Recently, it was announced that students at the Southern University at Shreveport campus were awarded $5,000 through the CARES Act. Many students on campus began to wonder whether or not Southern University would also offer the act for the 2021–2022 academic year.
The Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus bill that was passed into law in March of 2020. The act was created to assist with the major economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. From that $2.2 trillion, about $14 billion was given to the Office of Postsecondary Education to specifically distribute funds to students at colleges and universities. The news of SUSLA students receiving the act this year made students at SUBR question why they have not received anything yet.
"It was weird to hear that SUSLA got the act but not us," said Valerie Johnson, a junior English major. "The act really helps students provide for themselves since the pandemic hit a lot of people hard economically."
When asked about if the CARES Act was being administered this year, the cashier’s office revealed that money is not currently available. "The money is not here on campus yet money- wise because it has not been recorded. Our office records the money that is deposited on behalf of the campus and then we disburse money based on the students' refunds," said Hannah Webb, the bursar for Southern University.
Webb made a call to the Vice Chancellor of Finance and Administration, Benjamin Pugh, to ask about any recent updates on the act. He responded with, "There is funding available, and they are anticipating disbursing it before the Bayou Classic."
"I’m glad that we are going to get the act this year too; it really helped me last year," said Kennedy Browne, a sophomore computer science major. Students can expect to hear more updates about funds being distributed to assist them since the CARES act has been announced. The cashier’s office stated that as soon as the funds are issued to their office, students will see the awarded amounts based upon their refunds.