Financial Aid

UNCW Clocktower

COVID-19 Relief & Financial Aid  

Due to the evolving nature of COVID-19, we understand that this is a time of uncertainty for many of our Seahawk families.  The following information should be useful in explaining what additional financial resources are available to you during this time of need. 

The Federal Government provided funding to support both students and the institution (UNCW) in 2020 and 2021.  The right sidebar includes student communications from 2020 and 2021, and Federal reporting requirements.

  1. Federal HEERF II CRRSAA Emergency Relief Funding (beginning February, Spring 2021)

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) II provides emergency funding to universities to assist students in need during the coronavirus pandemic.  In 2020, this funding was known as the CARES Act Funding.

UNCW has received HEERF II funding and has established the HEERF II CRRSAA Emergency Relief Fund to distribute grants ranging from $300 to $900 to eligible students to help cover expenses related to the cost of attendance (i.e. food, housing & utilities, health insurance - including mental health care, transportation, or child care) or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus. 

Eligible students will meet the following requirements:

  • You must be an enrolled graduate or undergraduate student for spring 2021.
  • You must be a U.S. Citizen or Eligible Noncitizen
  • You must qualify for need which is measured by the 2020-21 FAFSA.
  • The family income capacity will be $150,000 mirroring that of the new stimulus payment income capacity.

Funds from the HEERF II CRRSAA Emergency Relief Fund are not considered financial aid and do not affect a student's current or future financial aid eligibility.  Per guidance from the Federal Government, these grants will be distributed to our students with exceptional need which will be identified by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), week beginning 2/22/2021.  For those with a direct deposit account, grants will be processed as such. The rest will be processed and mailed via check. A separate email notification will be sent to each student who is receiving funding. 

Students not eligible for CRRSAA HEERF II funding and in need of financial support, or those who have questions about the new HEERF III funding can reach out to their financial aid counselor to see what additional financing resources exist for them.

  1. UNCW Student Emergency Grant

Thanks to UNCW donors and assistance from the UNC System, hundreds of emergency grants have been awarded to students since the pandemic hit in March 2020.  If you are a currently enrolled student in need, please complete this application. The University committee will work to prioritize requests based on need as fund are available.  

  1. 2020/21 Financial Aid Appeals

2020/21 appeals for COVID-19 related income losses were accepted June – November 2020.  For any remaining income losses, submissions were be made after January 1, 2021 – March 1, 2021.  All financing options are listed here.  If you’re still experiencing losses due to COVID-19 and are concerned about aid for 2021/22, please reach out to your financial aid counselor for additional options/guidance. 

HEERF II Act FAQs

How will I receive the funding?

For students who have signed up for an e-refund on their e-bill account, funds will be directly deposited into their account of choice.  Otherwise, refund checks will be mailed.

When will I receive my refund?

Refunds will be processed once the 2021 SeaNet Acknowledgement has been completed.  Please allow at least three (3) business days from the date listed on the e-bill for receipt of your e-refund.

Does this funding reduce my financial aid?

No, this fund does not impact your financial aid in any way.  It’s a one-time grant that does not have to be paid back.

I am not enrolled/just graduated.  Can I receive this funding?

No.  You must be enrolled in an eligible degree/certificate program.  If the Federal government provides new guidance later, students will be notified.

Can non-US Citizens apply for the Federal CARES Act funding?

No.  Citizens and eligible noncitizens are eligible.

What do I do with the funding if I determine I have no associated expenses as a result of COVID-19 campus disruptions? 

Everyone had cost of attendance expenses in the spring or emergency expenses during the pandemic.  If you insist that you cannot use the funding, you should return the unused funds to the Student Accounts Office