Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) is authorized by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Public Law 116-260, signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. In total, the CRRSAA authorized $81.88 billion in support for education, in addition to the $30.75 billion provided in 2020 through the Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, Public Law 116-136. NDSCS will receive $1,641,417 in HEERF II funds.

  • $411,676 must be used directly to grant our students, in exceptional need, emergency aid to assist with academic and basic needs (e.g. food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, childcare).
  • The bill defines that funds to each institution of higher education to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.

HEERF II, much like the CARES Act, also enables flexibility to current regulations such as Federal Workstudy, Satisfactory Academic Progress, and Institutional refunds/federal student loan flexibility. NDSCS will continue to evaluate students’ evolving circumstances and accepting special circumstance forms.

Distribution Process

In line with U.S. Department of Education expectations, NDSCS will distribute HEERF II funds to students who are in exceptional need, defined as Pell-eligible students, and those self-identifying as having need due to the COVID-19 situation. Under HEERF II guidelines, the student portion will be provided to students enrolled Spring 2021. All disbursement will be tracked by Financial Aid and will be reported in conjunction with the Grant office, in accordance with the guidance in HEERF II (after 30 days and every 45 days thereafter).

  • Pell-eligible (Face-to-face, Hybrid, Online) students: The 471 students in the category will each receive a $800 grant as soon as possible; this will enable those in exceptional need will receive funding without barriers. (HEERF II student funding: $376,676)
  • All Title-IV Eligible[1] Students: Recognizing that the COVID-19 situation has drastically impacted all students, $34,876 of the HEERF II student funding will be awarded to students in exceptional need, regardless of previous established financial need or prior eligibility, through a simple application and review process.
    • Eligible students will be encouraged to apply for funds to cover expenses related to COVID-19; up to $500 based on availability.

Application Process

Students experiencing financial uncertainty, demonstrating exceptional need, due to the COVID-19 situation will complete an online application form; the form will require pertinent information to determine Title-IV eligibility[1].

The application form will be reviewed by a panel of three and will be awarded based on agreement between the three panelists’ professional judgement. Awards will be prioritized to assist continuing students.

[1] Title IV-eligible students are defined as: having U.S. citizenship or eligible noncitizen; having a valid Social Security number; registered with Selective Service (if the student is male); having a high school diploma, GED, or completion of high school in an approved homeschool setting; not in default on a federal student loan or have made satisfactory arrangements to repay it; do not owe money back on a federal student grant or have made satisfactory arrangements to repay it; will not receive a federal Pell grant from more than one college for the same period of enrollment.

Updated as of March 3, 2021

Email sent to students on March 2, 2021 - Pell Grant

Email sent to students on March 3, 2021 - HEERF II

Email sent to students on March 22, 2021 - Special Circumstances

As of March 19, 2021, $379,257 has been awarded to 491 students.

Updated as of March 26, 2021

As of April 5, 2021, $400,741 has been awarded to 527 students.

As part of HEERF II, NDSCS received $1,229,741 in institutional funding. As of April 5, 2021, $21,000 has been expended on technology improvements on campus.

Updated as of April 8, 2021

Institutional Funds HEERFII Quarter 1 Report

Updated as of April 29, 2021

Institutional Funds HEERFII Quarter 1 Report

Updated as of June 23, 2021

Institutional Funds HEERF II & III Quarter 2 Report

Student awards were not disbursed during the quarter of April 1 to June 30, 2021.

Updated as of July 8, 2021

As of September 30, 2021, $500 was awarded to one student for the quarter of July 1 to September 30, 2021  


Updated as of October 4, 2021