Federal Relief Act Offers Funding for Bemidji State University Students

Through the American Rescue Plan Act, a third round of financial assistance is available for Bemidji State University students who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In May 2021, the U.S. Department of Education announced that ARP funding is available for institutions of higher education to serve students and ensure learning continues during the COVID-19 pandemic. The ARP appropriated $164,042,000 to the Minnesota State system of colleges and universities, with $4,585,381 allocated to Bemidji State.

There will be three stages of ARP fund distribution. Award distribution began on Aug. 9 to students enrolled in Summer 2021 courses and will extend throughout the Fall 2021 and Spring 2022 semesters for enrolled students.

After a successful round of Summer 2021 distribution, the BSU Student Senate leadership chose to split the remaining ARP dollars between the fall and spring semesters using a 50/50 ratio.

Students eligible for Federal Pell Grants will automatically receive $1,115 and students whose expected family contribution is less than $15,000 will also receive awards of $860. Funding will be sent via mail or dispersed to student accounts on Sept. 23.

Additionally, students may also apply for individual relief awards up to $1000. Individual ARP grants are available to eligible DACA and international students as well. The application for individual ARP grants will be available Sept. 17 and will distributed on a rolling basis to eligible students.

To be eligible for Fall 2021 ARP funding, students cannot have dropped, withdrawn or had a last day of attendance before Sept. 4.

This round of funding was preceded by the April 2020 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act and December 2020 Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, both of which offered relief awards to BSU and NTC students.