COVID-19 Response

COVID-19 Policies for Fall 2022

In managing the COVID-19 outbreak and safety mitigation, Park University draws upon guidance from North Kansas City Hospital, Platte County Health Department, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Park encourages individuals to be vaccinated and to receive any recommended boosters. In an effort to communicate current policies to all community members for Fall 2022, the below guidelines are being shared. These policies remain in effect unless leadership revises them due to local, state, or federal mandates.

Masks will not be required; however, masks will be emphasized as the best way to manage community transmission. As long as one individual is wearing a properly fitted mask, the probability of transmission to other individuals is lessened.

The University will not distribute masks at building entrances. Individuals who wish to wear masks on campus should plan to bring their own. The University will have a very limited number of disposable masks available at the Office of Campus Safety.

 

Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 are required to isolate for five days from the onset of symptoms or the date of a positive test, whichever comes first. Students who are symptomatic and have been exposed should quarantine until they receive a negative test. After five days of isolation, individuals who test positive can return to activity but should wear a mask until day 10. Although the University will not be conducting formal contact tracing, employees who test positive should report to hr-covid@park.edu. Students testing positive should report through the COVID-19 Reporting Form.

 

Any residential student who is concerned about symptoms and/or exposure will be encouraged to test for COVID-19. Residential students testing positive will be instructed to isolate for five days and then wear a mask for five additional days. Due to limited isolation spaces available, students testing positive should plan to go home for their isolation period. If that is not possible, students isolating might have to stay in their current space and wear a mask at all times. Roommates will be encouraged to wear a mask, as well. Exposed students will not need to isolate unless they become symptomatic. Students too ill to leave their space should contact Residence Life or Student Life to explore options for meal delivery.

 

 

Student athletes will be encouraged to test if there are symptoms or exposure. A student athlete testing positive will not participate in team activities for five days. After five days, students in outdoor sports may return to activity. Students in indoor sports can play after five days, but must continue to wear a mask until day 10.

 

Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF)

The U.S. Department of Education has provided money to college and universities for institutional support as well as student support through three federal awards known as Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF):

Student Reporting – HEERF I

Information Regarding Emergency Grants to Students

We are pleased to advise that under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”), Park University has now received and has distributed the allocation for emergency assistance to eligible students who have been impacted by unexpected expenses due to disruption of campus operations by the coronavirus pandemic. Such expenses include items under a student’s cost of attendance such as food, housing, course materials, technology, healthcare and childcare. In guidance that it issued on May 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Education directed any university which received its allocation of emergency funds for students to provide particular information in a manner that is easily accessible to the public. That information is as follows:

  1. An acknowledgement that the institution signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement and the assurance that the institution has used, or intends to use, no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Park University signed and submitted to the U.S. Department of Education the Certification and Agreement on April 15, 2020 and assures that Park has used no less than 50% of the funds it received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

  1. The total amount of funds that the institution will receive or has received from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.

Park University’s allocation of funds for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students was $1,402,922, received on April 30, 2020.

  1. The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of submission (i.e., as of the 30-day Report and every 45 days thereafter).

$1,402,922.

  1. The estimated total number of students at the institution eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

As of May 11, 2020, 2,106 students had demonstrated their eligibility by providing a valid FAFSA form. Students who have not yet provided a valid FAFSA for the 2019-2020 academic year, or other evidence of qualification for funds under Title IV, received notices of the urgency to provide a valid FAFSA or other proof of qualification under Title IV funding, or else they would miss the opportunity to receive any of the emergency funding.

  1. The total number of students who have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

Checks and ACH payments have been executed to 2,116 students.

  1. The method(s) used by the institution to determine which students receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

The method for determining which students have received the grants was as follows:

  1. a) Park University compiled a list of students who participated in classes with face-to-face instruction (i.e., not those students who were 100% enrolled in online courses) and analyzed which of those students had submitted a FAFSA or other documentation demonstrating eligibility to receive Title IV funds.
  2. b) Park University sent communications, by email and text, to each student enrolled in face-to-face classes who had not filed a FAFSA and did not have other evidence on file of eligibility for Title IV funds, asking that student to submit a valid FAFSA form or other proof of eligibility immediately. Any student who failed to file the FAFSA form or other proof of Title IV funding eligibility by Park’s deadline would forfeit his or her opportunity to receive an emergency funds grant, and those funds would instead be allocated to other eligible students.

As of May 15, 2020, 2,919 students were identified as potentially eligible to receive CARES Act emergency funds. Of those, 813 had not completed a FAFSA form by May 8, 2020, or provided other proof of eligibility to receive federal funds under Title IV. Park withheld those funds (“the segregated funds”) that would have been paid to these 813 students and gave them an extended time frame, until June 12, 2020, within which to file a FAFSA form or other proof of eligibility under Title IV, or forfeit their opportunity to receive emergency funds.

  1. c) Funds have been distributed to students via direct deposit, where available, or by check. To the extent that checks are returned to Park undeposited or expired, Park University will assess how to allocate the funds represented by those unclaimed checks. With regard to how much each student received, each eligible student received $57.74 for each credit hour taken in a class with face-to-face instruction. In addition, each eligible student who was in university housing received an additional $200. On top of that, each student who received a Pell Grant received an additional $200.
  2. d) Park University extended the deadline to June 12, 2020, for those students who had not completed a FAFSA or submitted other evidence of eligibility for Title IV funds, referenced in b) above. Park received an additional 11 FAFSA forms by the extended deadline of June 12, 2020, and those 11 students received their allocations as described in c) above. The remaining students who failed to submit a FAFSA form or other proof of eligibility for Title IV funding were considered ineligible, and the segregated funds that would have been allocated to them were instead allocated to the eligible students, using the same allocation formula described in c) above. After the segregated funds were distributed to the 2,116 eligible students, in addition to the initial funds that were distributed to them, each of those eligible students had been sent an average of $72.22 per eligible credit hour across both disbursements.
  3. Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants.

Park University has provided the following communications to students concerning the emergency financial grants:

  1. a) Letter to Student Recipients of Emergency Funds;
  2. b) Letter to Students Without FAFSA Forms Requesting that they Provide FAFSA;
  3. c) Follow-up message regarding deadline for filing FAFSA or other Title IV proof;
  4. d) The following text went out 4/30 at 1 pm:

The DOE has identified a CARES Act allotment for ParkU Check your email for details park.edu/apply-financial-aid/ Questions? finaid@park.edu;

  1. e) The following text went out on 5/6 at 11 am:

FAFSA DUE DATE 5/8 to be considered 4 the CARES Act. You could qualify. Do ur FAFSA today! Questions? Contact finaid@park.edu 816-584-6290 Attached is the initial email that was sent to the students without FAFSA April 30, 2020. A text message was sent to this same group reminding them to check their Park e-mail on April 30, 2020 and May 6, 2020; and

  1. f) A general update regarding CARES Act was posted to our COVID web page on 4/29/20: park.edu/coronavirus.

Any student with questions regarding the emergency funds should contact Student Financial Aid at finaid@park.edu or at 816-584-6290. Anyone interested in additional information on the CARES Act provided by the U.S. Department of Education should refer to https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ope/caresact.html.

Student Reporting – HEERF II

Federal Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) II – Emergency Grants for Students

The Federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA), 2021, has allocated emergency financial aid grants called the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) II to assist students with exceptional need. These grants can be used toward educational costs and other emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care), or child care.

Student amount of funds received and support

Park University has been allocated $1,402,922 under the CRRSAA for direct student support in a way that prioritizes eligible students with exceptional need and ensures that funds are distributed as widely and expeditiously as possible, per federal guidance. Based on the method to determine student eligibility below, Park University has identified 2,919 students and will distribute an average award of approximately $480 to each student.

Student eligibility criteria:

  • Be a U.S Citizen or Permanent Resident that is eligible to complete a FAFSA
  • Have a valid FAFSA on file as of 1/17/2021
  • Demonstrate exceptional need by having a valid EFC between 0-6000
  • Students selected for verification must have completed verification to have a valid EFC
  • Be an undergraduate or graduate student enrolled in at least one course as of March 7, 2021.

FAQs

  • Do I need to repay this Grant?
    • No. An emergency grant, whether funded by HEERF II or the University’s Student Hardship Fund, does not need to be repaid. This grant does not impact or replace any financial aid you may currently receive, and it is a one-time grant.
  • What if I currently owe tuition or other expenses to Park University?
    • The full amount of the emergency grants will be given directly to students and will not pay outstanding balances owed to Park University. Any outstanding balance remains the responsibility of the student.
  • How much will I receive?
    • Based on the eligible students that have been identified above, the approximate award will be $480.
  • How will I receive the grant money?
    • If you had direct deposit information on file by April 11th, 2021, you will receive an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). If not, a paper check will be mailed to the address on file.
  • When will I receive the grant money?
    • Park University will begin disbursing funds on April 16, 2021. If you are receiving a paper check, please allow 10-14 days.

Questions?

If you have questions, please contact Student Financial Aid by email at finaid@park.edu or call 1-816-584-6290.

Student Reporting – HEERF III

Park University has received $7,194,157 from the American Rescue Plan, Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF III), to provide direct support to our students in the form of emergency financial aid grants. Consistent with the federal legislation, we will prioritize these federal grants for students with exceptional need.

In accordance with the Department of Education guidelines, Park U will distribute the emergency student grants in the following ways:

Who is Eligible to receive an emergency grant through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021?

  • Must be currently enrolled undergraduate or graduate student as of August 16, 2021
  • Must have filed a 2021-2022 FAFSA and have an EFC of 15,000 or less
  • Students in this group do not need to request or apply for these funds

What if I do not have a FAFSA on File?

  • Coming soon there will be an application available for non-FAFSA filers.
  • Students who have encountered unexpected educational-related expenses due to COVID-19, are invited to apply for a limited number of HEERF III grants.
  • Students who are not eligible to complete a FAFSA or do not want to complete a FAFSA will be eligible to apply. This includes international students.

Will the money be applied to my outstanding balance with Park University?

  • No, per the U.S. Department of Education guidelines, Park University cannot automatically apply the funds to an outstanding balance. If you would like to make a payment to your student bill once you receive the funds please log into your MyPark account to make a payment.

How will I receive my grant?

  • You should have already received an email requesting that you provide us with your direct deposit and updated address information. If you did not receive that email and want to verify the information on hand please contact student accounts.
  • If you do not have direct deposit set up, you will receive a paper check sent to the address on file with the Registrar.

Fund from the HEERF III are not considered Financial Aid and do not affect a student’s current or future financial aid eligibility.

Professional Judgement

Financial Difficulties: If your family is experiencing financial issues (such as a lost job, reduction of income, or other extenuating circumstances) and would like to obtain information about the process of filing a Professional Judgement Appeal for the 2021-2022 academic year, please contact us at finaid@park.edu or 816-584-6290.

Who Should Apply

Families facing severe financial problems due to job loss, medical expenses, foreclosure, or business declines should contact the Office of Financial Aid for a review of their aid eligibility. If you have experienced a significant and prolonged loss of family income, you may be eligible for additional aid for the current academic year. We can work with your family to find the best mix of resources to keep you enrolled. The application will be provided to you by the financial aid office along with additional instructions on what documentation will be acceptable based on your appeal reason(s).

Circumstances that will be considered include:

  • Loss of income because of recent unemployment (unemployment must last for at least 10 weeks to warrant a reconsideration of a student’s aid eligibility).
  • Loss of income due to a circumstance beyond your control such as a change in health
  • High unreimbursed medical and/or dental expenses.
  • Business loss (because of bankruptcy, foreclosure, or natural disaster).
  • High Cost of Attendance because of higher-than-usual book or supply expenses or child care costs (this can only be adjusted if the student is (1) single and provides at least 51% of the child’s support; (2) married, with a spouse/partner who is employed at least 20 hours per week; or (3) married, with a spouse/partner who is also a student).

Use of Professional Judgement

Evaluation of financial aid applications, re-evaluation of an aid package, or an appeal of a financial aid decision, are handled through a review process using professional judgement by financial aid professionals in the Park University Office of Financial Aid. Any request submitted will be considered using best professional practices and making such a request does not guarantee approval. Financial aid regulations are subject to change through legislation or policy changes by the U.S. Department of Education.

Processing Time of Professional Judgements

All requests will take a minimum of two weeks to process. Submitting all documentation with the application will save processing time. Failure to submit supporting documentation can greatly increase processing time and in some cases be the cause for denial. The Office of Financial Aid cannot, under any circumstances, process a request received after the end of the enrollment period.

HEERF III Grants Awarded through December 31, 2021

$4,000,600 in grants were made to 3,385 students

$20,250 were made to 27 students via the application process

HEERF III Grants Awarded through March 31, 2022

$4,461,850 in grants were made to 3,611 students

$481,500 were made to 642 students via the application process

Park University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Park University is a private, non-profit, institution of higher learning since 1875.