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COVID-19: Financial Aid & Billing

This web page addresses frequently asked questions related to financial assistance and billing.


How did Northwest allocate the HEERF Institutional funds?  (updated 4/8/21)

Review the budget and expenditure reports required per HEERF CARES Act Section 18004(a)(1) Institutional funds portion by clicking the links below.

This information is intended to provide needed communication for students and families while meeting federal reporting requirements for the receipt and use of these funds.

Is Northwest offering additional scholarships or financial opportunities due to COVID-19?   (updated 4/8/21)

Northwest is committed to maintaining a level of financial assistance that allows the University to remain an affordable college choice.

The University is adjusting the grade-point average (GPA) requirement for renewal of the admission-based merit scholarships (https://www.nwmissouri.edu/finaid/renewal/) by 0.5 GPA points. For example, as a one-time adjustment for fall 2021, a scholarship that normally requires a 3.5 cumulative Northwest GPA will require a 3.0 cumulative Northwest GPA for renewal entering the 2021-22 academic year. The University has also committed to expanding eligibility for the American Dream Grant and has committed to allocating additional funds for need-based financial assistance. 

How did Northwest identify and provide HEERF emergency grants to eligible students?  (updated 4/8/21)

Northwest identified all HEERF-eligible students in May 2020 and offered payments to all 3,855 eligible students on May 8, 2020. The University provided each student with the opportunity to self-certify eligibility, and students were instructed to opt out if they did not or would not meet the conditions of the payment. After accounting for opt outs, the University provided $2,354,700 to 3,850 students through this initial effort. Additional emergency grant payments are being provided on an as-needed, case-by-case basis to qualifying students who request assistance from the Office of Scholarships and Financial Assistance. 

As of Dec. 31, 2020, additional emergency grant funding of $22,300 had been provided to 81 students. In some cases, a student could have been eligible for an initial emergency grant payment in May 2020 and also receive an additional emergency grant payment prior to Dec. 31, 2020. 

As of April 1, 2021, a remaining HEERF I amount of $17,095 was combined with available HEERF II funds, based on Federal guidance received and awarded to students. Additional information related to the HEERF II distribution process will be provided once reporting guidance is received from the U.S. Department of Education. 

This information is intended to provide needed communication for students and families while meeting federal reporting requirements for the receipt and use of these funds.

How did Northwest determine the HEERF award amount that could be offered to each student?  (updated 4/8/21)

Northwest initially used estimated living expense costs calculated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and published by the College Board to determine a reasonable amount of additional living expenses a student would incur from the campus disruption due to COVID-19.

In our effort to prioritize students with the greatest need, we determined a higher payment amount for our Pell Grant-eligible students was appropriate. All HEERF-eligible students were offered an initial emergency grant payment of $450 or $875.

An additional total of $6,800 was paid to 10 students during the summer 2020 term, with award amounts ranging from $450 to $1,500. 

During the fall 2020 term, quarantined or isolated federal work employees and institutional student employees were encouraged to request additional HEERF I emergency grant funds, if needed. This effort resulted in 71 students receiving emergency grant payments, totaling $15,500, with award amounts ranging from $100 to $450.

During January 2021, a remaining HEERF I amount of $17,095 was combined with available HEERF II funds, based on federal guidance, and awarded to students.  Additional information related to the HEERF II distribution process will be provided once reporting guidance is received from the U.S. Department of Education. 

In total, students have received $2,396,395 in HEERF I emergency grant payments.

This information is intended to provide needed communication for students and families while meeting federal reporting requirements for the receipt and use of these funds.

Will students be charged room and board for a full semester?  (updated 12/18/20)

Students living in residence halls during the fall 2020 semester are charged the semester price because the halls remained open for the duration of the semester, which ended Dec. 11.

The start and end dates of Northwest’s spring semester, as well as the length of time students will be residing on campus, have not changed, and therefore Northwest is not adjusting food or housing costs. Northwest also is adding nine meal plan days, at no cost, to students with Campus Dining meal plans.

Will Northwest reduce fees associated with co-curricular activities if such activities cannot take place due to COVID-19 restrictions?  (updated 12/8/20)

Co-curricular activities continue to take place at Northwest, though they may be modified to meet COVID-19 mitigation measures.

Northwest's Office of Student Involvement hosts a variety of virtual activities during the pandemic and offers guidance to help student organizations meet and continue fulfilling their objectives virtually.

What is the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)?   (updated 10/1/20)

As part of the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the HEERF provides funding for emergency grants to students whose lives have been disrupted and are facing financial challenges to meet their most basic needs.

Northwest signed and returned the required HEERF certification and agreement on April 28, 2020. The University will use the required $2,396,395 of these CARES Act funds to provide emergency financial aid grants to students.

This information is intended to provide needed communication for students and families while meeting federal reporting requirements for the receipt and use of these funds.