MIT eligible for $5 million in federal COVID-19 financial support

$2.5 million must be ‘reserved to provide students with emergency financial aid grants’

MIT is eligible to receive approximately $5 million in financial support for COVID-19 from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. At least 50% of the money must be “reserved to provide students with emergency financial aid grants,” U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos wrote in a letter to college and university presidents April 9.

Kimberly Allen, director of media relations for the MIT News Office, wrote in an email to The Tech that “MIT senior leaders are still reviewing information from the government, considering the range of needs facing our students, and determining how best to proceed.”

The Department of Education will distribute about $14 billion to colleges and universities.

Institutions must sign the Certificate of Funding and Agreement to receive their allocated funds, DeVos wrote.

Each college or university “may develop its own system and process for determining how to allocate” the emergency funds, DeVos wrote.

Additionally, DeVos encouraged institutions to “prioritize” students with the “greatest need” while “establishing a maximum funding threshold for each student to ensure that these funds are distributed as widely as possible.”

According to a statement on the Department of Education website, the CARES Act allocates 75% of funds to colleges and universities based on their full-time enrollment of Pell Grant recipients. The other 25% of funds are allocated based on their full-time enrollment of students who are not Pell Grant recipients. Students who were enrolled exclusively in distance education before the COVID-19 pandemic were not included in these calculations.

The Crimson, Harvard’s student newspaper, reported that Harvard will receive nearly $9 million in aid, Yale will receive nearly $7 million, and Princeton will receive $2.5 million.