Federal Financial Aid

Federal Financial Aid

Federal Financial Aid is a common way for students to pay for their education. The Soma Institute participates in a number of Federal Student Aid programs and assists students in applying to these programs.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Report Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students

September, 2020

The Soma Institute – The National School of Clinical Massage Therapy (OPE ID:  038913) received education stabilization funds under Section 18004(a)(1) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”), Public Law No: 116-136. This Fund Report applies to the student portion received under the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund that is designated exclusively for emergency financial aid grants to students.

The institution appreciates that Congress and the President have made these critical funds available for eligible students who have expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus pandemic. We take receipt of these federal funds seriously and are distributing them in accordance with the CARES Act and implementing guidance.

The institution is making the below information available for transparency purposes and in compliance with the U.S. Department of Education’s (“Department”) Electronic Announcement of May 6, 2020.[1] For questions or concerns regarding this Fund Report, please contact James Cussen, V.P. Operations & Financial Aid, at jcussen@soma.edu.

  1. The institution signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students. The institution has used, or intends 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.
  2. The total amount of funds that the institution will receive or has received from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students is $ 104,718.00. The total amount of emergency financial aid grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of this Fund Report is $ 104,718.00.
  3. The estimated total number of students at the institution eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, and thus eligible to receive emergency financial aid grants under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act, as of the date of this Fund Report is 138.
  4. The total number of students who have received an emergency financial aid grant under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of this Fund Report is 138.
  5. The methods to be used by the institution to determine which students receive emergency financial aid grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act are provided at CARES ACT GRANTS FOR SOMA STUDENTS.
  6. Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the emergency financial aid grants are provided at CARES ACT GRANTS FOR SOMA STUDENTS.

CARES ACT GRANTS FOR SOMA STUDENTS – Guidance Provided to Students

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, includes a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, or HEERF.  The fund provides $104,718 to help Soma students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19.

According to the Department of Education, students who are Title IV aid eligible and were enrolled at The Soma Institute on March 13, 2020 in what were intended to be face-to-face classes may be eligible for HEERF grants.

Soma students who may be eligible for HEERF grants were emailed an application to participate in the HEERF grant program.  Application deadline is July 31, 2020.  Applicants were asked to update their contact information and to attest or acknowledge  as follows:

Student Attestations and Acknowledgements

  1. Students must attest that they qualify for Title IV Federal Student Aid – The student must be either a U.S. Citizen or an eligible noncitizen, and the student must not be in default of a student loan nor owe money on a federal student grant.
  2. The Student has to acknowledge that they understand that the HEERF Emergency Grant Aid is intended to offset additional expenses related to the disruption of school operations (including eligible expenses for a student’s cost of attendance, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child care), and

The student has to confirm that they have experienced expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus.

  1. The student must confirm that they wish to be considered for a HEERF grant.
  2. The student must provide Soma with updated contact information: current mailing address, email address and telephone number.

The Soma Institute will verify the eligibility of Soma students to participate in The HEERF Grant fund of $104,718 and will divide the grant fund up equally among all qualified students.  Students must be active students or be on an approved Leave of Absence at the time of disbursement of the Grant fund in order to be eligible to receive a Grant disbursement.

The Deadline for Submission of this Application to participate in CARES Act Grant Funds is July 31, 2020.  Grant Funds are expected to be disbursed to Soma students by August 15, 2020.

Note:  In accordance with the guidance provided above, The Soma Institute disbursed CARES Act Grant Funds in the amount of $104,718 on August 21, 2020.  The fund was divided equally among 138 students, each student receiving a check for $758.83 ( See Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Report)

[1] See: https://ifap.ed.gov/electronic-announcements/050620HigherEdEmergencyReliefFundRptg