Fellow Bears:

The disruptions stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic over the past few months have had a direct financial impact on many of our students and their families. The University of Northern Colorado recently applied for and received approximately $3.8M from the United States Department of Education through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to provide emergency grants to our students to offset some of the unexpected expenses they are experiencing. This pool of funding will be allocated to students through two methods. First, more than two-thirds of the funds will be allocated directly to all Title IV-eligible students with the amount of each student’s emergency grant being determined on a sliding scale based on their Expected Family Contribution. Second, the remaining $1.2M will be made available through an application process to students who are enrolled in the summer and the 2020-21 academic year and continue to face significant financial hardship as a result of the pandemic. Title IV eligibility is a requirement to receive CARES Act assistance through the direct allocation or application process, as directed by the Department of Education.

Students receiving an emergency grant through the direct allocation of the first $2.6M will receive an email from Marty Somero, Director of Financial Aid, with additional details, and we will begin to process disbursements next week. Please note that although no application is needed to receive these funds, you will need to complete a certification form before June 30, 2020 to receive your emergency grant. A link to the form will be provided in the email from Financial Aid.

We anticipate that the financial impact of COVID-19 on our students and their families will not be limited to the spring semester and that some students will need to request additional support to continue their studies in the summer, fall, and next spring. We have set aside a third of the funding provided by the Department of Education—about $1.2M—to address ongoing need and support students as they continue to work toward degree completion throughout the next academic year. Information on how to apply for additional support in the summer, fall, and spring will be shared with students soon. About 10% of these funds will be set aside for summer, with the balance of the funds being reserved to support students next fall and spring.

Finally, although the Department of Education has determined that Title IV eligibility is a requirement to receive CARES Act assistance, we know that many other students are in need of additional support. In order to provide assistance to students not included in the CARES Act, we have partnered with UNC donors to make additional resources available. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, UNC’s DACA students will receive grants through the Office of Financial Aid that are equal to those that will be provided to students through the direct allocation of emergency grants through the CARES Act. We have also received additional support from dozens of generous donors for the UNC Disaster Relief Scholarship, which can be made available to students regardless of residency, citizenship, or Title IV eligibility in the Fall semester. Disaster Relief scholarships will be awarded through an application process, managed by the Office of Financial Aid. Additional information will be available soon regarding application processes for these funds. 

I am proud that we are able to provide support to our students as we navigate these challenging times so that they can continue their education and make progress toward degree completion. I want to thank all of our UNC donors and staff who are helping to ensure that we can provide grants to students toward promoting that goal. If you have questions about CARES Act emergency grants or Disaster Relief funds, please visit the CARES Act FAQ page. You may also contact the Bursar’s Office at 970-351-4UNC (Option 3) or bursar@unco.edu with specific questions regarding the disbursement of your emergency grant funding, or the Office of Financial Aid at 970-351-4UNC (Option 1) orofa@unco.edu with other general questions.

I hope that you and your families are well as we transition into the summer months.

Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Bears.

andy signature

Andy Feinstein
UNC President