CARES Act Student Information

Student Eligibility

Mississippi State University has received CARES Act funding through the U.S. Department of Education. These funds are to assist students who have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations as a result of COVID-19.  The U.S. Department of Education has mandated certain requirements that a student must meet in order to be eligible for CARES Act funding. The requirements that a student must meet are:  

  • Taking on-campus classes during the spring 2020 semester and not enrolled as a distance education student  
  • Must be enrolled as of the last day of the spring 2020 semester 
  • Meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards   
  • Taking coursework that is eligible for Federal financial aid   
  • Be fully admitted into a program of study that is eligible for Federal financial aid   
  • For undeclared students, have less than 75 earned hours  
  • File a Free Application of Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the 2019-20 academic year and be eligible for Federal financial aid which includes, but is not limited to:
    • Have a valid social security number
    • If male, be registered for U.S. Selective Service
    • Not in default on a Federal student loan
    • Not owe a repayment on Federal student aid
    • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen     

Students who meet the requirements will receive an email from MSU directing them to their myState portal. Once there, the students will need to complete the online CARES Act application certifying that they have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations. The Financial Aid Office will evaluate each student’s eligibility for the CARES Act grant. The deadline to complete the online application and the FAFSA is June 1, 2020.    

CARES Act funds will be awarded to students that qualify. The funds will be sent to students by direct deposit (if setup) or by check to their home address. If a student has a current balance owed to Mississippi State University, they will still receive their full CARES Act grant.  

CARES Act Program Overview at Mississippi State University

The U. S. Department of Education (DOE) has provided CARES Act funding to Mississippi State University (MSU) to assist eligible students with expenses related to the disruption in campus operations. MSU signed and returned the certification agreement to the DOE, whereby the institution will use 50% of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide emergency financial aid grants to students. Therefore, MSU will disburse $8,928,054 in CARES Act funding directly to students who meet the qualifications set by the DOE. As of Sunday, July 5, 2020, MSU had disbursed $8,928,073 in CARES Act funding to 11,572 students who met the qualifications.   

There were an estimated 13,686 MSU students who attended classes during the spring 2020 semester that are or could have been eligible for CARES Act funding. These students have met or will need to meet the requirements for federal aid under Section 484 in the Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965.   

MSU is using the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) which is calculated for each student who completes the 2019-20 FAFSA and meets all the other CARES Act requirements, to determine an award amount. For those students that qualify for CARES Act funding, the award ranges between $736.91 and $836.91 based on the student’s EFC and when the FAFSA was completed.  

We hope this financial assistance will help students during these uncertain times. Mississippi State University is committed to supporting students who need our assistance. The following website provides students with updates and information about other resources:

The Financial Aid Office
Mississippi State University