 in total funds. Of the $794,402 designated for student grants, $773,500 was distributed as block grants ranging from $200-$1,500 to undergraduate students who:

  • Were enrolled in classes on March 12, 2021
  • Had submitted a FAFSA for the 2020-21 award year
  • Had institutionally determined annualized family contributions under $30,001.
  • Had received institutional grant funding.
  • Undergraduate students with the lower family contributions received higher awards.

In addition, $21,500 was distributed as grants of $350 to graduate students enrolled in the spring semester who had submitted FAFSAs by March 1.

Emails were sent to individual students who were receiving the HEERF II block grants.

Please note: this does not replace the student safety net funding that has been supported by gifts and restricted funds and is available to any Mount Holyoke student via an application process. This emergency funding was made available due to the generous donations of alums, families, friends and the Student Government Association.

If you have any questions or need further clarification on this funding, please email sfs@mtholyoke.edu.