Cares Act Funding


We're here to answer your questions about the federal stimulus funds available to OCC students.  Please review the FAQ's below for details on who is eligible and the process for receiving funds.    

1.  Who is eligible to receive the money? 

Students eligible to receive Cares Act will automatically be identified and funds disbursed. Funding amounts are based upon an institutional matrix that considers the EFC.

As a State University of New York (SUNY) institution, OCC is using the following SUNY guidelines to determine eligible students:

  • Students enrolled for the Spring ’20 semester as of March 15, 2020 or Fall '20 semester as of August 31, 2020. 
  • Not concurrently enrolled in high school 
  • Students completed the FAFSA and it’s on file at OCC for either 2019-20 for Spring ‘20 semester or 2020-21 for Fall ‘20 semester and have met all eligibility requirements for federal (Title IV) financial aid

2.  How much will I get? 

Students meeting the eligibility criteria in question #1 will be allocated funds based on their estimated family contribution (EFC) as recorded on the Federal Application for Financial Aid (FAFSA) on file with OCC. 

3.  When will I get it? 

Once the funds are released and transmitted to OCC from the federal government, OCC will process the funding, review the applications, and issue the funds to eligible students. After this point, applications can continue to be submitted until the funding runs out.   

4.  How will I get the money? 

OCC will deposit the funds in the bank account the student has on file. For students without a bank account on file, a check will be sent to the student’s permanent address on file. It is important that all students confirm that this information is accurate. To review the current information and provide updates, please review your account in WebAdvisor.  

5. Do I have to use the money for college expenses? 

The funds are intended to help students with expenses incurred from the disruption of campus operations due to the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak, including eligible expenses impacting a student’s cost of attendance like food, housing, technology, course materials, medical expenses, childcare, and transportation. While students have the discretion to use the funding as they need it, particularly for basic needs, paying college expenses helps students maintain momentum toward their goal of completing a college degree.  

6.  What if I’m a dependent on my parents’ tax return? 

Funding is for currently enrolled college students, both those who are listed as a dependent as well as those who are independent.