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COVID-19 Updates

CARES Act Funding for Students

Posted on April 21, 2020

Dear Students,

I am pleased to share some good news with you today. As part of the recently passed federal CARES Act, the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) established a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund.

The amount a university receives will be largely based on the number of full-time students who are eligible for Pell Grants and federal scholarships for low-income students. The funding is meant to help students pay for course materials, food, housing, health care and child-care expenses.

In total, the California State University system will receive approximately $262.5 million. Fresno State will receive approximately $32 million of that amount, of which at least 50% ($16 million) must be provided to students as emergency financial aid grants.

As I write this message, we are finalizing the method for determining which students are eligible. Our goal is to distribute this money as quickly as possible in order to help our students with the support they need to continue their educational pursuits without additional barriers. The distribution of these funds will be based on guidance from the U.S. Department of Education and the CSU, with the priority being students who demonstrate significant financial need.

At this time, we have not yet received our campus funding, but I will send you a follow-up email in the next few days with more information about the exact timing for the distribution of this funding.

Please continue to take good care of yourself and remain focused on finishing the spring semester strong.

President Joseph I. Castro