American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP)

Limestone University POLICY ON American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) (HEERF III)

Under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP), Limestone University is a recipient of $3,399,254 in HEERF III funds that must be distributed to students (including students exclusively enrolled in distance education).

Under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, Limestone University is required to prioritize grants to students with exceptional need, such as students who receive Pell Grants. However, students do not need to be Pell recipients, or meet Title IV eligibility requirements to receive a financial aid grant. Limestone University will use the funds received to make financial aid grants to students to be used to help cover expenses related to the cost of attendance or emergency costs that arise due to Coronavirus, such as but not limited to tuition, food, housing, health care, mental health care, or childcare.

Upon receipt of the Grant Award Notification (GANS) from the Department of Education, Limestone University will promptly make available emergency financial aid grants to students as funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP).

  • Per guidelines, the institution is required to provide an update on the distribution of funds to students every quarter. For quarter ending September 30, 2021, Limestone had not yet disbursed HEERF III grant funds to students. The determination of student eligibility was under review.
  • Per guidelines, the institution is required to provide an update on the distribution of funds to students every quarter. For quarter ending December 31, 2021, Limestone disbursed $1,169,555  of the $3,399,254 student grant funds to 1,231 students out of a total of 1,834 students eligible for HEERF III funds.

Student Eligibility

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA

  • 1st round of funding: Enrolled in the Fall 2021 semester (Day, Online, and Graduate).
  • 2nd round of funding: TBD
  • Students must submit a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) Certification Agreement.

Limestone University retains the discretion to:

  • Determine the amount of each individual Emergency Financial Aid Grant consistent with all applicable laws including non-discrimination laws.
  • Prescribe the methodology for distribution of funds across the student population.

 The ARP funding will be managed by the Vice President of Finance and Administration.  In addition, the Director of Financial Aid and Director of Finance/Controller also contributed to calculations and administration of funds. The University will prioritize the awarding of student emergency grants based on financial need. The University will allocate emergency grant awards to students across multiple categories.

There will be two rounds of funding per program (Day, Online, and Graduate): one in the Fall semester and one in the Spring semester.

Disbursement Eligibility

First Round: Eligible students enrolled for Fall 2021 semester (Day, Online, and Graduate).

Categories

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) was used in determining the EFC Categories. The first category is Full Pell, students with an EFC of $0.  The second category was Partial Pell. The third category includes students with EFCs over the Pell limit but not more than 50% of a full year tuition and fees. The fourth category includes students with EFCs of more than 50% of a full year tuition and fees but not more than 100% of a full year’s tuition and fees. The last category is any student that had an EFC of greater than a full year’s Tuition and Fees or did not have an EFC. Each category is based on the students’ program: Day, Online, and Graduate.

Disbursement Dollars

Traditional Day Students: For students enrolled full-time, the calculation started with a set dollar amount for Full Pell Day students. Twenty-six percent of a full years Pell was used which when rounded came to $1,700. The next category was adjusted by fifty percent, i.e. Partial Pell received $860. The last three categories were adjusted by fifty percent of the previous and rounded up to $450. For students enrolled part-time, the calculation started with the Full Pell Dollar amount for the day students, which was divided by 12 credit hours (full time status). That made the full Pell rate for part-time, when rounded, $140 per credit hour. The next category was adjusted by fifty percent, ie. Partial Pell received $70 per credit hour. The last three categories were adjusted by fifty percent of the previous, which was $35 per credit hour.  Once the per credit hour amount was determined for each student, that number was multiplied by the number of credit hours enrolled for the Fall 2021 semester to calculate the award amount.

Online and Graduate students: For Online and Graduate students, the calculation started with the Full Pell Dollar amount for the day students, which was divided by 12 credit hours (full-time status). That made the full Pell rate for Online and Graduate, when rounded up $193 per credit hour. The next category, Partial Pell, was adjusted by fifty percent and rounded up to $100 per credit hour. The last three categories were adjusted by fifty percent of the previous, to $50 per credit hour.  Once the per credit hour amount was determined for each student, that number was multiplied by the number of credit hours enrolled for Fall 2021 semester to calculate the award amount.

Instruction, Directions, and/or Guidance Provided to the Student

Students who were deemed eligible by Limestone University received individualized emails from the Business Office providing notification of the availability of the HEERF III emergency grant, as well as instructions on completing the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) Certification Agreement.

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) Certification Agreement must be completed by the student to receive HEERF III funds.  Active confirmation on the method of delivery must be chosen by the student. The student must choose to have the grant funds disbursed directly to them, or to authorize Limestone to apply the grant funds directory to their Limestone student account.

Limestone University will report:

  • The total amount of funds that the institution will receive or has received from ED.
  • The total amount of HEERF grants distributed to students.
  • The estimated total number of students at the institution that are eligible to receive HEERF grants.
  • The total number of students who have received an HEERF grant.
  • The method(s) used by the institution to determine which students receive HEERF grants and how much they would receive.
  • Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the HEERF grants.