We hope that you and your family are staying safe and well, and that you are wrapping up the end of this challenging semester with pride in your resilience during such unprecedented times.
As we’ve previously announced, MMC has been granted federal stimulus funding under the CARES Act through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund. MMC is set to receive a total of just over $1.7 million through this grant, 50% of which—$850,721—is earmarked specifically for students to mitigate some of the financial hardship students and families are facing in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Federal guidelines require that this money be distributed to our neediest (Pell-eligible) students and to students who are eligible for federal financial aid under Title IV regulations.
After signing and returning the grant agreement, the College received the first half of this grant, and President Kerry Walk established a task force, which has been diligently determining student eligibility and developing procedures for distributing the funding to eligible students.
The CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provides funding to institutions to provide emergency financial aid grants to students whose lives have been disrupted by COVID-19, many of whom are facing financial challenges and are struggling to make ends meet. Eligible expenses may include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care.
All full-time, Pell-eligible students enrolled in the Spring 2020 semester will receive a one-time grant of $750. These funds will begin to be distributed on Thursday, May 21, 2020. All other Spring 2020 full-time, Title IV-eligible students who have filed a FAFSA will receive a pro-rated grant, based on need as determined by the FAFSA, of between $350 and $600. Grants to part-time students will be pro-rated based on enrolled credits. These funds will be distributed by the end of May.
Recipients will be notified of their eligibility and award amount via a message to their MMC email account. Students who are potentially eligible for CARES Act funds but who have not yet completed a FAFSA will be contacted by the Center for Student Services (CSS).
Students are strongly encouraged to enroll in direct deposit to receive CARES Act funds quickly and securely. Eligible students who have not yet signed up for direct deposit will receive a follow-up email with instructions on how to do so, and students who do not or cannot sign up for direct deposit will receive a paper check to their mailing address on file in MMC Connect.
These past few months have been exceptionally difficult for all of us, and we recognize the considerable stress and anxiety that so many of our students continue to experience. We hope that these emergency aid grants, while limited in scope, will provide some assistance and relief.
Even as the semester draws to a close, we want to remind you that we are here to support you. To begin, we have developed a list of frequently asked questions and answers about the CARES Act funds, available here for your review. If you have additional questions after reviewing the FAQ, please send an email to CARESAct@mmm.edu and a member of the Center for Student Services will contact you as soon as possible. Please continue to monitor your MMC email and our COVID-19 webpages for updates and resources as they become available.
Carol L. Jackson, Ph.D.