Update on Spring 2021
Dear Oglethorpe Community:
I know this semester has been unlike any other, and I want to continue to commend your creativity and perseverance as we navigate these new challenges.
Dean Hall and the dedicated members of the COVID-19 Task Force, in collaboration with our thoughtful students, faculty, and staff, have done a remarkable job keeping our community as safe as possible. In the coming semester, we will continue to prioritize the health and safety of our campus community and the promotion of student success in academics, co-curricular engagement, and personal wellness.
Inclusion of the January Term & Academic Calendar
We are thrilled to announce Oglethorpe’s inaugural January term, a 4-week mini-mester to run from January 7 through February 4. Students can choose to enroll in a maximum of 5 credit hours during the January term. Courses will all be delivered remotely and will be offered at our discounted summer rate of $450/credit hour. All course offerings are currently listed in OASIS. Synchronous offerings will include the expected meeting day and times (listed in Eastern time), while asynchronous offerings will not list meeting day and times. Students, you will have the opportunity to register for January term in the same timeframe as you register for your spring courses beginning on November 9. Enrollment in January term courses is not required. Reminders about the upcoming registration period will be sent to all students from the HUB this week. More information on Jan term billing and financial aid will be posted on the HUB website shortly.
The spring semester will begin February 8 and final exams will conclude on May 18; there will be a mid-semester break on Friday, March 26. The Class of 2021 commencement will take place at 9 a.m. on May 22, and the Class of 2020 commencement will take place at 9 a.m. on May 23. More information on commencement will be announced shortly.
Course Flexibility in Spring 2021
In an effort to provide maximum flexibility, and in accordance with continued public health guidance, Oglethorpe plans to offer a combination of in-person, hybrid, and remote courses in Spring 2021.
Both in-person and hybrid courses will have an anticipated on-campus component. In-person offerings plan to have all course materials delivered synchronously on-campus, while hybrid courses will have a mix of synchronous in-person elements and some virtual content. Faculty teaching courses in-person are expected to provide alternative materials for students who are unable to attend due to illness or other circumstances. Remote courses will continue to meet virtually. The modality of all courses will be indicated in OASIS.
Low-density Residential Housing
We will continue to offer a low-density model for campus housing and students will not be required to live on-campus. Our low-density model will allow for 1 person per room, and up to 2 students sharing a bathroom. If you currently live on-campus, you will be allowed to stay in your current assignment for the spring semester. There will be options for students to change their housing assignment, or change their suitemate if desired. If you currently reside off-campus, or you are a new student for Spring 2021, and would like to move on-campus, the housing application will be released on December 1 and stay open until January 8. More information will be sent by Residence Life regarding the Spring 2021 housing application in November. Unfortunately, Greek housing will remain closed for the spring semester.
Students living on campus are expected to adhere to community guidelines including the mandatory use of face coverings in all public spaces and careful observation of social distancing measures. Residents will have access to COVID-19 testing and can expect to be tested on campus prior to move-in and on a regular basis. We are following the guidelines of public health officials and we have developed measures around contract tracing and quarantining on-campus.
Move-in for all residential students will take place on February 7. More information on athletics and move-in for athletes will be released in December.
Special Initiatives for Student Success & Engagement
In a continued effort to provide academic flexibility, the overload fee for one course will be waived again in the spring semester, which means returning students who meet the overload requirements of our University bulletin will be allowed to enroll in up to 23 credit hours at no additional cost.
I hope you have had the opportunity to explore the many remote co-curricular, professional development, and leadership initiatives offerings available. OU Connect is the best way to search for upcoming programs and events. You can also check out social media for recent updates from groups like Student Government Association @OgleSGA and Career Development @OglethorpeCareers. As a reminder, all students, faculty, and staff have unlimited access to thousands of short, on-demand personal and professional development courses through LinkedIn Learning. Counseling Services will continue be available remotely to enrolled students in individual and group sessions.
If your financial situation has been negatively impacted by COVID-19, you may be eligible to receive Emergency Assistance Funding or additional financial aid. I encourage you to stay in communication with the Office of Financial Aid.
Frequently asked questions are available on our COVID-19 website and additional information on housing, spring registration, athletics, and commencement will be sent as soon as it is available.
Your continued resilience and commitment to the Oglethorpe community are so appreciated. Stay stormy and stay well.