CARES ACT Emergency Grant Information at Normandale

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Report Updates

In late March, 2020 federal legislation was passed to provide economic relief to individuals and organizations dealing with the ramifications of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This legislation-titled the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (or CARES Act) established a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) for colleges and universities in the United States.

On April 13, Normandale signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement to receive $2,401,288 in funding that will be used to provide emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. 

The CARES Act directed that 50% of HEERF money must go toward emergency student financial assistance for expenses related to shifting from in-person to remote instruction. Eligibility requirements for this emergency assistance include enrollment in courses that were:

  • In-person, face-to-face instruction (i.e.,"ground-based" in federal terminology)
  • Credit-earning (not an audited course)
  • Semester-based
  • Continued through or started on or after the first Monday of Spring Break

To be eligible, students also cannot have dropped, withdrawn, or had a Last Day of Attendance before March 6. Various restrictions on the use of these funds were established in the CARES Act and through regulatory direction from the federal Department of Education. These restrictions mean that several categories of students cannot receive emergency financial assistance, including:

  • Current high school students
  • Seniors citizens who already receive a tuition discount
  • DACA/DREAM Act Students
  • Students with Employer-Paid Tuition (EPT) including tuition waivers
  • Incarcerated students
  • International students with an F1 Visa status in SEVIS

Normandale will issue emergency student financial assistance payments to eligible students on Monday, May 11 based on the criteria above. All students meeting the above criteria will receive a $200 CARES Base Award to help defray the cost of moving to remote instruction (e.g. internet and modem costs). All eligible students who received a Federal Pell Grant will receive an additional $400 CARES Supplemental Award, for a total of $600 to help defray other food and living expenses created by the disruption of on-campus activities. 

If you are attending more than one Minnesota State college or university, you can only receive a CARES Base Award from one school. If you believe you meet the criteria above for a BASE Award, but do not see it on your student account, email or contact the Normandale Financial Aid Department to review your account.

In order to speed up your distribution of funds, we encourage you to sign up for Direct Deposit and make sure your correct address is updated here.  

As of May 11, 5,453 student were eligible to participate oin programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, and the guidelines above, and therefore, eligible to receive an emergency financial aid grant. A total of 5,453 students have received a total of $2,017,000 in HEERF dollars.

A minimum of 768 additional awards will be made through the emergency grant application process. Student emergency grants of up to $500 are available with the ability to reapply every 30 days for a maximum total of $2,000 per student, as funds are available.  

If you need additional financial support, funds are available through the Normandale Cares grant program. For more information, go to To apply, click on the application link.  

Students who did not meet the eligibility criteria listed above, such as Dreamers or International Students, may use this application process to apply for institutionally-funded emergency grants as well. 

Differing lists of students who were eligibile for the emergency funds listed above, received email communications about the funds on May 6, 8 & 13. There will be future communications going to students about the Normandale Cares Grant Emergency Funds