The UW will receive $39.7 million total from the federal CARES Act, with $19.85 million going directly to students, according to a briefing given to the Board of Regents on Thursday, April 9.
The Office of External Affairs expects to receive the funding by early next week. The U.S. Department of Education has advised schools to distribute these funds to students with a high financial need.
At the UW, this would start with Husky Promise students, but may expand to more students as administrators learn more information about disbursement mechanisms, and could be expanded if more funding is awarded, according to director of federal relations Sarah Martin Castro.
“Every school is going to do it differently,” she said. ”We’re going to be requesting more in upcoming stimulus packages; this issue is not going away.”
The BOR also heard a briefing from Dr. Paul Ramsey, the CEO of UW Medicine, which has received over $20 million in donations to an Emergency Response Fund to support efforts to fight COVID-19.
Since they began preparing to treat those with COVID-19 in late January, UW Medicine has modified many existing protocols to adapt and identify, isolate, and care for patients under investigation for the virus.
They have also established testing sites at five UW Medicine facilities around Seattle and the UW Virology lab is able to test up to 6,000 per day.
Representatives from the UW Athletic Department also briefed the BOR on its compliance with NCAA recruitment standards, and discussed the budget implications for student-athletes who had their seasons cut short by COVID-19.
Student-athletes are only eligible to play at the college-level for a certain number of seasons, but those who were unable to compete in their 2020 season were given another year of eligibility. The NCAA’s decision applies to all spring season athletes, but not winter season athletes who may have missed their postseason.
This has financial implications for scholarship budgets, as many athletes have financial aid from the UW that may have to be provided for an extra year.
President Ana Mari Cauce also attended the meeting, giving a rallying speech highlighting examples of resilience within the UW community, such as staff writing in chalk all over campus to support custodians who have continued coming to work during Washington’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order.
Congress awarded $14 billion in emergency relief to U.S. higher education institutions last …
Cauce also addressed the UW’s decision to cancel in-person graduation festivities for all three campuses, substituting it with an online ceremony and an invitation for the class of 2020 to physically walk with the class of 2021, calling it a “tough decision.” She also said that the invitation for a joint ceremony with the class of 2020 and 2021 was not set in stone.
“At this point whether it’ll be a ceremony of their own or whether they’ll join the class of 2021 marching, we’ll decide later once we know how many will participate,” she said.
Reach reporter Emma Scher at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @emma_scherr
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