Athens State University is set to begin distributing Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) grant funds for the Fall semester. The distributions will account for 40% of the remaining funds awarded to the University ($623,424), while the remaining 60% will be disbursed in the spring ($935,136).
The funds will be available to every currently-enrolled Athens State student. While students with exceptional financial need will be prioritized, each student will receive a minimum of $100 in assistance. An application process for students who have additional need is available on the Athens State University website. Students who are experiencing financial hardship are encouraged to complete this application, as additional funds may be available to assist.
Athens State University recognizes the hardships the pandemic has placed on so many of its students, through lost income, healthcare costs, childcare issues, and more. Therefore, Athens State University is striving to ensure that students who need additional financial assistance to meet the needs brought on by the pandemic can apply for aid. While the initial disbursement is based on information students have already provided to the University, if there are additional needs students can apply through the application process.
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was signed in March 2021, adding additional funds to the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund. This fund provides colleges and universities the means to provide support to students who saw financial hardships as a result of the pandemic and ensure learning continues during the pandemic. Hardships may include added technology expenses, lost wages, overdue charges on student accounts, healthcare costs, and unexpected childcare expenses, among others.
HEERF III aid acts like a grant; therefore, students will not have to pay back Athens State University or the federal government. Funding received can be used to assist students with financial needs such as educational costs, housing, food, technology, childcare, and healthcare expenses.