This is what you need to know about the COVID-19 emergency relief grants for college students

Houston – If you have a college student at home, or you are one, you may be able to get an emergency pandemic grant to help with expenses.

Congress set aside $6 billion for emergency grants for college students. This is money that does not have to be paid back. Colleges and universities all over the country received the money in May.

Your first stop should be your school's financial aid office because each university has its own application process. The federal government has given the schools a lot of leeway to decide who gets what money; But you have to have already filled out and turned in a Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA.

The grants are supposed to cover expenses caused by campus disruptions because of coronavirus closures. They're not intended for students or their parents who have lost jobs during the pandemic.

The law does not require students to submit proof of their expenses.Eligible costs may include food, housing, transportation, course materials, technology to take courses online, health care and childcare.

While colleges have a year to spend the money, most are trying to get it to students as soon as possible, so don’t wait to call your university to get an application.

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