FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                      4/24/2020

                                                                                    (By Lisa Garrett)

PENDLETON --- The first round of federal funding for the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, has been released and Tri-County Technical College received a total of $4.2 million, with $2,123,242 dispersed immediately to eligible students.

The CARES Act is federal legislation to provide funding to higher education to lessen the economic hardships that COVID-19 has placed on individuals and families.

Colleges and universities are required to use CARES Act funds to provide grants to students for expenses related to disruptions to their education due to COVID-19, including things like course materials and technology, as well as food, housing, health care and childcare.

Colleges and universities must use at least 50 percent of funding for direct student aid and up to 50 percent for college operations.

“Our framework was based on two guiding principles: equity and flexibility,” said Tri-County President Galen DeHay.  “Our awards aren’t based on credit hours but on students who need it most.  We’re also being flexible in providing those who have the responsibility to deliver those funds to make professional judgments to increase funding based on student need.  I am very proud of that.”

To be eligible for CARES Act grants, students must meet the following criteria:

  • Students must have been enrolled at Tri-County Technical College on March 13, 2020 (the day the president declared a national emergency as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, which was also the last day of class prior to the transition to online learning)
  • Students must also be Federal Title IV eligible by meeting the following requirements:
    1. Completed a 2019-2020 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) with all requirements completed and demonstrated financial need
    2. Have a high school credential
    3. Meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements: GPA of 2.0 or higher; maintain a 67% or higher completion rate; complete your degree/diploma/certificate within 150% of the required program hours of study
    4. Be enrolled in an eligible program of study

DACA, dual enrollment, transient, non-degree and I-BEST students are not eligible for CARES Act grants.

Individuals who are Federal Pell Grant recipients will receive a one-time CARES Act grant of $1,000.  Those who are eligible based on the above criteria but are not a Federal Pell Grant recipient, will receive a one-time CARES Act grant of $625.

 In addition to CARES Act funding, Tri-County is making additional funds available to students through its newly established Workforce Completion Fund. The purpose of the fund is to provide financial support to students whose academic pursuits were affected by the transition from in-person to online learning, unemployment or other life situations as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tri-County Technical College Foundation made a $10,000 gift to the fund and the College has pledged up to $100,000 in matching dollars.

“At Tri-County, we are committed to our vision of changing lives, one student at a time,” said Grayson Kelly, vice president of institutional advancement and business relations. “The Workforce Completion Fund has been established by donors who understand that community college students are different and have different needs. Many of our students are non-traditional, working full-time jobs and raising families. It is important that we meet our students where they are and offer them the support they need to stay on track academically so that they can continue to meet the goals they set prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Workforce Completion Fund aims to do just that.  It will provide resources to students whose educational journey and life have been altered due to this pandemic.”

To make a donation to the Workforce Completion Fund, visit Be sure to type “Workforce Completion Fund” in the notes section.  Donors also can call (864) 646-1812.