American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)

On March 11, 2021 the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law by the President of the United States. The ARPA, among other relief measures, provided for emergency relief for students and institutions of higher education. Funding, as outlined in Section 2003 (a)(1), was allocated to each institution of higher education based on a formula as defined by the ARPA. 

Under this formula, Rensselaer was allocated a total of $13,642,165. A minimum of $6,821,083 is required to be allocated to direct student aid; the remaining funds are available to assist with offsetting institutional costs incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Direct Student Aid

Rensselaer was awarded $6,821,083 by the Department of Education for direct student aid grants. As of November 30, 2021 the Institute established its policies with regard to distribution of grants. All available funds will be distributed to eligible undergraduate students based on Expected Family Contribution as a result of their FASFA, as required by the terms and conditions of the award, prioritizing awards to the highest need students at Rensselaer.

The Institute is utilizing a tiered approach for the distribution of the awards, providing larger awards to our neediest students. To be eligible for an award, a student must meet the following criteria:

  • The student was enrolled as matriculating undergraduate student for Fall 2021 semester as of November 30, 2021.
  • The student filed a FASFA with the Institute for the 2021-22 academic year.
  • The student’s Expected Family Contribution for the 2021-22 academic year was $25,000 or less.

The Emergency Financial Aid Grant amount is determined based on Expected Family Contribution as outlined in the following table:

Expected Family Contribution American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) 2021 Grant
$0 - $7,500 $4,000
$7,501 - $12,500 $3,000
$12,501 - $25,000 $2,000
Greater than $25,000 $0

Direct student aid grants distribution expected to begin December 14, 2021.

Letter to Student (PDF)

Institution Aid

On May 20, 2021, Rensselaer was awarded $6,821,082 by the Department of Education for reimbursement of institutional costs, including lost revenues, associated with the COVID-19 pandemic as awarded in the ARPA.  All funds are expected to be expended by December 31, 2021.


The ARPA requires institutions to submit ongoing reports. View the reports below.


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