American Rescue Plan Act

Emergency Financial Assistance Has Ended

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Gaston College received funding from the U.S. Department of Education to support eligible students with costs of attendance or emergency costs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Gaston College helped more than 100 eligible students with emergency costs related to COVID-19 through the ARP Student Emergency Grant.

Due to funding limitations, the College will no longer be accepting applications for ARP assistance effective at noon on Friday, February 11, 2022.

Still need help? Visit the Community Resource Finder to locate community resources in your area, or call the Student Success and Retention Department at 704.922.6220 if you have questions regarding College and community resources.



American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 is a financial assistance grant available to students in emergency situations due to the results of unmet needs related to the coronavirus that occurred on or after March 13, 2020, the date of the declaration of a National Emergency concerning the Novel Coronavirus Disease Outbreak (COVID-19).  This plan is federally funded.

To Qualify for ARP You Must:

Be a Gaston College student who has faced unexpected expenses from loss/change of employment (either for themselves or their families) due to COVID-19.

ARP Funds Can Be Used For:

  • Tuition
  • Technology
  • Housing
  • Health care (including mental health care)
  • Course Materials
  • Food
  • Utilities
  • Child Care Pursuant to the College’s Child Care Grant Guidelines

ARP cannot be used for any insecurity that was incurred before March 13, 2020 and/or was not a result of COVID-19.


ARP and Financial Aid Information

  • The amount of the ARP award for each student will be determined by emergency need and awarded first to students with exceptional emergency needs.
  • ARP is not affiliated with financial aid sources, including Pell, WIOA, TAA, scholarships, and grants.
  • While the College encourages students to keep the highest GPA that they are capable, these emergency funds are in no way related to a student’s GPA or SAP status.
  • Funds received from ARP will not be considered in the student’s gross income.

ARP Checklist:

  • Complete the ARP Emergency Grant Application. 
  • Itemize cost of requested assistance
    • Tuition Assistance: Tuition bill or account balance document
    • Book Assistance: Course syllabus listing course requirements and costs list from the Gaston College Bookstore
    • Course Materials Assistance: Course syllabus listing requirements and costs for supplies, immunizations, fingerprints, etc.
    • Technology Assistance: Course syllabus listing hardware, software, or access needs along with documentation outlining the costs
    • Food Assistance: Written statement outlining the need
    • Housing Assistance: Rent/mortgage showing the amount in arrears
    • Utilities Assistance: Utility bill(s) showing the amount in arrears
    • Health Care Assistance: Invoice showing the unmet need
    • Child Care Assistance: Bill outlining the costs in arrears
  • Attach any documentation that supports your need for emergency assistance

You must provide all requested documentation before your application will be reviewed. After submitting your application, you can expect to hear from an ARP staff member within 10 business days regarding the status of your application.


Due to funding limitations, the College will no longer be accepting applications for ARP assistance effective at noon on Friday, February 11, 2022.


Grant funds have been provided by the U.S. Department of Education Award Number P425E200519100. 100 percent of the cost of this program is financed with federal funds. Gaston College has received $7,121,354 in federal funds to support this program and other COVID-19 related needs. Zero percent of non-federal dollars have been used to finance this program.

Visit the HEERF/CARES Act Reporting page for more information on the College’s distribution of HEERF financial aid grants to students.