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May 28, 2020

CARES Act Funding for Triton Students

Triton College will receive up to $4.2 million dollars through the passage of the CARES Act, federal legislation that brings necessary financial relief to both students and higher education. As mandated by federal guidelines, approximately $2.1 million will go directly to eligible Triton College students who have been impacted by the coronavirus and the challenges of a remote learning environment. Students who receive dollars are expected to use the funds for the following expenses:

  • food, housing, and utilities;
  • course materials, technology needs, and internet service;
  • healthcare and childcare.

Triton College will implement its first stage of distribution as an across-the-board allocation of $600 to eligible students.

Triton students eligible to receive this first allocation of CARES Act funding must meet the following criteria:

  • Triton College degree-seeking students or certificate-seeking students enrolled in programs located at the River Grove campus for at least three or more credit hours as of March 16, 2020.
  • Completion of a 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 FAFSA and up-to-date financial aid file.
  • Students enrolled in the full spring semester as of March 16, 2020.
  • Students enrolled in the second seven-week session as of March 16, 2020.
  • Enrolled in at least one face-to-face class.

Students enrolled completely online in the Spring 2020 semester are ineligible. Students do not need to be enrolled in summer courses to receive their $600 allocation.

The CARES Act enables Triton College to establish an emergency aid fund for students as the second step of the CARES Act student allocation. For students who have financial needs greater than $600 or for those who have not yet filed a 2020-2021 FAFSA, the establishment of an emergency aid fund will allow students to submit an application for financial assistance. Students must complete the FAFSA to document their eligibility for the emergency aid. Application materials for emergency aid will be available by July 1, 2020 and will be accepted on an on-going basis through December 2020 or as funds remain available.

If I am eligible to receive CARES Act funds will I be notified?
To ensure eligibility, be sure to have a FAFSA on file. You will receive an email to your Triton email address detailing how you will receive your CARES Act check by mail to your permanent address. You may also receive a text message to the phone number we have associated with your account.

Are CARES Act funds a loan? Will it need to be repaid?
No, the money students will receive are from a federal grant and does not have to be repaid.

If I receive a $600 check from CARES Act funds, do I have to use it for tuition?
No, the federal guidelines make it clear that students use the funding for on-going costs associated with remote learning. When you cash your check, you will be agreeing to use the money in a way related to food, housing, utilities, course materials, technology, internet service, healthcare, and/or childcare.

To be eligible I have to have a FAFSA on file. Does that mean CARES Act money counts against my financial package?
No. CARES Act funds are not a part of your financial aid package and do not impact your eligibility for regular financial aid including grants, scholarships, and loans.

If I was not eligible to receive the $600 allocation, what should I do right now?
If you are going to be a continuing Triton College student in the fall, FILE YOUR 2020-2021 FAFSA IMMEDIATELY. Then, watch the Triton College website for the availability of an application to the emergency aid fund.

For more information on the CARES Act, please email caresact@triton.edu.