Skip to Content

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grant

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provides one-time funding to institutions to provide emergency relief grants to students who incur emergency expenses due to coronavirus such as health care, mental health care, child care, and any component of your cost of attendance. The availability of this award is not continuous.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grant (HEERF II)

To fulfill the Department of Education’s guidance, UofSC issued grants to students across all student levels as determined by the FAFSA, with amounts ranging from $400 to $800. Pell Grant recipients received $800 and all other eligible students received $400. Different from previous  guidance within the CARES Act, the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 allows students who are enrolled exclusively in online programs to receive assistance.

In early June, any HEERF II funding that had been declined or not accepted by awardees was reallocated to students who accepted an initial HEERF II award and maintained eligibility for Title IV federal student financial aid.  This additional award was $183 per recipient.

Awarding Criteria

UofSC received an official 2020-2021 FAFSA of April 12, 2021.

Students had to be enrolled as degree seeking for spring 2021 term as of April 12, 2021.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grant (HEERF III)

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 provides institutions with additional emergency grant funding for students in response to coronavirus. UofSC issued emergency relief fund grants to students in three tiers, prioritizing students by exceptional need. Pell Grant recipients received $2,100. Students with an official EFC of 11,000 or less and no Pell Grant eligibility received $1,100. All other regular students received $600. To be eligible for any of the three tiers, students had to be enrolled in at least one course for Fall 2021 as of September 17. Awards are for the Fall 2021 semester only. 

Frequently Asked Questions about HEERF Grants

Expenses related to any component of your cost of attendance or any emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus such as tuition, food, housing, health care, mental health care, and child care are all included as part of the criteria for the HEERF II Grant. 

Eligible students will have the awarded posted to Self Service Carolina. After acceptance of the award, it will be sent as a refund through direct deposit if you have direct deposit set up or you will receive a refund check in the mail. 

For HEERF II, eligible students were selected automatically based on their enrollment during the Spring 2021. For HEERF III, eligible students are automatically selected based on their enrollment during the Fall 2021 semester. Students must also meet the additional criteria as stated above. 

If you owe a balance on your student account, you can use HEERF III funds to reduce or possibly pay in full your account balance by completing the HEERF II/III Consent form. Students whose award is more than their student account charges will receive a refund for the difference. If you wish to have the credit applied, please complete the HEERF II/III Consent form located at HEERF II/III Consent to Apply to Student Account BalanceReturn the form to the Bursar’s Office via the email address or fax number listed at the top of the form. 

No, the HEERF II/III Grant does not have to be repaid. 

No, the HEERF funds will not affect your eligibility for aid for Fall 2021 or Spring 2022. 

HEERF Reporting


Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.