Long Beach State officials are “hoping” to distribute funds to students in need beginning the week of April 20, according to President Jane Close Conoley.
It was announced last week that the university would be receiving a total of $41.7 million in coronavirus relief funding out of a total of $525 million set aside the California State University system.
Conoley said the university is still waiting for the federal government to release the funds.
“We are ready at our campus to make the funds available to all students who apply, but we’ll have to push our timeline to early next week,” Conoley said. “It’s not a campus decision but a federal delay.”
It is estimated that if the $41.7 million was divided equally between the student population at CSULB then each student would receive around $1,114, according to EdSource.
However, the school is planning on distributing to students who meet student emergency intervention criteria first. The criteria include displaced living, medical expenses due to illness, or loss of transportation.
“We have many students who were laid off from work on and off campus,” Conoley said. “We want to target students who we know are quite economically distressed and students who are newly distressed because they or their families have lost jobs.”
Conoley said the plan is to use $20 million of the funds for student aid now and then distribute the remaining amount as financial aid in future semesters.
Additionally, Conoley said the school has raised over $200,000 for its student emergency fund.
CSULB students may apply for funds at the student intervention website.
Since the funding was allocated by the federal government, all final decisions must be approved by it.
As of now, funds can be distributed to international, part-time and self-support students.
Undocumented students will not be eligible to receive funding, but the university does have non-federal sources available.
Expected budget cuts will not be impacted by the grant as it cannot be used for operational purposes.
Conoley said the university is hoping to keep losses between 5% to 10%, but acknowledged it may face up to 20% budget cuts come the 2020-21 academic year.
Conoley said university officials will continue working to get the funding to students as quickly as possible.
“We’re working with all the campuses of the CSU to be sure we are acting in similar ways so that students can be confident that they are being treated equitably,” she said. “Although it’s important to remember that the needs of students vary dramatically across the different universities.”