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CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund

We know the COVID-19 pandemic has interrupted many daily routines, and some have found themselves in distressing predicaments. To help alleviate that stress, Western Dakota Tech has launched the WDT Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act for Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF), an emergency aid program for students who may be experiencing difficulties with expenses related to COVID-19 campus disruptions. These emergency grants will assist students experiencing financial hardships with expenses related to the disruption of campus operations, including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance such as (not a complete list):
  • Assistance with the purchase of food
  • Needs related to housing/rent/utilities
  • The purchase of course materials
  • Technology related needs
  • Assistance with health care and/or child care expenses
Quarterly Budget & Expenditure Reporting

Western Dakota Tech signed and returned the certification and agreement form for the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) on April 13, 2020, and intends to use 50% of the mandated amount of the emergency financial aid grants for students. The amount that WDT has received or will receive under the HEERF student portion is $431,940. 



Using these funds, Western Dakota Tech mailed a check to 603 Spring 2020 students on May 15, 2020 and 174 Summer 2020 students on June 19, 2020 that were eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965. As of June 19, 2020, Western Dakota Tech has disbursed the full amount to Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 students. As of October 3, 2020, this final quarterly posting is the final report that covers all remaining HEERF fund expenditures for Section 18004(a)(1) Student Portion funds.

  • Spring 2020 – 603 students received $650 (total = $391,950)
  • Summer 2020 – 172 students received $216.77 | 2 students received $216.78 (total = $37,718)
  • 5 students qualified for additional funds based off of their application that was submitted and the committee approved (total = $2.272)
There were 695 eligible students and all 695 have received Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF). Total disbursed:  $431,940


Who is Eligible for the WDT Emergency CARES Grant?
A student must meet all criteria listed to qualify:

  • Currently enrolled for the Spring 2020 semester in a certificate, diploma or degree program eligible for Federal Financial Aid
  • Be in good academic standing and maintaining satisfactory academic progress with the college
  • A student who has been adversely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic and has an emergency need
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or must meet the definition of an eligible non-citizen based on federal financial aid requirements
  • Be otherwise eligible for Title IV aid as required by the CARES Act, which is determined by filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If you have not yet filed a FAFSA, you will need to complete one in order to verify eligibility by May 12, 2020.  (Contact the Financial Aid Office if you have questions on applying for FAFSA – 605.718.2988 or

Who is Not Eligible for the WDT Emergency CARE'S GRANT?

  • Students enrolled in a non-degree program
  • Students that are enrolled in a dual enrollment course(s)
  • Students not in good standing with Federal Financial Aid
  • Students enrolled exclusively online (i.e., in all online classes) on or before March 13, 2020
*** The funds must be used to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus that have impacted a student's educational experience, including the allowable expenses listed.

Application Process for Additional Funds

  • Apply for CARES Grant:
    Log on to MyWDT and complete the WDT CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Application located on the Financial Aid Tab. Applications should take approximately five minutes to complete. As part of the application process,  you will be asked to provide:

    • Name, Student ID, email address and phone number
    • Demonstrate the expenses related to disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, health care and childcare expenses (Note: coronavirus was declared a national emergency on March 13, 2020)

    Application Review Process:

    • Requests for additional funding assistance will be reviewed by the WDT Financial Aid Office
    • Students may be asked to provide additional information or documentation to support their request
    • You will receive an approval or denial email additional request no later than June 5, 2020.

    The funds must be used to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus that have impacted a student's educational experience, including the allowable expenses listed above.

    Funds are limited, and priority will be given to those who complete their application by May 12, 2020

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