COVID-19 Student Emergency Funding

In response to the nationwide COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak, University of Detroit Mercy is working hard to meet the unique needs of students on an individual basis and is taking immediate action to ensure safety is the priority. The COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund is made possible through the generous donations of Detroit Mercy faculty, staff, alumni and donors.

Given the current circumstances, the COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund team will work to maximize individual relief funds. Students should be prepared to provide thorough and detailed information regarding funding needs.

Law Students and Dental Students should refer to the professional schools' websites for Emergency Funding procedures.

March 22, 2021 — HEERF II Awarding Criteria

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) student grants made under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) were made available to students to be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care), or child care.  Unlike the CARES Act, the CRRSAA requires that institutions prioritize students with exceptional need, such as students who receive Pell Grants. 

Awards were made to students who met the following criteria: 

  • Enrolled at least half time for Winter 2021 
    • Dual enrolled students were omitted 
  • Submitted a valid FAFSA (calculated EFC) 
  • Is a citizen or permanent resident of the U.S. 


  • Students with an EFC between 0-5711 (Pell eligible EFC range) were awarded $550 
  • Students with an EFC greater than 5711 were awarded $425 

Students were emailed award notices with the amount of their award and that payments to students would begin the week of April 5, 2021.  Student were also instructed that they could submit an authorization if they wanted the payment made toward their outstanding winter 2021 balance.  The deadline to elect payments to be made to student accounts is March 31, 2021.

Fund Authorization

The HEERF II funds can be used to pay current account balances, or the funds can be paid to you. If you have a balance for Winter 2021 and would like the grant applied to your account, you must submit an authorization for the funds to be paid to your account. The full amount of the grant will be applied to your account balance. If there are funds remaining after your account is paid, the excess will be refunded to you. You must complete this authorization by March 31, 2021.

To access the electronic authorization form:

  • Log into your account
  • Click on Student
  • Click on Student Account
  • Select Authorization to pay Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II Grant (HEERF II)

If you prefer to have the grant issued directly to you, please consider signing up for Direct Deposit if you have not already done so. Direct Deposit allows for quicker refunds. If you choose not to use Direct Deposit a paper check will be mailed to your home address. Please review your personal information in Self Service to ensure your home address is current.

To sign up for Direct Deposit (or change your current bank account):

  • Log into your account
  • Click on Personal Profile
  • Click on Direct Deposit

All HEERF II funds will appear on your student account beginning the week of April 5, 2021. Payments to students will be issued within ten days of the date it appeared on your account.

Below line, last updated Sept. 3, 2021

Student Relief Award Criteria

COVID-19 Emergency Funding

COVID-19 Emergency Funding is for students who are unable to meet immediate, essential expenses due to temporary hardship or unforeseen emergencies related to the COVID-19 virus. Decisions regarding the award and disbursement of funds are made on a case-by-case basis. Awards are not considered loans and do not require repayment. Awards will be provided until funds are exhausted.

Important: The COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund is considered estimated financial assistance (EFA) and must be coordinated with the financial aid office to ensure a student receiving such assistance is not over awarded with Title IV aid.

Applying for Emergency Funding

What is next?

A member of the COVID-19 Student Emergency Funding Team will be in contact with as soon as possible.

Who is eligible?

  • Students must have been enrolled during the fall 2020 term or will be enrolled at the University of Detroit Mercy winter 2021.
  • A student has not previously received financial assistance through this fund.
  • Due to a limited amount of funds available, the COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund team will need to evaluate individual requests and distribute funds based on critical and urgent needs. The COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund team is working to ensure relief funds are distributed to as many students as possible.

Emergency funding is reserved for students who have exhausted all other available options. Prior to granting funding from the COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund, the Dean of Students Office will work with the Office of Financial Aid to determine if any funds granted impact loans, scholarships, or grants the student is currently receiving.

Expenses Generally Covered

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Examples of Priority Needs Emergency housing expenses
  • Emergency temporary lodging (if you find yourself homeless or in an unsafe situation)
  • Essential utilities (e.g. electric, gas, water)
  • Temporary food insecurity
  • Emergency medical treatment/medication/prescriptions when you do not have the ability to pay and the costs cannot be covered by insurance
  • Financial needs arising from an unexpected emergency, accident, or other unexpected critical incidents
  • Other academic needs related to the switch to online learning (e.g. laptop, internet)
  • Travel costs related to death or illness of an immediate family member
  • Other financial needs arising from individual and special circumstances to be determined on a case by case basis

Expenses Generally Not Covered

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Tuition and student fees
  • Health insurance
  • Continuous fixed expenses (e.g. rent)
  • Study abroad costs
  • Non-essential utilities (cable)
  • Costs of entertainment, recreation, or non-emergency travel
  • Legal counsel and fees
  • Parking tickets
  • Expenses due to a lack of financial planning or overspending
  • Outstanding debt to the university or otherwise (i.e. credit cards, fees past due, etc.)
  • Other university fees

Distribution of Emergency Funding

The COVID-19 Emergency funds will be disbursed, via a check or Direct Deposit, within two weeks of the COVID-19 Student Emergency Fund team’s approval.

The University encourages all students to sign up for Direct Deposit to allow for faster receipt of funds.

Steps to sign up for Direct Deposit:

  • Log into your Titan Pass account
  • Select Self Service
  • Student
  • Student Account
  • Direct Deposit Student Refunds
  • Type in routing and account number
  • Check either savings or checking, and submit.

Update Home Address for Paper Checks: 

  • Log into your Titan Pass account
  • Select Self Service
  • Student
  • Personal Information
  • Update Addresses and Phone Numbers

If you were working, you may be eligible for unemployment compensation. Please check with your state for this information.

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    Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Reporting

    On May 6, 2020, the Office of Postsecondary Education published requirements for Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) reporting. Reporting for HEERF funds distributed to the University of Detroit Mercy will begin 30 days from the signed Department of Certification and agreement and each 45 days thereafter. Find reporting details here.