Kankakee Community College is preparing to distribute a little more than $633,000 in federal aid to students affected by the disruption which occurred when courses were moved online in March 2020.
The money is from the Federal Emergency Stimulus Funding (CARES Act) for Colleges and Universities. It is part of a stimulus package, according to the U.S. Department of Education, designed to “assist with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare).”
Each college was given authority to develop its own process for allocating the funds. To apply for CARES Act funds, KCC students must also be eligible to file a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
“Most KCC credit division students who were enrolled during the Spring 2020, or who are registered for Summer 2020, are eligible to apply for CARES Act funds,” said Jose da Silva, Ph.D., vice president for student affairs. “To be eligible, students don’t have to already be receiving financial aid. For those who do receive financial aid, funds from the CARES Act will not affect that money.”
The funding from KCC is not available to select groups, including international students, Adult Education and other non-credit students, according to the relief fund guidelines. Emergency funding from the KCC Foundation is available to these student populations. Students can contact the KCC Financial Aid Office for more information on emergency funds.
“In order to help the students who both want and need additional aid, the process includes an application and a demonstration of need,” da Silva said. “Amounts given will vary by student based on their individual need and financial strain.”
It will take up to 2 weeks to determine eligibility, process requests, print and send checks, said Michelle Hasik, KCC director of financial aid. The first checks are expected to be sent by the end of May.
A link to the CARES Act Fund application will be at kcc.edu/financialaid by May 7.
More information is available from KCC’s Office of Financial Aid through email at email@example.com or phone 815-802-8550.