FAMU softball team at the President’s call earlier this month. Photo courtesy of famu.edu

Some Florida A&M students are calling the recent news that $ 41.5 million in tuition and fee assistance is provided in the 2021-2022 school year “the gift that keeps on giving.”

Announced by President Larry Robinson at the President’s summons earlier this month, the extra aid will be used to clear student balances on debt relief and tuition fees. As noted in a press release, thanks to the federal Cares Act, aid will bring the amount of aid the university will provide to its students to $ 57 million.

Several students took to social media, especially Twitter, to share the news with their peers after seeing some, if not all, of their financial obligations cleared from their iRattler accounts.

“Some call it Twitter fingers, but I was just too happy not to tweet about it after seeing my debt cleared and I wouldn’t have to sit for a semester,” said Ryanne Cary, student. in the fourth year in computer science. “I’m an out-of-state student so you know it’s pretty expensive to attend [FAMU]. Knowing that I had outstanding charges was a burden, but now that the school has cleared it, I feel so relieved. “

This summer, FAMU used more than $ 16 million in Cares Act funds to settle unpaid fees on student accounts. This has been a blessing to the masses of students and their families and has enabled many students to enroll in the next semester without any hassle. Currently, for the 2021-2022 academic year, full-time students will receive a total of $ 5,000, $ 2,500 per semester. FAMU officials said about $ 15.3 million has already been disbursed this fall semester.

“Students and their parents should have already seen the impact on their financial accounts,” William Hudson Jr., vice president of student affairs, said in a statement. “This is a very big deal for our students and their families. This decreases the potential debt of our students.

About 60 percent of students who attend FAMU are eligible for the Pell Scholarship, which means most FAMU students have exceptional financial need. This average is the highest in the Florida state university system. Hudson mentioned during the call that a third of FAMU students are first generation students. And the typical college student has a family income of less than $ 50,000 a year.

“Sometimes I have a hard time paying for my classes and even my textbooks,” said Adrienne Lane, a fourth-year general science student. “Even more after COVID it got a little harder to make ends meet, but that’s why I’m so grateful because I had huge charges on my account. Then I checked recently and it was gone.

Robinson said he wanted people to know that FAMU cares about its students and their needs, and he said he was looking for other ways the school could help students overcome their difficulties. financial. Robinson told a group of enthusiastic students that the school is ready to do whatever it takes to make sure things turn out for the best.

“You need our help, and we’re going to do everything we can to make that happen,” Robinson said during the call. “Some of you and your parents, when these bills started to go away, you started calling my office. “FAMU, that $ 3,000 bill is missing, was it wrong?” It wasn’t a mistake. It was by design.