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Secretary DeVos Rapidly Delivers More Than $6 Billion in Emergency Cash Grants for College Students Impacted by Coronavirus Outbreak

First wave of CARES Act funding will provide aid to students for expenses like course materials, technology, housing, food, health care, and childcare

WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced today more than $6 billion will be distributed immediately to colleges and universities to provide direct emergency cash grants to college students whose lives and educations have been disrupted by the coronavirus outbreak. The funding is available through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, signed into law by President Donald J. Trump less than two weeks ago.

“What’s best for students is at the center of every decision we make,” said Secretary DeVos. “That’s why we prioritized getting funding out the door quickly to college students who need it most. We don’t want unmet financial needs due to the coronavirus to derail their learning.”

The CARES Act provides nearly $14 billion to support postsecondary education students and institutions. Colleges and universities are required to utilize the $6.28 billion made available today to provide cash grants to students for expenses related to disruptions to their educations due to the COVID-19 outbreak, including things like course materials and technology as well as food, housing, health care, and childcare. In order to access the funds, the Department must receive a signed certification from the higher education institution affirming they will distribute the funds in accordance with applicable law. The college or university will then determine which students will receive the cash grants.

School allocations are set by formula prescribed in the CARES Act that is weighted significantly by the number of full-time students who are Pell-eligible but also takes into consideration the total population of the school and the number of students who were not enrolled full-time online before the coronavirus outbreak. The Department is utilizing the most recent data available from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and Federal Student Aid (FSA) for this calculation.

Institutions will receive allocations and guidance for the institutional share of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund in the coming weeks. Institutions will be able to use these funds to cover costs associated with significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus.

Additional information on institution-level funding for students, including data tables, can be found here. The Secretary’s letter to college and university presidents with additional information on this funding allocation can be found here.

The funding allocations announced today are part of the nearly $31 billion Congress allocated to the Department to distribute to students, K-12 schools, and higher education institutions under the CARES Act. The Department, at the Secretary’s urging, is working to make funds available as quickly as possible.

Under the Secretary’s leadership, the Department has taken quick action to support higher education students from the start of the coronavirus outbreak. Colleges and universities were given immediate regulatory flexibility so students’ educations could continue online. The Secretary also provided student loan relief to tens of millions of borrowers by setting all federally held student loan interest rates to zero percent and allowing borrowers to defer payments for 60 days without interest. The CARES Act extends those benefits to six months. The Department also stopped all federal wage garnishments and collections actions for borrowers with federally held loans in default.

The Department continues to update ed.gov/coronavirus with information for students, parents, educators and local leaders about how to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

For more information about COVID-19, please visit the following websites: coronavirus.gov, cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html, and usa.gov/coronavirus.

 

 

 Dear Reid State Students:

I am reaching out to you as someone who cares deeply about your personal safety, health, and well-being. We are facing a public health crisis worldwide, and here in Alabama.

In accordance with Governor Kay Ivey’s directive and guidance by the Alabama Community College System, Reid State Technical College is discontinuing on-campus instruction as well as non-essential on-campus services, and transitioning to remote delivery of services through the end of the semester, to protect the health, safety and well-being of our students, employees and the communities we serve. College faculty and staff will remain accessible to students throughout this crisis. 

Students should please make note of the following information:

Student Services: Through the myrstc portal, students may register for classes, view their schedule, access personal and financial aid information, and make payments.

The Student Services Department will be working remotely and may be reached as follows: 

• Dean of Students – tpurifoy@rstc.edu

• Admissions – nray@rstc.edu

• Financial Aid – cbulger@rstc.edu

• Registrar – vickien@rstc.edu

• Cashier – rowens@rstc.edu

• Counseling Services/ADA – tpurifoy@rstc.edu

• IT Director – pparker@rstc.edu

• Security/Decal Information – briley@rstc.edu

Thanks to each of you for your cooperation, help and understanding. We know for many of our students, this is causing an unexpected disruption and yet it is one step you can take to help keep yourself and your family safe. No matter where you reside, our staff is available to help; please don’t hesitate to contact us.

In my 27 years of working in post-secondary education, I have faced many crises, yet none like this. This global pandemic is unlike anything previously seen by any of us. We know that the Reid State Technical College family come together to achieve great things, and it is vital we unite during this crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing each of us to make sacrifices and changes.

Finally, please continue to check our RSTC website, which is being constantly updated with new information. 

Sincerely,

Tangela Purifoy, Ed.D. Dean of Students

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)  

Is the Admissions office open?  The Admissions Office is operating remotely to help reduce the risk of Coronavirus.  Although you will not be able to visit us you can still remain in contact with us by emailing us.  
 
How can I speak with someone in the Admissions Office?  At the current time communication will be maintained via email.  For a more efficient response time please email nray@rstc.edu .
 
How can I turn in my required admissions documents to RSTC? The preferred methods of submitting Admissions documents are to send them to mailing address P.O. Box 588, Evergreen, AL 36401, Fax (251) 578-4824 or scan to email to nray@rstc.edu.
 
How can I submit my transcript to RSTC from my previous college? To submit previous college transcripts please contact that college to request transcripts to be sent to RSTC Admissions Department mailing address P.O. Box 588, Evergreen, AL 36401 or electronic submission by ESCRIP.

How can I get a RSTC transcript? A student must submit a written request to have an official transcript sent to another institution or agency. To request a transcript please download the Transcript Release Form found under the Admissions Tab, Request a Transcript option. Official transcripts will not be issued to the individual student.  However, the student may submit a written request for an unofficial transcript which does not bear the college seal. Use the Transcript Release Form to complete this request. A transcript request should be made at least two weeks before a transcript is needed. All transcripts are issued by the College free of charge. Requests for official transcripts from other institutions must be directed to the institution concerned. The Office of Admissions will not issue copies of transcripts from other colleges or copies of high school transcripts to students. 

I need to drop my class(es) due to Coronavirus, who can I speak with? If a student need to withdraw or drop a class, please contact your instructor who will contact the Registrar. The Registrar will complete your withdrawal form. Your form will be sent to the Financial Aid office for calculation purposes and the Dean of Students will be notified of all drop and withdrawal forms.
 
Can I get admission application assistance over the phone? Admissions Application assistance is  available via email to nray@rstc.edu
 

Who do we contact concerning registration for Summer 2020? Please contact your advisor for registration. Your advisor will register you for your classes for Summer semester. Summer 2020 Registration will begin on April 3. Registration and Advising for Summer will still be conducted online. 
 
Is the Financial Aid Office open?  The Financial Aid Office remains open for student questions and FAFSA processing. The Financial Aid Office will work remotely but will remain available to assist students. All questions need to be addressed to Ms. Goodwin by email: cbulger@rstc.edu.  

How can I speak with someone in the Financial Aid Office?  Please contact the Financial Aid Office by email at cbulger@rstc.edu 
 
How can I turn in requested financial aid verification forms?  Please mail all forms to the college address: RSTC, Attn: Financial Aid, P O Box 588, Evergreen, AL 36401 
 
Where can I get the requested financial aid verification forms?  Verification forms will be mailed to the student once their FAFSA has been received. If a student needs additional forms, those can be requested by emailing Ms. Goodwin. 
 
I need to drop classes due to Coronavirus, how will this affect my financial aid status?  Once a class or classes are dropped, the withdrawal form will be processed by the Registrar and then given to the Financial Aid Office for processing. 
 
I am a work-study student and have a job on campus, Will I continue to be paid if I’m not at work?  Currently employed work study students will continue to be paid for the weekly 15 hours during the coronavirus epidemic. 
 
How will this affect the scholarship deadline for Fall 2020?  Scholarship deadline will be extended until June 1, 2020. 
 
What information do I need to complete my FAFSA for Fall 2020?  The FAFSA for Fall 2020 requires you to use 2018 Tax information. You are required to file the 2020-2021 FAFSA


Who do we contact concerning registration for Summer 2020? Please contact your advisor for registration. Your advisor will register you for your classes for Summer semester.

 
What is the process for Orientation for Summer 2020?  Once you have completed the registration process with your advisor, and cleared your charges with the cashier, an orientation power point presentation will be mailed to you. Please review the Student Handbook on our website at www.rstc.edu. A schedule will be provided for you to have
your Photo ID (Tech Card) made, and to pick up your parking decal upon your return to campus. You may also pick up a hard copy of the Student Handbook, and safety manual at that time.  

How can I pay for my classes for the next semester? Classes can be paid online by logging into your student account through MyRSTC.
 
Can I pay by phone? Students are not able to pay by phone but can easily clear charges through their MyRSTC portal.
 
How can I make a payment for my course(s) online? Please review the directions on the website.
 
How can I speak with someone? If you have questions about clearing your charges, please contact Ms.Ruth Owens at rowens@rstc.edu.  If you have questions about your financial aid, please contact Ms.Christy Goodwin at cbulger@rstc.edu.


Is the ADA/504 Office open?  The ADA/504 office is not available in person, but ADA services are still available to help meet the needs of our students. To schedule a phone appointment contact Dr. Purifoy, Dean of Students at tpurifoy@rstc.edu.

 
How can I speak with someone in ADA Office?  Students can email Dr. Tangela Purifoy, Dean of Students at  tpurifoy@rstc.edu for assistance. 

I receive accommodations and support through the ADA Office and How do I adapt my accommodations to online learning?  This will be determined via case-by-case review. Students should wait to hear from their instructors before emailing in regards to their course format. Students can email their questions or concerns to Dr. Tangela Purifoy at tpurifoy@rstc.edu 

 

 

 

REID STATE TECHNICAL COLLEGE TO CONDUCT CLASSES AND OPERATIONS REMOTELY AS A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE AGAINST COVID-19

Evergreen, AL (March16, 2020) – Reid State Technical College will temporarily cease on-campus classes and events beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020. This decision is made as a precautionary measure, as the college puts the safety of its students first and adheres, to the Alabama Community College System’s (ACCS) decision to temporarily discontinue on-campus instruction across the state. Instructors will adhere to alternative instruction methods and are working with students to ensure best practices.

“We have a duty to keep our students safe and do as much as possible to minimize the risk of this virus,” said Interim President Jeff Rhodes. “Instructors for each of the college’s 11 programs have developed contingency plans that best fit the college’s technical programs fully considering circumstances that might make this a challenge for our students,” said Dean of Instruction /Workforce Development Dr. Coretta Boykin. Reid State’s programs of instruction are the following: Industrial Electricity & Electronics (ILT), Industrial Maintenance (INT), Business Administration Technology (BUS), Phlebotomy (HPS), Nursing Assistant (NAS), Practical Nursing (PN), Commercial Truck Driving (TRK), Cosmetology (COS), Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), and Adult Education (AE). Students are being advised to check their student email as well as online learning platforms for course updates and instructions on how to proceed remotely.

The college is working diligently to keep students, staff and faculty safe. Literature about proper hand washing and COVID-19 symptoms is posted on the college website, social media and throughout the campus. The campus will observe spring break beginning March 23rd - March 27, 2020. No remote course instruction is expected.  

For additional information, please visit www.rstc.edu. or contact Dean of Instruction/Workforce Development Dr. Coretta Boykin at 251-578-1313. 

 

Reid State to Discontinue On-Site Instruction as a precautionary measure of COVID-19

Attention All Reid State Students:

As a precautionary measure, Reid State Technical College will discontinue on-site instruction beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020 through April, 3, 2020 amid the threat of COVID-19. 

Courses will be offered through alternative instructional methods, such as online or other teaching formats.  Please continue to check your student email and Canvas account for course updates and instruction on how to proceed with remote classes from your instructors.

 

Guidance for Novel Coronavirus, COVID-19

 Issued by the Alabama Department of Public Health for All State Post-Secondary Schools and the State Department of Education

The 2019 novel coronavirus is a virus that causes a potentially severe respiratory disease, COVID-19. It was recently identified in China and is now being detected worldwide. The situation regarding COVID-19 continues to evolve rapidly. The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) considers an individual being anywhere in China, or a country with active community transmission within the previous 14 days, a risk factor for COVID-19. ADPH is communicating with travelers returning from China to provide guidance about limiting public interactions for 14 days, which is consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) current guidance for returning travelers. However, this is an evolving situation and more geographic areas may be added soon.

Students and staff returning from China or areas with active community transmission:

Students and staff returning from China or areas with active community transmission (www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers) may have been exposed to COVID-19 and must self-monitor symptoms for 14 days after leaving the affected area. Students and staff must contact ADPH Infectious Diseases & Outbreaks Division at 1-800-338-8374 immediately upon return to Alabama. These students and staff must be excluded from school for the duration of this monitoring period. They are asked to remain home and to avoid congregate group settings such as church, concerts, buses, etc. 

After the 14-day self-monitoring period, ADPH provides notice to the individual indicating completion of the required monitoring period, upon request.

Students or staff members who return from an affected area who develop symptoms compatible with C OVID-19 such as fever, cough, or difficulty breathing within their 14-day monitoring period, should take the following steps:

1.   Separate themselves from others as much as possible. Immediately notify ADPH Infectious Diseases & Outbreaks Division at 1-800-338-8374.

2.   If they experience an urgent health situation, seek medical care right away. Before going to a doctor's office or emergency room, call ahead and tell staff about recent travel and symptoms.

3.   Restrict travel to private vehicle or medical transport (e.g., ambulance). No public transportation while sick.

Persons who become symptomatic will require written physician clearance to return to school. Additional guidance from CDC on returning travelers is available at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/php/risk-assessment.html.

Students and staff without a history of travel or contact to a person with known COVID-19:

It is important that students and staff without a history of travel or contact to a person with known COVID-19 take every day preventative actions:

a.   Stay home when sick.

1.   Students and staff who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are asked to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° CJ or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants).

2.   Seek immediate medical care if symptoms become severe, such as high fever or difficulty breathing.

b.   Encourage students and staff to use "respiratory etiquette" through education and provision of supplies.

1.   Cover cough with a tissue or sleeve. See CDC's Cover Your Cough page. (www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/actions-prevent-flu.htm).

2.   Provide adequate supplies within easy reach, including tissues and no-touch trash cans.

3.   Routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects.

4.   Separate sick students and staff from others until they can go home.

5.   Encourage flu vaccine for those who have not had it this season to reduce illnesses and absences on campus (however, this will not prevent coronavirus illnesses).

6.   Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol­ based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.

7.   Avoid touching face with unwashed hands.

8.   Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

For additional information, please contact ADPH at (334) 206-5971 or visit the ADPH website at http://alabamapublichealth.gov/infectiousdiseases/2019-coronavirus.html.

 

Resources:
www.accs.edu/coronavirus
www.coronavirus.gov
www.cdc.gov/coronavirus
www.alabamapublichealth.gov
www.who.org
Mental Health Coping During Covid-19

Safe Return Flyer - Students 

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It is the policy of Reid State Technical College not to discriminate against any person on the grounds of race, color, disability, gender, religion, creed, national origin, or age, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program, activity, or employment.

Reid State Technical College is committed to providing a website that is accessible to the widest possible audience and in compliance with Section 508 guidelines. If you have accessibility concerns or any issues viewing our content, please call 251-578-1313.