Piggy bank with gold coins

Midwestern University will again earmark 100% of an estimated $2.8 million in Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) apportioned to the university by recently passed federal legislation to support the nearly 7,000 health care professions students enrolled at its campuses in Downers Grove, Illinois, and Glendale.

Under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act, passed by Congress and signed into law on Dec. 27, qualifying educational institutions are required to spend at least the same dollar amount on student grants as determined in the CARES Act. 

This program has been designated the Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds II (HEERF II). The relief funds are to be disbursed to students in the form of cash grants for any component of their cost of attendance and emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus.  

The remaining funds may be used by the institution to offset additional costs related to COVID-19. However, Midwestern University’s administration has elected instead to apportion the entirety of its HEERF II funding, an estimated $2.8 million, to university students as need-based grants.

Midwestern has already awarded and disbursed approximately $2 million in HEERF II funds to students. This is in addition to awarding all of the $2.25 million in prior HEERF funding to students in 2020. To date, Midwestern has provided over $4 million in HEERF grants directly to students.

“The entire Midwestern University community recognizes the significant financial challenges faced by our health care students during this unique period of our history,” remarked Kathleen H. Goeppinger, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Midwestern University. 

“Because we have positioned ourselves through careful planning to safeguard our university’s infrastructure during challenging times such as these, we have the wonderful opportunity to commit the entirety of our CARES Act funds to our students. We are proud to support our students, as they will be part of tomorrow’s health care team, working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic and other health care challenges.”

The CRRSA Act is a major COVID-19-related law included as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. The law authorizes $82 billion to education through the Education Stabilization Fund, with $23 billion specifically for higher education. Midwestern University is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.