Covid-19

The University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College is dedicated to the safety and wellness of our students, faculty, staff, and our greater community.  As we have since March of 2020, we continue to follow the guidance of the Gallia County Health Department and the Ohio Department of Health.  As always, COVID protocols are subject to change as the guidance changes.

At this time, Rio Grande will not require masks on campus.  Anyone who wishes to wear a mask is certainly encouraged to do so.  We will continue to offer the COVID vaccination and booster shots for all employees and students through our Health Services Department.  In addition, free COVID testing is also available through our Health Services Department.  Contact Student Affairs for additional information. 

If you are exposed to someone with COVID-19, regardless of your vaccination status, you are encouraged to wear a mask for 10 days and monitor for symptoms.  As long as you remain symptom-free, you are not required to quarantine.  If you develop symptoms, you should test for COVID-19 and quarantine until your results are received.  

If you test positive for COVID-19, you are required to isolate yourself for five days from the first day you developed symptoms.  This means you are not permitted to come to any Rio Grande campus.  If, after five days, you are fever free with no medication and your symptoms have improved, you may return to campus on day six, but you must wear a mask for five additional days.  If you test positive, please notify the COVID team at covid@rio.edu.

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.   You can contact the COVID team at any time at covid@rio.edu. 
 

CARES

CARES ACT 
The University of Rio Grande has signed and returned to the U.S. Department of Education the Certification and Agreement for the federal CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act on April 15, 2020. The University of Rio Grande has recently received a total of $1,717,045 from CARES Act funding. 50% of the total funding will be distributed to students directly to be used as Emergency Financial Aid Grants for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus. The other 50% will be utilized to off-set costs experienced by the institution to develop and deliver immediate remote learning operations along with other operating expenses related to the coronavirus outbreak.

Based on the U.S. Department of Education guidelines of Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, Rio Grande has identified 1073 students who are considered eligible to receive the student Emergency Financial Aid Grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act. In an effort to help the greatest number of students possible, URG has determined to distribute a portion of Emergency Financial Aid Grants to all students who are eligible as of May 1st, 2020.

 

Eligibility

The CARES Act requires students who receive the grants to meet Title IV federal financial aid eligibility requirements, as determined by a completed FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) for the 2019-20 academic year.

According to guidance provided by the U.S. Department of Education, applicants also cannot have been enrolled in exclusively online programs for the spring 2020 semester before COVID-19 forced all classes online.

To be eligible for the grants, students must meet the following requirements:

Filed a FAFSA for the current 2019-2020 academic year;
Not enrolled in an exclusively online program for the spring 2020 semester before COVID-19;
Have a valid social security number;
Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen;
If male, be registered for U.S. Selective Service;
Have a high school diploma or GED or have completed high school in an approved homeschool setting;
Making satisfactory academic progress;
Not in default on a federal student loan; and
Have been enrolled at Rio Grande for the spring 2020 semester as an undergraduate or graduate degree-seeking student, and be enrolled in one or more classes creditable toward a degree.
 

Determining Award Amount

The proportionate share given to students is determined by a student’s financial need based on the 2019-2020 Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Students who qualify for 2019-2020 Federal Pell Grant funding will receive funding based on the number of hours the student is enrolled for Spring 2020 term.
Students who have a 2019-2020 EFC of 5575-50000 will receive $500
Students with a 2019-2020 EFC higher than 50000 will receive $250
 

The funds may be used to cover the following expenses:

Housing;
Food;
Utilities;
Course materials;
Child care;
Technology or other resources needed for online coursework;
Medical expenses (including additional support needed for accessibility purposes);
Travel or moving expenses for returning home due to the transition to online learning
The University of Rio Grande will not require an additional application to receive these funds. If students qualify based on the eligibility requirements above, they will receive a check in the mail for the amount determined using the above-mentioned method. Checks will be disbursed May 15th.

Please contact the Director of Financial Aid, Meghann Fraley for more information at mfraley@rio.edu.

HEERF II

Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) Report and Disclosure – University of Rio Grande

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) Reporting
Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students

In February, the University of Rio Grande agreed to the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF II) Certification and Agreement with the U.S. Department of Education that required Rio to make additional Student Financial Aid Grants available to students up to the same amount as required in the CARES ACT: $858,523.

On April 9th 2021, URG distributed $858,523 in Student Financial Aid Grants to 1,236 students.

URG estimates as of March 2021, 1,236 students are eligible to receive HEERF II Student Financial Aid Grants.

Eligibility

URG has established the following criteria for students to receive CRRSAA HEERF II Student Financial Aid Grants.

The following student populations will not be included in the emergency stimulus plan:

CCP students
International Students
Audit Students (non-degree seeking, auditing classes for personal growth)
Students who withdrew prior to March 16
All other Rio students will receive emergency aid based on the following criteria as determine by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):

Students with an EFC (expected family contribution) of $50,000 or more will receive $250.00
Students with No FAFSA will receive $250.00
Students with an EFC between $5,577 and $49,000 will receive $500.00
Students with an EFC between 0 and $5,576 (Pell eligible students) will receive $500.00 plus $30.73 per credit hour for each credit hour the student was enrolled in during Spring 2021 semester.
 

HEERF III

ARP: American Rescue Plan

STUDENT FUNDS QUARTERLY REPORTING
Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students

In May 2021, the University of Rio Grande agreed to the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF III) Certification and Agreement with the U.S. Department of Education. This agreement requires Rio to make additional Student Financial Aid Grants to students in the aggregate amount of $2,507,613. URG received a combination of institutional and student HEERF III funds of $4,939,700.

Eligibility

URG has established the following criteria for students to receive HEERF III Student Financial Aid Grants.

The following student populations will not be included in the emergency stimulus plan:

  • CCP students
  • International Students
  • Audit Students (non-degree seeking, auditing classes for personal growth)
  • Students who have withdrawn
  • Student Distribution Data

URG distributed $1,521,891.18 in HEERF III Student Financial Aid Grants to 899 students. An estimated 1,394 students are currently eligible to receive HEERF III Student Financial Aid Grants.

How the distribution of funds is determined

An application process was implemented for HEERF III emergency student aid. A committee was assembled to review each application based on student need and qualifications. This application and eligibility requirements were communicated to students via email and advisor appointments. The amount awarded varies on student requests with the maximum amount awarded of $6,495 for the year.       

 

 

Covid-19 has had a tremendous financial impact on our students. We want to hopefully ease any financial stress our students could face going into the new school year. Students can apply for Emergency Student Funding for students who experience an accident, illness, financial hardship, or other emergency situation that may jeopardize their ability to continue their education.

Student Emergency Fund Application

What is the of the Student Emergency Fund?

This fund supports currently enrolled students who are experiencing financial hardships, accidents, illnesses, or emergency situations that jeopardize their ability to continue their education.

Priority is given to students needing assistance with housing, food, internet access for online learning, child care, and transportation issues.

What happens after I submit a request?

A committee consisting of various student services staff will review the application and email you within 7-10 business days.

What documentation is needed from me?

Some examples of documentation you can provide for the emergency student fund include rental lease, internet bills, childcare bills, etc…

Additional financial resources or relief for students include:

Student Financial Aid Verification Relief: In order to provide additional relief to students the US Department of Education determined verification of most FAFSA information for 2021-2022 will be waived. This means that students selected for V1 verification through KHEAA will no longer be required to submit financial information in order to receive student financial aid. However, students selected for verification V4 and V5 which require proof of identity and high school completion will not be waived. These updated requirements are only effective for the academic year 2021-2022 which begins August 23, 2021.
Special Circumstance Appeal for Student Financial Aid: The FAFSA uses financial information from two years prior to determine a student or family need. Financial Aid recognizes that households can experience changes in income or other finances not reflected in their current FAFSA information. When changes to household income decrease, the Financial Aid Office can re-evaluate a student’s aid eligibility based on their current circumstances. This process is called a Special Circumstance Appeal, which requires the student to submit a form (link here) along with documentation to prove the change in finances. Please, keep in mind that the Financial Aid Office will include income from unemployment, and will be required the student to submit unemployment documentation with their appeal.