Dear Student,

You may have heard that the federal Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided financial resources to colleges and universities. The resources available through the CARES Act under the Higher Education Emergency Relief (HEER) Fund allow universities to distribute grants to students in need to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19.

You are receiving this letter to provide you with some information about this fund. Based on criteria and guidance provided by the US Department of Education and on records available to UGA, you did not qualify for financial assistance from this fund.

However, based on special circumstances, a student may appeal their HEER Fund Grant eligibility. Students may also appeal the amount awarded to them. To request an appeal you will need to submit a HEER Fund Appeal Application. Applications will be reviewed by a committee of university personnel. Appeals should be submitted by June 15, 2020. Keep in mind that to be eligible, UGA must have on file a 2019-20 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If you have not filed a FAFSA yet, you will need to do so immediately by going to the fafsa.gov site; priority consideration by the appeals committee will be for eligible students with valid FAFSAs on file at UGA by June 1, 2020. Appeals from applicants with valid FAFSAs submitted after June 1 will only be considered if HEER Funds remain available after considering all other eligible applications with FAFSAs on file by June 1.

We know that the last few months have brought much uncertainty and disruption to the lives of our students, faculty and staff. We felt it was important to notify you of the distribution of the grant funds and your status, as well as the opportunity to submit an appeal for consideration.

Questions

  • If you have further questions about HEER, including the eligibility criteria and details about awards, you may access the HEER Fund page of the UGA coronavirus site.
  • If you have questions about submitting a FAFSA, please contact the Office of Student Financial Aid at osfa@uga.edu.
  • If you would like to submit an appeal for a HEER Fund Grant, you will need to submit a HEER Fund Appeal Application. For additional information, please visit the HEER Fund page of the UGA coronavirus site.