Coronavirus (COVID-19): Important Financial Aid Updates and FAQs
The Office of Student Financial Aid remains open and is available to assist you with your questions about your financial aid and scholarships.
You can reach us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or calling us us at 313-577-2100. You can check the status of your financial aid award and any outstanding requirements in Academica.
These FAQs were last updated on 4/9/2021.
WSU CARES II funding
WSU CARES II Block Grant
The WSU CARES II Block Grant is made available under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA). These funds are intended to assist students with educational costs such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care), child care or emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus. WSU is required to spend a minimum of $9,653,092.00 on student grants.
We recognize that students who currently receive high-need federal financial aid in the form of a Federal Pell grant may continue to have increased need. In addition, we have traditionally offered need-based grants to undergraduates with an EFC up to 9000, as we acknowledge that this group of students may also have increased need.
Students in these categories will automatically receive a WSU CARES II Block Grant. Students who have a balance due or a hold on their account will still receive a full grant. They can, but are not required to, use their grant to pay down their balance or resolve any holds. An electronic consent form is available for this purpose.
WSU CARES II funds will be allocated in the following manner to students who meet the criteria when the award is made at the beginning of April 2021:
Enrollment status in Winter 2021
Undergraduate with EFC 0-5712
Undergraduate with EFC 5713-9000
Half-time or less
Total number of WSU CARES II Block Grant awards
Total number of students who have been awarded a WSU CARES II Block Grant: 8,068
Total amount of WSU CARES II Block Grants awarded to students: $7,116,500
WSU CARES II emergency relief application
We have set aside the remaining portion of the University's student share of CRRSAA funds for students in crisis.
The CRRSAA and HEERF funding cannot be used for international students or undocumented students. Eligible students will meet the following criteria:
- Have a 2020-21 FAFSA on file that confirms US citizenship or eligible non-citizenship status.
- Current enrollment at WSU
An application will be available in mid-April.
WSU CARES I funding
Funding from the student portion of the WSU CARES Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund has been exhausted.
The WSU CARES Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund is intended to assist students with urgent financial needs directly related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. Needs may include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare. This is federal funding that has been made available under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).
WSU signed and returned to the US Department of Education, the Certification and Agreement with the assurance that we intend to use no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students. WSU has received $9,653,092 from the US Department of Education to be used to provide emergency grants to students.
Students who apply via our WSU CARES Application are reviewed on a first-come-first-served basis to determine eligibility. The application is used to document that the student has expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare).
Students who receive an award are advised upon approval of their application that the CARES Act funding is to assist with their expenses related to the coronavirus.
Estimated number of students eligible to participate in Title IV programs: 14,226
|Total number of students who have received a CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grant||2,512||5,974||6,302||6,763||6,988||7,549||7,658|
|Total amount of CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students||$2,206,500||$5,735,050||$6,161,000||$7,007,400||$7,336,450||$8,067,900||$9,653,092|
The Office of Student Financial Aid continues to award these funds and the application will be available until funding is exhausted.
WSU CARES I funding application
The application period for students affected by the pandemic disruption during the winter semester ended July 31, 2020. The WSU CARES Higher Education Emergency Relief Funding application for students enrolled in the 2020-21 academic year is closed. Awards were made until funding was exhausted.
2020-21 WSU CARES Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Application - the application is closed
Information and the application for the - 2020-21 WSU Student Emergency Grant Application.
Under U.S. Department of Education rules for the program, these funds can be awarded to students who are eligible for federal financial aid. This includes undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students enrolled at WSU and pursuing degree programs.
- To be eligible to receive an award in the 2020-21 academic year, you must be a currently enrolled student at Wayne State University who is enrolled for at least one credit during the fall 2020 semester. Note: Students who have graduated are not eligible for this award.
- To be eligible to receive an award in the 2019-20 academic year, you must have been a currently enrolled student at Wayne State University who was enrolled for at least one credit during the winter 2020 semester when the campus disruption occurred. Note: The 2019-20 award period ended in August 2020.
- Have a FAFSA on file and be eligible for federal financial aid
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen
- Be enrolled in a program that is not exclusively an online program
- Have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child-care
- Complete all application questions in full
If you have graduated and are no longer enrolled, you are not eligible for CARES Act funding.
If you are eligible to file a FAFSA and need assistance, we encourage you to file the 2020-21 FAFSA online at studentaid.gov.
If you don't qualify based on the eligibility criteria, you may request assistance from the WSU Student Emergency Grant fund. The Student Emergency Grant offers limited emergency financial assistance to currently enrolled students who are unable to meet immediate, essential expenses because of temporary hardship related to an unexpected situation.
Looking for other types of assistance? See the resources on our Resources for low-income students web pages.
WSU CARES I - award decisions
We will make every effort to have a decision within one to two days; however, depending on volume of applications this timeframe may be extended. After award approval, you can expect funding within three days if you are signed up for direct deposit, paper checks will be mailed within the week. Sign-up for direct deposit in Academica.
Awards will be made on a first-come, first-served basis and preference will be given to students with documented need.
Students who did not receive an award in the 2019-20 school year will be given first priority for remaining funds available in the 2020-21 school year.
Every effort will be made to have a decision within one to two business days; however, depending on volume of applications this timeframe may be extended. As our funding is limited, WSU cannot guarantee that all applications submitted will receive an award.
WSU CARES I - use of funds
Charges or balances owed to WSU cannot be deducted from WSU CARES I funding, under any circumstances. Please check your account in Academica for up to date balance information. If you would like to use your WSU CARES Act funding to pay your balance, you may do so via any of the WSU accepted payment methods available on the Office of the Bursar website.
How can I view/submit my financial aid requirements?
There are multiple ways to submit documents to us without having to come to our office. Check your financial aid requirements in Academica. Many of our forms are electronic and can be submitted to us directly. Documents without social security numbers or other personally identifiable information can also be emailed to us at email@example.com. If your forms are not electronic, you can use the link below. Documents submitted via this link will be reviewed and identified before your requirements are updated in Academica.
What if I have changes in my income due to COVID-19?
We recognize that students and their families may have extenuating financial circumstances that the standard need analysis form (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, FAFSA) does not consider. If you have had a change in your income due to COVID-19 and would like us to consider a making a change in your FAFSA EFC, please complete this form and submit it along with an explanation and supporting documentation. If approved, a change in your EFC may make you eligible for need-based financial aid and student loans.
If you have had changes in your family income due to other circumstances, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am worried about my merit scholarship renewal, should I file an appeal?
We recognize the unprecedented challenges you may be facing at this time. To assist you, we have temporarily reduced the merit scholarship renewal requirements for the 2021-22 academic year. In order to remain eligible for your scholarship, you must meet satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards and pass at least 24 credit hours in the fall 2020 and winter 2021 semesters. SAP standards include earning a cumulative 2.0 GPA and completing 67% of all attempted coursework in your degree program.
This policy change applies to the following awards: President's Award, Warrior Award, Gold Award, Distinguished Award, Detroit Leadership Award, Green Award, Scholar Award, Anthony Wayne Scholarship, Scholars Day Award, Honors Dean's Award, Warrior Transfer Award, Gold Transfer Award, Green Transfer Award, Pathway Award, and Born to Be a Warrior Award.
This is a temporary policy change to the original terms and conditions of your award.
I am worried about my tuition pledge program renewal, should I appeal?
To assist you at this challenging time, we are temporarily reducing renewal requirements for the 2021-22 academic year for the WSU tuition pledge programs and the WSU Promise Grant. We are temporarily waiving the requirements to pass a certain number of credit hours in the 2020-21 academic year in order to retain the award for 2021-22. In order to remain eligible for your scholarship you must meet satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards. SAP standards include earning a cumulative 2.0 GPA and completing 67% of all attempted coursework in your degree program. The FAFSA and EFC requirements still apply.
This policy change applies to the following awards: Heart of Detroit, Wayne Access and Born to Be a Warrior tuition pledge programs and the WSU Promise Grant.
This is a temporary policy change and awards will be renewed for the 2022-23 academic year if you meet the original terms and conditions of your award.
What happens to my financial aid if I elect to change an earned grade to an N or P?
Grades that have been converted to a P (Pass) or N (No credit) will not increase or decrease your GPA. These courses are included in the pace calculation of your Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) status. A grade of "P" counts as credits attempted and earned. A grade of "N" counts towards credits attempted and no credits are earned. All current SAP guidelines are still in place and must be followed. However, we will consider reasons for withdrawal on a case-by-case basis when reviewing SAP appeals. We understand these are difficult times and will be reviewing appeals with this in mind.
There are no credit hours earned for an N grade. If you fail to earn any credits in all courses in a semester for which you received financial aid, WSU is required to determine if you "earned" the federal financial aid you received.
Contact the Office of Student Financial Aid if you have questions about how a switch may affect your financial aid.
If I withdraw due to a COVID-19 related circumstance and I don't meet SAP, will this negatively affect my aid eligibility?
No. Leniency will be provided to students who withdraw due to a COVID-19 related circumstance. File a satisfactory academic progress (SAP) appeal and provide information about your COVID-19 circumstance.
I rely on a work-study job for income throughout the semester. Can I still be paid while classes are held remotely?
Many Wayne State students rely on work-study or student assistant wages to meet their financial needs. Federal law includes provisions for us to make federal work-study payments under certain limited circumstances. These circumstances include when the student is unable to continue a work-study job because face-to-face classes have been canceled. We continued to pay those enrolled students that were currently working through the end of the winter 2020 semester.
The student must have submitted their timesheet every pay period with their expected work hours based on their existing work schedule. The timesheet approval process did not change. Employers are responsible for keeping track of the student's actual or expected work hours and approving timesheets. This process was only for currently employed students until the end of the winter 2020 semester.
CARES Act and Unemployment: The Federal CARES Act expanded eligibility for unemployment benefits.
- Where can I get more information about COVID-19 and its impact on WSU?
Where can I get information on new options for my federal student loan payments?
Federal Student Aid - Coronavirus and Forbearance Info for Students, Borrowers, and Parents
- How can I get technical assistance?