Important Message to ESU's Campus Community about Spring 2021 from Interim President Kenneth Long - October 14, 2020
As we continue to navigate through this very different fall semester, I want to thank everyone within our campus community for your determination not to let this pandemic keep you from reaching your goals. I genuinely appreciate our students for their tenacity in overcoming the challenges faced while learning remotely, and I am grateful to our faculty and staff as they continue to provide our students with the academic programming, support and services necessary during a time when things are everything but normal.
For many, it has been difficult to take classes remotely while managing family life, working one (or more) jobs, studying, and so much more, all while staying healthy. Some have even had to make choices between working outside of the home and childcare or eldercare. All of these decisions can be life altering. I’m proud to say that our campus community is WARRIOR strong and striving to manage these obstacles to move forward despite the barriers. We must believe these times are not forever.
We continue to monitor the national, regional and local health reports relative to COVID-19. Many states have experienced a spike in the number of positive coronavirus cases. Unfortunately in recent days Pennsylvania has joined this list, experiencing its highest seven-day virus case total since mid-April. As we stated at the start of this academic year, ESU remains committed to the health and safety of our campus community. It has to be our number one priority during this crisis, regardless of the financial burden it will place on our institution. In consultation with a wide array of administrators, faculty, students, community leaders and other university stakeholders, we have made the decision to continue providing the majority of our classes remotely for Spring 2021, with in-person instruction offered for a limited number of select courses that are necessary for a student’s academic progression, such as: clinicals, field experience, student teaching and internships. This is not how we want it to be, but we must remain steadfast in efforts to maintain the health and safety of our campus and the surrounding community. ESU’s Spring course schedule and registration will be available beginning the first week of November, specific registration dates will be available on the university’s website on or about October 21, 2020.
In the coming days, details about Spring 2021 registration, availability of on-campus housing and other information will be available on [this page] that will answer most of your questions and provide you with plenty of resources and services. We will also be posting and updating our Frequently Asked Questions with responses that convey information related to Spring 2021, and we ask that you revisit the webpage regularly to read through the information provided as it will be updated as needed. Students should also check their official ESU e-mail accounts regularly for important messages that will detail more specifics about Spring 2021 offerings. I will also host a virtual meeting for students with ESU’s senior leadership team in November to answer additional questions you may have. Details of the meeting will be coming.
Again, I thank you all for your continued confidence in ESU. Please continue to practice health safety in all you do and take care of yourself and one another.
- All divisions on campus have coordinated efforts to ensure that the small number of students who will be on campus, and faculty and staff, have proper personal protective equipment (PPE). All members of the ESU campus community and guests are required to wear masks in all public spaces and to practice social distancing (six-feet apart when possible) in accordance with CDC guidelines.
- Signage is in place in all campus buildings to remind everyone of traffic flow and other recommended CDC guidelines. Policies and procedures have been developed for those who do not adhere to University health and safety requirements associated with COVID-19.
- All individuals entering all buildings on campus must wear a face mask and continue to wear a face mask when in hallways, classrooms, public spaces, common areas, and during office visits.
- Any meetings among faculty, staff and students should continue to be conducted remotely as much as possible.
- We are asking everyone affiliated with East Stroudsburg University to monitor their own health on a daily basis. If you do not feel well, stay home, stay away from others and seek medical advice if needed.
- Whether on or off campus, it is expected that everyone will maintain social distancing at all times.
- Any member of the campus community who is symptomatic needs to be tested as well as those who have been exposed to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19. Testing is available at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono. Those who test positive for COVID-19 will be quarantined on campus in a residence hall that has been designated specifically for those who are infected.
- What should I do if I feel sick?
Students should call the ESU Health Center at (272) 762-4378 or their local health care provider. ESU students that are living on campus will be connected to a nurse for additional screening and triage. The nurse will discuss symptoms and provide guidance for medical care per CDC recommendations.
- I’m a senior. Will this prevent me from graduation? What is the status of Commencement?
The university is working diligently to ensure that students scheduled to graduate this spring will complete their course requirements and meet all graduation requirements. Please contact your department chairperson or college dean for details as to specific course requirements.
More information regarding Commencement will be forthcoming.
- Are there any changes to the academic calendar for Spring 2021?There are no changes to the academic calendar for Spring 2021. Please review the Academic Calendar for important dates, including when class begin, last day to drop, and withdrawal dates.
- How will classes be taught for Spring 2021?The majority of classes will be taught online during the Spring 2021 semester with the exception of a limited number of experientially-based courses that are required for certifications, licensures, and/or accredited programs. While planning your Spring 2021 schedule please know that the instructional modality (e.g., Remote Synchronous/RS, Remote Asynchronous/RA, Face-to-Face/FF, Hybrid/HB, and Multi-modal/MM) for each course is listed on Banner. Additional information regarding instructional modalities (i.e. definitions) can be found on WarriorFish and the Student Portal. Please contact your advisor or your department chairperson for questions specific to your program and schedule.
- How will I receive my books and class materials?
The University Bookstore expects to operate close to normal with the exception of abbreviated “in store” hours (please see website for current hours). The store is accepting orders through its website, and students are encouraged to order their books via the website to be shipped to their home address. The University Bookstore accepts book vouchers, textbook scholarships, as well as all standard tenders through the website.
For commuters or for those who may be close by and choose to come to the bookstore, the University Store is open on a modified schedule. Students are encouraged to place their order on the bookstore website and choose “in store pickup” to streamline the process. However, the store will still carry all of the required textbooks in the store. For further information, please contact email@example.com.
- Will the Alternative Grading Option be used for the Spring 2021 Semester?
ESU recognizes that some students are under tremendous stress this semester and so for Spring 2021 the University has made a decision to convert an “E” grade to an alternate coded letter, “F,” on the student’s transcript so the grade will not lower or impact the GPA. All other grades, A through D, will remain the grade and will be computed in the student's GPA.
This is a course of action that other Universities have used successfully.
As discussed in the academic year 2020-2021 COVID-19 Grading Policy below, the grade conversion for an “E” will be automatic. Students don't need to take any further action for the grading policy to apply.
ESU’s COVID-19 Grading Policy for the Academic Year (AY) 2020-21 will include all student grades for the Fall 2020, Winter Session 2021, and Spring 2021 semesters. Therefore:
If you are an undergraduate student: A grade of ‘A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, or D’ will continue to be transcripted and will affect the semester and cumulative GPA. A failing grade of ‘E’ will be converted to an ‘F’ grade as to not affect a student’s GPA. Graded AY 2020-21 courses may be repeated once. The one time repeat will not count toward the maximum number of allowable repeats detailed in the University’s Repeat Grades policy. Repeat Grades Undergraduate Catalog 2019-20, pg. 23.
If you are a graduate student: A grade of ‘A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D, or E’ will continue to be transcripted and affect the semester and cumulative GPA. During AY 2020-21, graduate students earning a grade of ‘E’ may petition for a course repeat and the repeated course will not count toward the ‘one-time repeat rule.’ Course Repeats Graduate Catalog 2019-20 pg. 26.
- Are faculty available to meet with students?Faculty are available to meet with students via email, phone, D2L or Zoom. Please reach out to your individual faculty members as needed. If you have difficulty in contacting a faculty member, please contact the Office of the Provost at (570) 422-2870 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Is the library open?
- Are tutoring services (Warrior Tutoring Center, Math Question Center, Writing Studio) available?
- Can I use my smartphone for remote classes?
Smartphones are not recommended as they are not compatible with ESU's online platforms.
Recommend Specifications for Student-owned Computers:
A computer with sufficient memory (RAM) and hard-drive space is recommended.
- Average model: for basic applications (word processing, spreadsheets, desktop publishing, Internet access, educational software).
- High end model: for multi-media applications (3D modeling, video production, etc.). For the more advanced computer user.
Average High End Processor 7th / 8th generation
i5 3.8GHz - 4.5GHz
i9 4.8GHz - 5GHz
Memory 8GB 16GB - 32GB Hard Drive
(ssd recommended and preferred)
250 - 320GB 500GB - 1TB Screen Size 13" - 15.6" 15.6" and above
Access to computers will be available for local ESU students in the Kemp Library during fall 2020. Please check the Kemp Library website for hours and further information.
- If I don’t have a computer or internet in my home, what support is available?
Local students may use the computer lab in the Kemp Library. For students who are not in the immediate area, we recommend that students visit their local public library or businesses that offer free Wi-Fi. For additional concerns and assistance, please contact the Office of the Provost at (570) 422-2820 or email email@example.com.
- How will my student teaching placement for Spring 2021 be affected?
At this time, we are planning for face-to-face student teaching placements unless school districts advise otherwise. Please contact the Office of Field Experiences and Partnerships (Jill Greenwood; firstname.lastname@example.org) for the latest information.
- What is the current status of experiential learning assignments such as internships,
externships, clinicals, labs and student teaching assignments?At this time, we expect that all students who are planning to have experiential learning assignments for Spring 2021 (internships, student teaching, and clinicals), will continue as long at the sites are open and are accepting student placements. Please contact your department chair or college dean for more specific information.
- I'm a faculty member. What do I do if I have a student who has a captioning accommodation?Faculty should contact ESU’s Office of Accessible Services Individualized for Students (OASIS) for all student accommodation needs. Please complete the Faculty Request of Captioning Educational Content online form. In addition, OASIS is using a phone app called OTTER AI, which also provides captioning. For more information on this or any other questions concerning accommodations please call OASIS at (570) 422-3954 or email email@example.com.
- I'm a student who has academic accommodations. What happens to my academic accommodations
when my courses are taught online?
The staff of OASIS wants to assure you that we will continue to support your learning as ESU is in a primarily remote learning environment.
Important things to note:
- All approved academic accommodations currently in place will remain in effect.
- Students with note takers will continue to have access to uploaded notes on Accommodate for all lectures (either pre-recorded or streaming live).
- Students with testing accommodations should continue to follow the testing protocol in provided by OASIS and contact professors prior to exam date to notify them you will be utilizing your extended time.
- Please update your ESU password when prompted. You will not be able to access Accommodate, D2L, ESU portal, etc, if you ignore these prompts if you are locked out.
For many students, online instruction is new and may be intimidating. We are here to support you. If you need help navigating online instruction please do not hesitate to contact Kim Roselli at firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
- What is the plan for international students?
- I have questions regarding my military/National Guard service. Who should I contact?Students with questions on how their military/National Guard service may impact their ESU experience during the COVID-19 pandemic should contact June Pepe, associate registrar for veterans services and records, at email@example.com.
- What students are eligible for on-campus housing for Spring 2021?ESU on-campus housing will continue to host a limited number of students within our residential facilities for the spring 2021 semester. With added precautions for their health and well-being, priority will be given to students who are in academic placements (i.e. student teachers, clinical placements, and internship sites), international students, or other special circumstances. Further information on how to apply for housing will be forthcoming to eligible students.
- How do I cancel my housing contract for Spring 2021?Residential and Dining Services released all students from their on-campus housing contract for the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semester. No actions from residents are necessary at this time.
- Will ESU be issuing refunds for residential & dining bills that have already been
paid?Charges for housing and dining were reversed for students that transitioned to remote learning during the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semester.
- What dining options will be open for on-campus students?Dining Services will be functional during the Spring 2021 semester. Please visit Campus Dish for up-to-date information regarding meal plan options, on-campus dining locations, hours of operation, and other important information.
- How do I sign up for housing for Fall 2021?Residential and Dining Services will communicate with all incoming and returning students early in the spring semester regarding the housing application and room selection timeline.
- Will there be adjustments to tuition for out-of-state residents?Out-of-state residents will receive a 15% waiver toward their non-residential tuition charge.
- Will there be adjustments to student fees for services that won't be provided in Spring
2021?Adjustments will be made to student accounts for those programs and services no longer available as a result of the change to primary remote learning.
- Where can I find more information on student billing, grants, loans, and book vouchers?Please see the Student Enrollment Center's questions for Spring 2021.
- What is the CARES Act and how can I apply to help with my current financial challenges?
The CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provides funding to individual colleges and universities in the U.S. in order to provide financial grants to students who are facing financial challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department of Education has provided general guidelines to indicate how funds are to be distributed and has given each institution discretion on how funds will be disbursed.
For more information, please see CARES Act fund request page.
- What is the status of student ID’s (eCard) – how do I receive one, and what would
I need one for this Spring?
Please visit the Campus Card Center for more information about ESU's eCard.
- What is the status of parking for the spring semester?Information on parking for the spring semester will be forthcoming. Please check this page and your ESU email for updates.
- How do I obtain a refund for my 2020-21 parking permit?Information on parking refunds will be forthcoming. Please check this page and your ESU email for updates.
- Are department offices open?All department offices remain functional for in-person and remote service, with appropriate measures taken for safety.
- What is the status of building access?
For faculty and staff and students living on or near campus that may require access to academic and administrative offices, please see the chart below and note that most of these buildings will require your e-card to access buildings. Most buildings that do not require ecard access are open 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Monday through Friday) unless there are evening or weekend classes. For access at any other time, you will need to make arrangements with your professor or the director of the office you wish to visit.
Building Name Accessibility - Is eCard Required? Beers Lecture Required Dansbury Commons (main entrance only) Not Required DeNike Required Fine Arts Required Gessner Required Koehler Fieldhouse Required Library Required Monroe Required Moore Required Recreation Center Required Reibman (front door only) Not Required Rosenkrans Required Science Technology Center Required Stroud Required University Center (main entrance only) Not Required Zimbar Required
- Are student health services at LVH-Pocono available to students?
Local ESU students experiencing symptoms (cough, fever, respiratory issues) must call the Expresscare at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono at (570) 476-3700 to be triaged, prior to visiting Expresscare.
All other students may visit Expresscare for their healthcare needs.
- Is CAPS (Counseling & Psychological Services) available for students?
ESU’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is providing remote telebehavioral health services to students via phone or ZOOM.
Students who are seeking counseling services can call CAPS at (570) 422-3277, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., and leave a message indicating they are interested in counseling. The student will receive a return call with instructions on how they may access and complete the necessary consent forms and intake information prior to receiving telebehavioral health services. Messages are checked regularly throughout the day.
CAPS counselors are licensed in Pennsylvania and are regulated to provide counseling only to students in Pennsylvania at time of service. For students not living in Pennsylvania who require and are seeking other counseling services, please call or email the ESU Health and Wellness Center Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., at (570) 422-3277 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Health and Wellness Director and/or the Health and Wellness Case Manager will help you access services in your community. If the student is experiencing a mental health crisis, they should contact 911, 211, or the National Suicide Hotline at (800) 273-8255.
- What is the status of student employment for the spring 2021 semester?For questions, please contact your student employment supervisor, or the Student Payroll Office at AskHR@esu.edu.
- Is the University Center open for Spring 2021?The University Center will be closed to students for the Spring 2021 semester.
- Is the Bookstore open?
The physical Bookstore is open with modified hours.
Students who need to order course-required materials can do so at any time, 24 hours a day, by visiting the bookstore website. Students are encouraged to order their books via the website to be shipped to their home address. The University Bookstore accepts book vouchers, textbook scholarships, as well as all standard tenders through the website.
For commuters or for those who may be close by and choose to come to the bookstore, the University Store is open on a modified schedule. Students are encouraged to place their order on the bookstore website and choose “in store pickup” to streamline the process. However, the store will still carry all of the required textbooks in the store. For store hours and further information, please check the bookstore website or contact the University Store via email at email@example.com, or by phone: (570) 422-3177.
Faculty or staff with questions regarding textbooks, please contact Joe Knorr at (570) 422-3640 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Is the Rec Center open?Yes, Campus Rec & Wellness will have the Mattioli Rec Center open. Equipment will be spread out for social distancing and will be regularly disinfected for members safety. Group fitness will run on a limited schedule and there will be small team leagues and tournaments.
- Is the Warrior Food Pantry operating?
Students should email Mary Ann Matras (email@example.com) to request food from the pantry. Students will then meet pantry volunteers at the pantry, located at St. Matthew’s Church (78 Ridgeway Street, East Stroudsburg) for pickup.
For those wishing to donate items, please visit the Warrior Food Pantry website for a list of helpful items and drop-off locations.
Additionally, for a complete list of available community meals in the area, please see the resource guide. In the guide you will find the phone numbers to each community meal, please call ahead before arriving to ensure that they continue to be operational. The Salvation Army in East Stroudsburg is a resource for food as well and can be contacted at (570) 421-3050.
Student Activities & Events
- Will Campus Life & Inclusive Excellence and Student Activities Association still provide
opportunities for co-curricular experiences, and are CLIE and SAA staff still available?
Yes, Campus Life & Inclusive Excellence and the Student Activity Association are committed to completing the educational mission and continue to engage with all students through our programs and resources. Student clubs and organizations will continue to be virtually active. To get connected and for a calendar of student events, please visit WarriorLink!
CLIE and SAA staff are available for virtual meetings, and in-person meetings by appointment. Staff members will also be available to assist with your questions by phone or email. See hours of operation.
- Will Stony Acres be open?Stony Acres will be open and available for ESU faculty, staff and student. Proper social distancing of 6 feet will be enforced. Reservations for camping and cabins are available and must be made in advance. For more information, hours of operation and reservations, please contact Madeline Constantine at firstname.lastname@example.org or (570) 223-8316.
Information on varsity athletics can be found on their website. Information will be updated as it is available from the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference and the NCAA.
- Is ESU canceling study abroad programs?No short-term study-abroad trips are scheduled. For more information, contact Director, Steve Ives, at email@example.com.
- What is the travel status for University business?Travel for University business or to conferences, nationally and internationally, was suspended effective March 6, 2020, until further notice. As an alternative to traveling on University business, consider (when possible) using remote access via Zoom, Skype, etc. We recognize that this decision has major implications for students and faculty members who have planned travel to study or on behalf of ESU, especially cost implications associated with many of these plans.
- ESU’s Office of University Relations will generate appropriate messaging and other communication initiatives to share updates. University relations will use e-mail (ESU’s official communication channel), the University website and (when appropriate) social media to share messages with students, faculty, staff, parents and the community-at-large.
- Admissions and Campus Life & Inclusive Excellence will work collaboratively to communicate the plan for Spring 2021. Any campus messaging relevant to parents and family members will be posted Parents & Families.
- ESU’s Director of Health and Wellness will work with local hospital officials and the DOH as per protocol. All positive COVID-19 cases are reported to the DOH by the lab that processed the test results. The director will also activate plans for quarantine as needed.
We understand that students, parents and other members of our ESU community have questions during this ongoing situation.
We ask that you please closely review the above FAQ’s, and be assured that important campus information will be shared via ESU email (to students, faculty and staff), on this page, on the ESU parents page, and via social media.
If you need further assistance, the form below is available to submit your questions:
- Campus Address
- 161 Smith Street, Suite 100
- (570) 422-3235
- Title of Department Leader
- Nathan Black
- Manager, Environmental, Health and Safety