Wallace State clears past balances for students from previous semesters to ease pandemic burden

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HANCEVILLE, Ala. — Wallace State Community College has cleared the balances of 644 students with outstanding accounts from previous semesters, forgiving more than $585,800 in student debt.   

Earlier this semester, eligible students were notified that their balances had been cleared, as well as any balance-related holds removed from their accounts, paving the way for them to continue their education if they so desire. 

“The college is committed to easing the financial burden so many of our current and former students have faced during the pandemic and to removing barriers that prevent students from continuing their education,” said Dr. Vicki Karolweics, Wallace State president, “This is just one of many ways we are supporting our students during this time.”

The College used special institutional funding received from the U.S. Department of Education’s Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) from the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) and The American Rescue Plan (ARP) to make the balance forgiveness possible.  

Students enrolling in coming semesters will be eligible to receive additional HEERF stimulus payments from the College. This additional money will be paid directly to students and may be used for any aspect of their education — tuition, food, housing, course material, technology, healthcare, childcare and other expenses.

Wallace State will be distributing at least $7 million to students in the coming year. Students who are enrolled and who qualify under the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) and the American Rescue Plan (ARP) will receive these additional funds during the semester(s) in which they are enrolled. 

The majority of Wallace State students will be qualified for the award under federal guidelines. Payments will vary. The grant allocation will also include high school students taking classes at Wallace State through the Dual Enrollment Program. 

Wallace State will use existing enrollment information to allocate funds, which will be automatically distributed to all qualified students. Students do not need to contact the college to request these funds.

Wallace State Community College returned to normal operations earlier this year and is gearing up for a robust fall semester with new programs, classes and activities on campus.

The college offers numerous free and supportive resources for its students, including a tutoring lab, food pantry, success advising, mental health counseling, technology loans, veterans’ services, a mother’s lounge and more.