CARES Act

Arkansas Baptist College Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grants to Students

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which established emergency grants intended to assist college students with expenses incurred due to the disruption of campus operations. These funds are disbursed directly to students to assist with food, housing, course materials, technology, healthcare, child-care, or other expenses.

Following guidelines from the U.S. Department of Education, Arkansas Baptist College will disburse these cash grants to students who are most in need of financial relief due to the ongoing global pandemic. Grants will be awarded according to the availability of funds and documentation of financial impact.

Arkansas Baptist College has signed and returned to the U.S. Department of Education, the Certification and Agreement and the assurance to use no less than fifty (50) percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Fund Distribution

Arkansas Baptist College determined which students receives the Emergency Financial Aid Grants and the amount under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

  • The total amount of funds that the institution will receive, or has received under the HEERF student portion from the U. S. Department of Education pursuant to the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students is $415,510.00
  • The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students as of the date of reporting (i.e. the first 30-day deadline), and every 45 days thereafter is $410,350.00.
  • The estimated total number of students at the institution eligible to participate in the programs under Section 484 in the Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA) is 284.
  • The total number of students who have received an emergency grant is 284.
  • The college estimated that each student will receive $1,350.00 due to the disruption of campus operations caused by the global pandemic.
Student Eligibility

Students identified according to the established eligibility guidelines with qualifying expenses will be considered for CARES Act funding. Federal eligibility requirements include:

  • Being enrolled or accepted for enrollment in a degree, certificate or other recognized educational credential (including a program of study abroad approved for credit by the eligible institution at which such student is enrolled)—that is, a regular student under 34 CFR 2);
  • Not being enrolled in elementary or secondary school and have a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent;
  • Maintaining satisfactory academic progress (SAP) if the student is currently enrolled;
  • Not owing an overpayment (refund) on Title IV grants;
  • Not owing an overpayment (refund) on a Title IV Loan;
  • Not being in default on a Title IV Loan;
  • Filed with The U.S. Department of Education “as part of the original financial aid application process” a certification (Statement of Educational Purpose) that includes:
    • A statement of educational purpose, and;
    • The student’s Social Security Number (SSN);
  • Being a U.S. citizen or national, a permanent resident, or an eligible
  • Having returned any fraudulently obtained Title IV funds, if the student is convicted of or pled guilty or no contest to charges;
  • Not having fraudulently received Title IV Loans in excess of annual or aggregate limits;
  • Having repaid any Title IV loan overpayment amounts in excess of annual or aggregate limits, if obtained inadvertently;
  • Having Selective Service registration verified (the Title IV aid ineligibility for failure to register is actually in the Selective Service Act 3811(f));
  • Having a valid SSN, except for residents of the Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Republic of Palau;
  • Not having a federal or state conviction for drug possession or sale, with certain time limitations;
  • Students must be enrolled at Arkansas Baptist College for the spring 2020 term;
  • Students that withdrew from the college prior to March 13, 2020 are not eligible to receive funds; and,
  • Any student enrolled in exclusively online classes for their academic program prior to the transition to remote instruction are not eligible to receive

Students that currently do not meet these criteria will be awarded on a case by case basis after meeting the eligibility requirements and if funds are available.

Notification to Students 

Emails were sent to potential eligible students as notification of the CARES Act funds and the eligibility requirements. In the email, students were informed of the checks mailed by Arkansas Baptist College starting May 22, 2020. Students were informed to contact the Registrar, if the current address changed or is different from the address of record for the College.

Student Loan Assistance

COVID-19 pandemic? Here’s what we you need to know about your federal student loans owned by the Department of Education:

• No payments are due and no interest will be charged until  December 31, 2020.
• If you had your payments automatically scheduled, your payments between April and September should not be automatically withdrawn from your back account.

• If you were delinquent on your student loan payments before April, this suspension brought your account current. You should use this time as an opportunity to explore other payment relief options – like income-driven repayment – that can lower your payments when they resume in October 2020. Learn more at: https://studentconnections.com/blog/coronavirus “

Cares Act Reporting

In acknowledgement of Arkansas Baptist College’s  signing and returning its CARES Act funding  in April 2020, Arkansas Baptist College assures the following compliance under Section 18004 (a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide emergency financial aid grants to students.

Arkansas Baptist College received a STUDENT grant notice in the amount of $415,510 on April 24 2020; an HBCU grant notice in the amount of $1,032,491 on May 5, 2020; and an INSTITUTIONAL grant notice on May 14, 2020 in the amount of $415,509.  Distribution of funds to students began on May 22, 2020.

As of October 30, 2020, Arkansas Baptist College has processed funds for reimbursement to students for tuition, housing, room and board from the Institutional and Student grant funds in the amount of $387, 480 in emergency financial aid grants to students; $250, 632 in reimbursements; computer supplies and software for distance learning in the amount of $109,348; and campus operations in the amount of $832,450 for providing additional emergency financial aid grants to students from the HBCU grant portion.

The total number of students identified as eligible to participate in the program under 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and thus eligible to receive  emergency financial aid grants under 18004 (a)(1) of the CARES Act was 287.  Arkansas Baptist College used the following method to determine eligibility and the amounts provided.  Students who were enrolled in the spring 2020 semester, who had a 2019-2020 FAFSA on file and who met all Title IV requirements for Federal Student Aid were declared eligible for CARES Act grants.  The college communicated with all students through announcements on the college website and written communications directly to students via e-mail.  In the e-mail students were informed that checks would be mailed by Arkansas Baptist College beginning May 22, 2020.  

The students were informed that the college estimated that each would receive $1,350 due to the global pandemic.  They were further informed in the e-mail to contact the Registrar if their current address had changed or is different from the college’s address of record.

The final planned use of funds, $283,600, will be determined before the end of the Fall 2020 semester.