Update: COVID-19 Impacts on Financial Aid

Update: An edit has been made to this list on August 18, 2020. Financial Aid hours of operation are currently 8:30 am – 5 pm Monday-Friday. Visit stockton.edu/contactfinaid to email or schedule a phone call with our office.

Update: Edits have been made to this list on Thursday, May 14, 2020 and Tuesday, August 18, 2020. Students enrolled in the Spring 2020 semester and eligible to receive federal financial aid funds were able apply for the Stockton CARES Emergency Grant through May 15, 2020. A second round of applications was due by August 3, 2020. All application cycles are now closed and all funds have been disbursed. Learn more at stockton.edu/cares.

Update: An addition has been made to this list on Thursday, April 2, 2020. The deadline for current students to file a FAFSA to renew their State aid has been extended to June 1. See below for more details.

We are sure that many of you are wondering how COVID-19 will impact you and your financial aid. To help you to better understand this impact, our office has compiled a list of changes and updates to the institutional/federal financial aid processes. Please read the below carefully. Many passages are from their original sources listed within each section. All information presented is up to date as of Thursday, April 2, 2020.

FinAid Office Update:

Financial Aid hours of operation are currently 8:30 am – 5 pm Monday-Friday. Visit stockton.edu/contactfinaid to email or schedule a phone call with our office.

Closely monitor you goStockton email accounts and follow us on social media @stocktonfinaid for important information and updates.

Stockton CARES Emergency Grant:

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress with overwhelming, bipartisan support and signed into law by President Trump on March 27, 2020. Part of the funding package was marked for colleges and universities to provide direct cash assistance to students who were impacted by the reduced on-campus services resulting from the COVID-19 health emergency. In accordance with the statutory requirement, the funds may only 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 resulting from lost wages because you are not able to work on campus such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care).

The deadline to apply was Friday, May 15, 2020. The second round of applications has been completed. All applications were due by August 3. All application cycles are now closed and funds have been distributed.

Learn more at stockton.edu/cares.

State FAFSA Renewal Deadline:

On Wednesday, April 1, 2020, New Jersey Governor Phillip D. Murphy announced that the deadline for current students to file a FAFSA or complete an NJ Dreamers application to renew their State aid has been extended to June 1.

Students are still encouraged to file as soon as possible. The sooner students apply, the earlier they can find out about available State financial aid and make informed decisions about the 2020-2021 academic year.

To complete a FAFSA, click here. To complete a New Jersey Alternative Application for NJ Dreamers, click here.

For more information, please visit hesaa.org.

Virtual Learning, Housing, Meal Plans:

Beginning Wednesday, March 25, course instruction will be delivered remotely for the remainder of the semester. In addition, with some exceptions, students who currently reside on campus have been asked to move out of the campus residence halls and return home for the remainder of the Spring semester.

By the end of the semester, the University will process prorated housing, meal plan and transportation and safety fee credits for non-seniors (refunds for seniors) for 38 days of the Spring 2020 semester starting March 25. For details, see the FAQ section on stockton.edu/covid19

Federal Work Study:

Student workers in the Federal Work Study (FWS) program are eligible to receive pay for hours that were not worked in a time of disaster. Stockton has confirmed that the COVID-19 pandemic qualifies under this provision. Our office is in the process of contacting FWS supervisors with procedures. Please contact your supervisor for more information.

Veterans Benefits:

The House on Thursday, March 19, 2020 passed emergency legislation that will ensure student veterans continue to receive the full benefits of the GI Bill as colleges and universities across the country have shifted to online-only classes in response to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Senate approved the measure, President Trump approved and it became law on Saturday, March 21, 2020.

For more information, please visit congress.gov

Original Source: https://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/delivering-president-trumps-promise-secretary-devos-suspends-federal-student-loan-payments-waives-interest-during-national-emergency

Interest Rates & Payments on Federal Direct Loans:

All borrowers with federally held student loans will automatically have their interest rates set to 0% for a period of at least 60 days beginning March 13, 2020. In addition, each of these borrowers will have the option to suspend their payments for at least two months to allow them greater flexibility during the national emergency. This will allow borrowers to temporarily stop their payments without worrying about accruing interest.

Visit the U.S. Department of Education to learn more.

Original Source: https://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/delivering-president-trumps-promise-secretary-devos-suspends-federal-student-loan-payments-waives-interest-during-national-emergency

NJCLASS Loan Borrowers:

Governor Phil Murphy announced financial relief options for students and families repaying loans borrowed through the New Jersey College Loans to Assist State Students (NJCLASS) program. In recognition of the impact of the COVID-19 crisis and the potential disruption to New Jersey residents’ ability to keep pace with routine bills, the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA) will offer assistance to those who need help making regular payments to NJCLASS student loans due to a diminished income.

HESAA consistently supports borrowers struggling to make regular payments through the agency’s relief options. Those directly impacted by COVID-19 can apply for NJCLASS loan relief for temporary disability or unemployment. Applications for these relief options are available at https://www.hesaa.org/Documents/Relief%20Options/Unemployment.pdf and https://www.hesaa.org/Documents/NJCLASSTempDisabilityForm.pdf.

In addition, NJCLASS borrowers can apply for financial hardship relief. To assist individuals who are financially impacted by COVID-19 mitigation measures, but who are not eligible to receive unemployment or temporary disability assistance, HESAA is requesting that borrowers supplement their financial hardship application with a statement explaining how the impact of the COVID-19 virus response has caused their financial hardship. HESSA will review these applications with greater flexibility considering the impact of COVID-19. The NJCLASS loan application for financial hardship relief is available at https://www.hesaa.org/Documents/Relief%20Options/Financial%20hardship.pdf.

Learn more at hesaa.org.

Original Source: https://www.hesaa.org/Pages/HESAANewsPage.aspx?type=News&pid=173

HESAA Working Remotely:

Most HESAA staff are currently working remotely. If you need to contact them, send an email to Client_Services@hesaa.org and someone will work to assist you.

Learn more at hesaa.org.

FAFSA Fridays Cancelled:

In addition to all university meetings, trainings and events being cancelled or postponed through May 31st, all remaining FAFSA Friday sessions for the Spring 2020 semester have been cancelled; however, our office is still available to help. Please feel free to contact us at finaid@stockton.edu with any questions you may have and someone will work to respond as soon as possible.

Remember, the State Won’t Wait! File your 20-21 FAFSA by June 1, 2020! Anyone who misses this deadline will lose out on over $7500 of free money for the 20-21 academic year, if eligible. File at fafsa.gov.

**Note: We will provide updates to financial aid impacts as they become available. Please monitor Stockton University’s Coronavirus/Emergency Management page at stockton.edu/covid19 for daily institutional updates.

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