What is the plan for Spring 2021?
In a message to the community on November 16, President DeGioia announced our planned approach for the Spring semester, as conditions permit, including:
- Mode of Instruction: Instruction in the Spring 2021 semester will be a combination of virtual and hybrid learning. For our undergraduate students, all classes will be offered virtually and, as conditions permit, seniors in residence or living in the DC area may be offered opportunities for hybrid instruction. We are planning for our Law, Graduate, Medical and Nursing students to have virtual classes with some hybrid elements as conditions permit. The School of Continuing Studies will be virtual in the spring.
- Academic Calendar: To reduce travel, we will compress the academic calendar. Please visit the Registrar’s website for specific calendar dates for your program.
- Residential Students: In addition to the limited number of students who were invited to campus in the Fall 2020 semester, we aim to bring back members of the senior class who will require on-campus housing. We estimate that 500 seniors will need housing on campus, bringing the total number of undergraduate residential students to approximately 1,000. A very small number of exceptions may be granted for undergraduate students whose living situations have changed substantially and who no longer have stable housing. Students whose personal or family situation makes it impossible or unrealistic to pursue their Spring 2021 studies at their permanent address should contact email@example.com.
- Campus Spaces: We are looking at providing new opportunities for studying and gathering on campus. A reservation system will provide access to certain key campus locations—with strict adherence to our public health program, including participation in our Community Compact, testing, mask wearing, physical distancing and limited gathering sizes. On the Main Campus, we will be rolling out access gradually and prioritizing seniors and residential students first. We are also looking at opening spaces specific to Graduate students.
- Access to Global WeWork locations: We are working to provide domestic and international students with access to quiet study spaces and internet access off campus, at no cost, through a new partnership with WeWork, which has office space for individuals in 800 locations in 32 U.S. cities and in 88 cities around the world.
- New Summer Semester for the Class of 2024: In the summer of 2021, if public health conditions allow for it, we hope to welcome students in the class of 2024 to campus for an optional credit-bearing residential summer session. This opportunity will allow members of the first-year class to live on campus together, forge new connections and explore life on campus.
Why did the University make this decision?
The health and safety of our community is our highest priority, along with the overarching mission of educating our students. While we recognize the loss we all feel from the continuing disruption to our normal lives, to our students’ normal college experiences, and to every part of our mission, we believe our mission and institutional values compel us to care for life and health as our first and highest priority.
As you know, COVID-19 cases continue to surge in DC, in our region and across the nation, and far exceed the rise in March that led to our move to all-virtual. Reliably maintaining Georgetown’s capacity to deliver a very robust set of health and safety protocols — regular proactive testing, active contact tracing, quarantine and isolation and lower density in residential and common spaces — will be challenged as the conditions of the pandemic nationally continue to deteriorate. For this reason we believe caution continues to be called for.
How did senior students confirm their on-campus housing for the Spring?
Seniors currently not living on campus or in the District of Columbia received communications from the Office of Residential Living with further details on how to confirm a spot in on-campus housing for the Spring. Students who did not respond by November 25 were noted as living off campus.
How will this decision impact the academic calendar?
Main campus students will begin with a delayed start, with a new combined Spring Break, according to this new academic calendar. A few graduate programs may have different calendars, as does the School of Medicine and the School of Continuing Studies, but most will follow the University’s updated academic calendar. We acknowledge that this will require some adjustment of class schedules.
All of the academic calendars for our various campuses can be found on the Registrar’s website.
What is the summer semester for the Class of 2024? Is it mandatory for first-year students?
If public health conditions permit, we are planning for an immersive introduction to life on the Hilltop for our class of 2024 during the late Spring and Summer of 2021. The summer experience will offer students a chance to connect with one another, engage with the faculty and staff for guidance, and enjoy Georgetown’s campus life in one of its residence halls. This experience will allow students the opportunity to take credit-bearing classes and to take advantage of co-curricular activities while spending time in the District of Columbia. We know that this option may be a good fit for some students but not for others, so the summer semester is not mandatory for the class of 2024. We hope to connect these Hoyas, who will be rising sophomores, with their campus home in a creative and educationally rich environment designed specifically for them.
Who will be able to access and reserve campus and study spaces?
Over the course of the Spring semester, we are looking at providing new opportunities for studying and gathering on campus. A reservation system will provide access to certain key campus locations—with strict adherence to our public health program, including participation in our Community Compact, testing, mask wearing, physical distancing and limited gathering sizes. On the Main Campus, we will be rolling out access gradually and prioritizing seniors and residential students first. We are also looking at opening spaces specific to graduate students.
What sort of resources are available to students studying remotely?
For the Spring 2021 semester, Georgetown is providing our domestic and international students with WeWork’s All Access Benefit, from February 1, 2021 through May 19, 2021. This will provide students with a quiet study space, access to high speed internet and a change of environment. WeWork’s 800 global locations are available in 32 U.S. and 88 international cities.
Who will have access to the WeWork benefit?
Access to Global WeWork locations will be made available to undergraduate and graduate students (including medical, law and nursing students) who are enrolled in spring courses (including Ph.D. students writing their dissertations). As part of the WeWork All Access Benefit for Georgetown University students, students can book common area desk space and phone booths. Credits are required to book conference rooms and private offices. Each Georgetown student will receive five (5) credits for conference room or private office bookings to use through May 19, 2021. Students will be asked to adhere to the five-credit limit, as these bookings will be monitored closely. Noncompliance with the limit could lead to the loss of your WeWork All Access membership. Students may also incur costs for replacing their lost or missing keycards. Please review the WeWork FAQs to learn more.
How can students sign up for the WeWork All Access Benefit?
To take advantage of this opportunity, students who are enrolled in classes for the Spring 2021 semester should confirm there is a WeWork location in their area and then visit we.co/georgetown to sign up using their Georgetown NetID email address. FirstName.LastName@georgetown.edu or personal email addresses will not register as eligible for the benefit. In order to enjoy the WeWork All Access membership, students must sign up on or before January 28, 2021. Note: Students must sign up at least two business days prior to the end of the month for membership to begin on the first day of the following month. Please review the WeWork FAQs to learn more.
Will the University continue to charge the same tuition rates for the Spring 2021 semester?
We will continue the same tuition reductions in place for Fall 2020: 10% for undergraduates and 5% for graduate students. The discounted rate applies to undergraduate students studying on campus and remotely, and to those living in campus residences and those living off campus.
How will this decision impact staff?
In order to lower the density of individuals on campus, many staff members will continue to telework. Certain staff members currently eligible for telework may be expected to return to campus based upon their roles, the academic and research needs of our community, and the needs of our increased student population who will be on campus in the Spring term. More information will follow from supervisors and the Department of Human Resources related to teleworking and timing of a return to campus.
We will also continue to review our Redeploy Georgetown program and will be in touch with more information on our needs for that program in the coming weeks.
How will this decision impact faculty?
Depending on the public health conditions, most faculty teaching undergraduate level classes will continue with virtual instruction, while some senior-level classes may be in hybrid mode. Many graduate level classes will be offered in hybrid modes of instruction. Any hybrid courses for the Spring are offered by faculty who chose to deliver their class in a hybrid mode.
We have gathered feedback on both our virtual instruction and 17 pilot hybrid courses this Fall and will use those insights to offer additional support and resources for instruction over the coming weeks.
What is the status of Intercollegiate Athletics?
Our women and men’s basketball teams have returned to campus and began competition in late November. Pending public health conditions, we also plan to return men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s lacrosse and men’s and women’s track & field/cross country to campus in January for training and competition. If conditions allow, we will work to bring more student-athletes back for either training and competition for the Spring and more importantly, for the 2021-22 academic year. Our goal, within permissible guidelines, is to stagger the return of as many student-athletes as possible until all are back on campus and competing.