CARES Act (HEERF I) and CRRSAA (HEERF II) Funding at GIA



As GIA continues to closely monitor the impact of COVID-19, we stand ready to support students overcome any interruption this pandemic has had on their lives. GIA is here to support you during this challenging time and has support funds available for students impacted by COVID-19.

View the GIA Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Reports:
Student Portion
Institutional Portion

CRRSAA/HEERF II

UPDATE regarding the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act 2021 (CRRSAA)/Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II):

On 14 January, the Department of Education announced additional funds available to higher education institutions to serve students and ensure learning continues during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Funding is allocated by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA).

The statutory requirement of the HEERF programme states that funds must be used to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare). Based on methodology for calculating allocations per Section 18004(a) (1) of the CRRSAA, GIA is eligible for a total of $251,997. Of this amount, $88,071 must be allocated directly to eligible students.

Qualified students must have started instruction in the GIA US on-campus Graduate Gemologist (GG), Graduate Jeweler (GJ), or Jewelry Design & Technology (JDT) programmes, and have been an active student on 16/03/2020 (Carlsbad campus) or 12/03/2020 (New York campus). Within those three programmes, GIA has established two groups of students who qualify for the grant, following the US Department of Education guidance.

Group One: Students meeting the qualifications described above who have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The verification process must be complete and aid already calculated. Award amounts are based on the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as calculated in the FAFSA.

Group Two: Students meeting the qualifications described above who are eligible to file a FAFSA but have not done so. These students must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible to file a FAFSA: are a US citizen or eligible non-citizen; have a valid Social Security number; have registered with the US Selective Service if the student is male; have a high school diploma or GED, or have completed secondary education in an approved home school setting.

How will qualifying students be notified and receive funds?

Students will be notified via a secure email. Students must then complete the 'Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund' certification form and return it to GIA. A cheque will be sent to the student within 30 days or applied to their tuition account with the student’s consent.

Are there limitations on how students can spend the money?

As outlined by the US Department of Education, students must use the funds for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare expenses.

How is the CARES Act funding different from CRRSAA funding?

Unlike the CARES Act, the CRRSAA requires that institutions prioritise students with 'exceptional need', such as but not limited to students who receive Pell Grants.

I received funds from the CARES Act. Will I receive CRRSAA (HEERF II) funds?

If you have signed the enrolment agreement; have started instruction in, or are currently active or have approved Leave of Absence from one of the GIA US-based on campus Title IV approved programmes, i.e. Graduate Gemologist (GG), Graduate Jeweler (GJ) or Jewelry Design & Technology (JDT), you will be eligible to receive HEERF II funds. Per CRRSAA guidance, GIA will prioritise students with 'exceptional need'. Those students with an eligible EFC (EFC = expected family contribution as determined on your official FAFSA) are eligible for the Group 1 HEERF II grant.

CARES/HEERF I

What is the Federal Cares Act?

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into US federal law on 27 March 2020. The Act provides financial compensation and support to multiple layers of the US economy, including educational institutions.

How much did GIA receive in CARES Act Grant Funding?

The CARES Act allocated nearly $14 billion to support US post-secondary educational institutions, and the US Department of Education applied a complex formula to determine the amount awarded to each institution. GIA received a grant of $176,142, at least 50% of which must be used to provide emergency cash grants to qualified students who have demonstrated financial need and experienced financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Which students are eligible to receive a grant?

Following the passage of the CARES Act, GIA organised a task force consisting of representatives from departments across the institute to review the legislation and guidance from the US Department of Education to make recommendations for the allocation and delivery of the funds to students. GIA’s senior leadership team approved the final recommendations.

Qualified students must have started instruction in the GIA US on-campus Graduate Gemologist (GG), Graduate Jeweler (GJ), or Jewelry Design & Technology (JDT) programmes, and have been an active student on 16/03/2020 (Carlsbad campus) or 12/03/2020 (New York campus). Within those three programmes, GIA has established two groups of students who qualify for the grant, following the US Department of Education guidance.

Group One: Students meeting the qualifications described above who have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The verification process must be complete and aid already calculated. Award amounts are based on the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as calculated in the FAFSA.

Group Two: Students meeting the qualifications described above who are eligible to file a FAFSA but have not done so. These students must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible to file a FAFSA: are a US citizen or eligible non-citizen; have a valid Social Security number; have registered with the US Selective Service if the student is male; have a high school diploma or GED, or have completed secondary education in an approved home school setting.

How will qualifying students be notified and receive funds?

Students will be notified via a secure email. Students must then complete the 'Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund' certification form and return it to GIA. A cheque will be sent to the student within 30 days.

Are there limitations on how students can spend the money?

As outlined by the US Department of Education, students must use the funds for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare expenses.