The university received more than $42 million in federal stimulus money and will distribute emergency grants for students. President Michael V. Drake at a press conference March 10. Credit: Jack Long | Special Projects Director

Ohio State will receive more than $42.8 million from the federal coronavirus stimulus package, half of which must be distributed as emergency student grants, according to a fund allocation document released April 9 by the U.S. Department of Education. And that is exactly what Ohio State is doing, starting Tuesday.

University President Michael V. Drake announced in an email Tuesday that the university is creating Together As Buckeyes — an emergency grant program that will use university funds as well as the money received from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act — to assist students who are having difficulties with living expenses or other unexpected financial burdens due to COVID-19.

“We recognize that COVID-19 has had broad impacts, so this program is available to any student — undergraduate, graduate or professional at any campus — who has been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Drake said.

The grants are available to all levels of students on all campuses who have been negatively affected by the pandemic, the email said. They can apply to receive money from the grant program by filling out the emergency request form.

Students may use funds for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations as a result of the coronavirus such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child care,” Drake said. 

Applications will be evaluated by the Office of Student Financial Aid, the email said. They will evaluate eligibility based on each student’s circumstances and the advice of the U.S. Department of Education.

The federal government is immediately distributing more than $6.2 billion through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund authorized by the CARES Act which provides a total of nearly $14 billion to support colleges and their students, according to the press release.

The amount of money a school receives is determined by a formula in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act that considers the number of full-time students who qualify for federal Pell Grants as well as the total population of the school and number of part-time students prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the press release said. 

More than $21.4 million must be awarded as emergency financial aid grants for Ohio State students, the fund allocation document stated. 

Compared to other Big 10 schools, Ohio State’s main campus is receiving the third-highest amount from the stimulus package, following Penn State University and Rutgers University. 

Penn State will get more than $54.9 million with more than $27.4 million being designated for emergency financial aid grants to be given to students, according to the document. 

Rutgers is receiving more than $54.1 million with almost $27.1 million being allocated to serve as emergency financial aid grants for students.

Compared to other public universities in Ohio, Ohio State is receiving the most money, followed by the University of Cincinnati and Ohio University. 

The University of Cincinnati will get more than $23.5 million and Ohio University will get more than $19.4 million.

Students interested in applying for a grant can do so by downloading the request form here.

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