Nicholls State University will receive $1.6 million from the U.S. Department of Education and Federal Emergency Management Association to offset the impacts of COVID-19. The congressmen spoke up on Nicholls’ behalf and worked hard to ensure that Nicholls received financial support.
“Louisiana has had the compounding effects of hurricanes, floods, and the pandemic that have fatigued local recovery resources,” Rep. Graves said. “Nicholls, and all our schools, are not strangers to these challenges. It is critical that we prioritize education dollars on actually teaching our students. These federal reimbursements will help ensure that Nicholls can focus resources on their education mission and creating opportunities for Louisiana’s students.”
Of the $1.6 million, $1.1 million is coming from the Department of Education. Nicholls State University and the Southland Conference canceled many athletic events following the emergence of the pandemic, and the contracts voided as a result resulted in a loss of more than $1.1 million.
“Federal rules and bureaucracies coming out of Washington can complicate our ability to solve problems. The pandemic has been a strain on our communities and caused unique problems across the country. We have secured billions of dollars to help small businesses, the elderly, overworked healthcare employees, parents, and many others across the state. But if these funds can’t be accessed, they are useless. We worked with Nicholls and the U.S. Department of Education to provide needed flexibility on federal funding to help return to some degree of normalcy,” Graves said.
The remaining $500,000 is being awarded by FEMA to aid in the repurposing of space within Babington Halls. The rooms created within those buildings allowed for the university to safely house at-risk students, and those who had tested positive for the virus.
“COVID-19 has upended every aspect of the way we operate as a university. The way we teach, the way we interact, and the way we do business,” said Dr. Jay Clune, Nicholls President. “Thanks to the leadership and dedication of Congressman Garret Graves, we are beginning to recover some of the financial loss that we incurred over the last two years and start to focus on what we do best: educating the extraordinary people of South Louisiana.”