Wright State to issue $5.2M federal funds to help eligible students during pandemic


DAYTON – Wright State University will assist students affected by the coronavirus pandemic by distributing more than $5.2 million in federal funds in March.

Wright State will issue the emergency financial grants directly to more than 6,750 students who were enrolled in classes in the spring 2021 semester.

“We believe these funds will provide some financial relief to a broad range of spring 2021 students who experienced hardship as a result of COVID-19,” said Kim Everhart, director of financial aid.

Wright State will begin issuing funds beginning the week of March 8 with the goal of completing the process by March 19.

Federal funds are available to help students with emergency costs caused by the coronavirus, including tuition, food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare.

The grants were provided through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II, which provides funding to institutions to provide emergency financial aid grants to students, many of whom continue to face financial challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. HEERF II was part of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021, which Congress passed in December.

Wright State received $5,070,423 from HEERF II to provide direct relief to students due to COVID-19. The university also will distribute to students an additional $207,000 in funds remaining from the 2020 CARES Act.

A total of 6,753 Wright State students are eligible for grants, including undergraduate and graduate students and students enrolled in the Boonshoft School of Medicine and the School of Professional Psychology.

Students who are degree-seeking, enrolled at least half-time during the spring 2021 semester, are U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens will receive funds.

The university will allocate the grants based on each student’s FAFSA, prioritizing those with exceptional financial needs. Nearly 43% of the eligible students will receive the maximum grant of $1,100.

“We assume that all students seeking federal financial aid via the FAFSA have sought out financial assistance, and those needs could be greater given the national emergency,” Everhart said.

Wright State automatically will award the eligible students. Each student who receives funding will receive an email explaining the details of the funding.

Funds cannot be awarded to non-degree students or international students including undocumented and DACA students.

As part of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, Wright State received an additional $12.3 million in federal funding to defray university expenses associate with the coronavirus. The university is waiting for clearer guidelines from the federal government before deciding how these funds will be allocated.

This is the second round of federal funding Wright State has received to help with costs associated with the pandemic. In 2020, the university directly dispersed nearly $4.8 million in federal funds from the CARES Act to students affected by the pandemic.