2021 Commencement Information
Whittier College received $939,775 from the Student Aid Portion of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II). Emergency financial relief grants for students may be used for any component of the cost of attendance at Whittier College or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care) or child care. In accordance with federal guidelines, Whittier College certifies that it will distribute 100% of these funds under Section 314(a)(1) of the CRRSAA to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants directly to students with exceptional need.
The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) requires that institutions prioritize students with exceptional need, such as Pell Grant recipients. To be eligible for CRRSAA funds, students must:
According to current federal regulations, international and undocumented students are not eligible for CRRSAA funds. Ineligible students with emergency financial need are encouraged to explore Whittier College’s Emergency Funding and Assistance Programs.
Students recently selected to receive a 2021 Scott Scholarship were excluded from consideration in order to provide meaningful financial relief to the greatest number of students this Spring.
Grants will be awarded as follows:
Status & Expected Family Contribution ≤ $7,565
Maximum Grant Amount
Pell Grant Undergraduate Recipients
Students will be notified of their CRRSAA emergency relief grant to their poets.whittier.edu address. Students will be required to complete the HEERF II Response Form embedded in the email to accept the funds and choose the delivery method. Students will be given the option to apply their grant to any outstanding tuition balance.
The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) is federal legislation that provides wide ranging financial relief to individuals and organizations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The CRRSAA appropriated over $23 billion to the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) for institutions of higher education to serve students and ensure learning continues during the pandemic.
The CRRSAA requires institutions of higher education that received a Student Aid award from 2020 CARES Act funding provide the same amount of emergency financial relief to students from the new CRRSAA. Whittier College was allocated $939,775 for this purpose.
Students with exceptional need who meet the eligibility criteria will be directly notified by email sent to their poets.whittier.edu email address. The first round of notifications will be sent the week of February 22, 2021.
Students will be asked to choose the disbursement method they prefer. Whittier College offers three options:
Students must complete and return the CRRSAA Response Form by the deadline provided in the email to indicate their preference and provide affirmative consent. Failure to respond will result in the reallocation of funds to other students in need.
No, you are not required to repay any emergency relief provided through the CRRSAA.
No. This is an emergency grant to help you manage unexpected expenses related to the coronavirus, and it will not have any impact on other financial aid you may be eligible to receive.
You will have the option to authorize the College to apply your CRRSAA grant to your outstanding student account balance by completing the CRRSAA Response Form.
No, CRRSAA student relief grants, like the CARES Act grants which preceded them, are not subject to federal and state tax according to the IRS nor can they be claimed as a deduction or credit “for expenses paid with the grant including the tuition and fees deduction, the American Opportunity Credit, or the Lifetime Learning Credit.”
Questions about CRRSAA funding should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Student Emergency Relief Grants made possible through the 2020 CARES Act have been fully distributed. Support was offered for the following categories of expense:
This emergency student aid program was funded by a $939,775 grant from the U.S. Department of Education (PR/Award No. P425E202004). Whittier College acknowledges that it signed the Certification and Agreement and returned it to the Department of Education on April 13, 2020. The College further assures that of the total $1,879,550 received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act, no less than 50 percent ($939,775) will be used to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Whittier College students.
According to federal regulations, students enrolled in at least one face-to-face course during the 2020 spring semester were eligible for CARES Act funding if they completed a FAFSA application for 2019-2020 or 2020-2021; or
International and non-U.S.-citizen students that did not meet these requirements were not eligible for CARES Act funding but were invited to apply to the Whittier College Emergency Fund for financial assistance.
The application period is now closed.
The College conducted two rounds of funding from May 13 through June 3, 2020. The first round was conducted through direct outreach to students who received Pell grants for the 2019-2020 academic year in compliance with the Department of Education’s instruction to prioritize students with the greatest need. The second round was open to all eligible students. Applications were reviewed on a rolling basis. The College received 361 applications and awarded 352 grants totaling $182,824. Since the volume of requests was unpredictable, initial grants were capped at $575.
Round One (Pell recipients)
The application opened on May 13, 2020, and was due by May 20, 2020.
Round Two (All eligible students)
The application opened on May 27, 2020, and was due by June 3, 2020.
Round Three Funding
In order to equitably and expeditiously distribute the remaining CARES Act funds awarded to Whittier College as of July 1, 2020, Emergency Relief Grants were disbursed to all eligible students enrolled in Spring 2020 based on Pell status and Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as determined by the student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid form (FAFSA) according to the following five tiers.
EXPECTED FAMILY CONTRIBUTION
$0-$5,542 Pell Recipients
$0-$5,542 Non-Pell Recipients
Students who received a CARES Act Emergency Relief Grant in Round 1 or 2 received a second grant up to the new grant cap. For example, a student who received an initial grant of $575 and qualified for $800, received an additional $225 grant. Students who already received a CARES Act Emergency Relief Grant that exceeded the new grant cap did not receive additional funds.
Students who had previously established with Whittier College had their CARES Act Emergency Relief Grant automatically deposited to the bank account on file. All other students will received a check by mail.
Students with financial need who did not meet the federal requirements of the CARES Act, including international and undocumented students, were encouraged to explore Whittier College’s other emergency funding option.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is federal legislation that provides financial support to individuals and organizations affected by the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic.
The CARES Act includes a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) that provides more than $14 billion in emergency funding to higher education. Of those funds, more than $6 billion must go directly to students in the form of emergency financial aid grants (HEERF-student share) for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Whittier College will receive a total of $1,879,550 of which at least half ($939,775) must be provided directly to students for their expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, healthcare, and child care. The other half may be used by the College to cover costs associated with significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus.
Whittier College committed to equitably assist all eligible students financially impacted by the coronavirus pandemic to the greatest extent possible with the CARES Act funds available. First-time awards through the application process were based on actual financial need for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, healthcare, and child care, and were capped at $575.
After concluding the first two rounds, the College adopted a formula to disburse the remaining CARES Act funds based on Pell status and Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as determined by the student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid form (FAFSA).
Emergency relief funds will be directly deposited to student bank accounts already on file with Whittier College Payroll or listed on the Whittier CARES application form. The application form will be encrypted to protect your privacy. Checks will be mailed to students who are unable to receive direct deposit.
No, you are not required to repay any emergency relief provided through the CARES Act.
Any CARES Act funding awarded to you will be paid to you directly and will not be applied to outstanding student account balances owed to Whittier College. Any outstanding balance owed to Whittier College remains the responsibility of the student.
No, CARES Act student relief grants are not subject to federal and state tax according to the IRS nor can they be claimed as a deduction or credit “for expenses paid with the grant including the tuition and fees deduction, the American Opportunity Credit, or the Lifetime Learning Credit.”
Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act were disbursed to 1,418 students via direct deposit or check according to the student's preference.
Whittier College distributed $939,730 of the $939,775 allocated by the CARES Act in Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students through two rounds of the need-based application and one round of formula-based remittance.
Questions about CARES Act funding can be sent to email@example.com.