UMD Student COVID Relief Grant

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) was signed into law on December 27, 2020. This law provides the U.S. Department of Education federal funds for higher education institutions to prevent, prepare for and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II. As part of the CRRSAA, the relief fund was created to provide universities with funds for financial aid grants for students and to cover institutional expenses related to the pandemic. The University of Maryland’s (UMD) approach to distributing these funds is student-centered.


UMD has received $10,745,357 funds from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund to distribute to eligible students as UMD Student COVID Relief Grants. These grants can be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to the pandemic, such as:

  • assistance with food purchases,
  • needs related to housing/rent/utilities,
  • assistance with health care (including mental health care) or child care expenses,
  • the payment of tuition or purchase of course materials, and/or
  • technology-related needs. 

A student must meet all the criteria listed below to qualify for the UMD Student COVID Relief Grant:

  • A student must use the funds to cover unexpected expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic that have impacted their educational experience, including the allowable expenses listed above.
  • An undergraduate or graduate student who is was enrolled on or after March 13, 2020.

* We are no longer accepting applications.

The UMD Student COVID Relief Grant is awarded using two methods:

  1. A portion of the funding will be provided based on financial need to eligible students using information from the 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  2. Another portion of the funding will be provided to eligible students using the UMD Student COVID Relief Grant application*.

* We are no longer accepting applications.

How much UMD Student COVID Relief Grant has been distributed to students?

As of June 9, 2021, $10,457,423 in UMD Student COVID Relief Grant through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) has been distributed to 7,566 students.


How many UMD students, who are enrolled for Spring 2021, are eligible to participate in the Federal Financial Aid Program?

There are approximately 34,869 UMD students, who are enrolled in the Spring 2021 semester, eligible to participate in the federal financial aid program.


What emergency relief funds are available for students who are not eligible for the UMD Student COVID Relief Grant?

Students who do not meet eligibility criteria may still seek financial assistance for emergency circumstances through the Student Crisis Fund through the Division of Student Affairs.


How much is each grant award?

Grant award amounts will vary based upon student need and availability of funding. We will attempt to provide as many grants as possible to eligible students.


Can a student request COVID relief funds more than once if the need arises?

Yes, students may apply* for COVID relief funds more than once. However, the funds are limited and will be awarded to students on a rolling basis until the funds are exhausted.

*We are no longer accepting applications. 


Do students have to repay their UMD Student COVID Relief Grant?

Students who receive a UMD Student COVID Relief Grant are not required to repay the grant.


Can a student use COVID relief funds to cover an outstanding balance on their UMD student bill?

Yes, students can use approved and provided COVID relief funds to cover any outstanding balance on their UMD student bill.


What will be required as justification for the grant? Will students be asked to show evidence that they have been adversely affected by COVID-19?

Students who wish to apply for the UMD Student COVID Relief Grant will be asked to submit the application*.

Applicants will be asked to provide a statement about how the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in unexpected financial hardship.

*We are no longer accepting applications. 


How quickly will students have access to their grant funds once they have been approved to receive them?

Approved grants will be paid through the student billing process.

Students who apply for the UMD Student COVID Relief Grant will be reviewed and decisions will be released 7 to 10 business days after receipt of the application. Applicants will receive an email once their application is reviewed. If an application is approved, eligible students can view the award using the student financial aid portal.

If you haven’t already done so, please sign up for a direct deposit. This will allow faster access to funds.