Dear Students and Families: The first day of classes is now less than 40 days away. We are all excited by the prospect of a return to an academic and student experience that resembles our pre-pandemic campus environment. A critical…
Spring Semester New York City Program Update
I am writing today to provide you with an update on Syracuse University’s programs in New York City (NYC) for spring 2021. As Chancellor Kent Syverud noted in his message to the community, pandemic conditions are evolving. This is true in NYC as well as across the country and around the globe.
It remains our intention to hold residential programs in NYC for the spring semester. As we have done throughout the pandemic, our decisions regarding residential instruction will prioritize the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff. Over the holidays, we will be monitoring conditions in NYC closely with guidance from the Syracuse University Public Health Team, local and state public health officials. In making your spring semester plans, you should be aware that the University’s NYC programs—like those on the main campus in Syracuse—may be converted to remote instruction if public health conditions demand.
You should have already received the Spring 2021 COVID-19 Plan for Syracuse University in NYC, which outlines protocols for the spring semester and will be updated as necessary. This plan includes:
- Hiring a student support manager in NYC to support students during quarantine or isolation and manage the logistics of public health efforts, including testing and monitoring local conditions and regulations and providing housing for students who may need to isolate.
- Creating formal links between the University’s director of global safety and support, Barnes Center health personnel and the COVID response office to coordinate response and support for NYC program participants.
- Teaching courses in a hybrid model, which will allow any student required to quarantine or isolate to maintain their academic progress.
- Ensuring that students have the opportunity to complete all registered credits remotely in the event that in-person learning is paused or public health conditions require suspension of the NYC program.
- Applying appropriate cleaning, sanitation, air quality and physical distancing signage to University facilities in NYC.
- Conducting surveillance testing of all program participants and contact tracing for any positive cases or potential exposures.
As your program directors have previously communicated, you should make your spring semester plans with the awareness that—in the case of a move to remote instruction—the University will not be in the position to offer program or housing refunds. Unlike on our main campus, the University doesn’t own or control any housing facilities in NYC. Consistent with market terms and conditions, housing facilitated by Syracuse University in NYC does not afford the University the right to a refund as a result of the pandemic or the disruptions it causes. As a result, the University cannot provide refunds to students as we are not the “landlords” in this scenario.
I recognize that this level of uncertainty is stressful for both students and families. We are committed to ongoing communication with you about the status of programs in NYC and will share more details during the first week in January and as the public health situation changes. Please continue to visit Syracuse.edu/staysafe for the most up-to-date information about our COVID-19 planning.
Senior Vice President for International Programs and Academic Operations and Chief of Staff, Academic Affairs