U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, seen with USVI students above, announced today more than $63 million in new federal assistance for 47 institutions of higher education under the Emergency Assistance to Institutions of Higher Education program. The program provides funding to institutions and their students in areas directly affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, or Maria or the 2017 California wildfires.
The University of the Virgin Islands will receive $11,174,451 as part of the program, according to the release.
“This emergency assistance will provide vital resources for those whose lives were impacted by disasters in 2017,” said Ms. DeVos. “As those on the ground work every day to recover, the Department of Education will continue to be a partner and resource to get institutions, students and faculty back on their feet.”
The funding allocations were determined using information provided by each institution regarding the damage and recovery costs incurred by the disasters. Allocations also prioritized students who are homeless or at risk of homelessness due to displacement. Funds will be awarded following receipt of final application data, according to the release.
Congress appropriated $100 million for this program, and funds are available for obligation by the department until 2022. The first $63,059,988 has been allocated to the institutions listed below. The department anticipates evaluating additional applications from these institutions and others as their regions recover. Staff will work closely with applicants to assess their needs so as to distribute remaining funds.
Congress also appropriated up to $75 million for the Defraying Costs of Enrolling Displaced Students program, which helps institutions recover the costs of generously supporting students who were displaced by the disasters. To date, $5,384,186 has been awarded, and the Department will evaluate all additional applications through October 31, 2018.