Thursday, April 15, 2021

MSU to hold 75% of classes for the fall semester in person

March 5, 2021
<p>MSU&#x27;s campus on Aug. 26, 2020.</p>

MSU's campus on Aug. 26, 2020.

Photo by Annie Barker | The State News

According to a Friday email from President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., Michigan State University will be offering 75% of undergraduate classes in person.

The email said the classes will be held in hybrid, in-person and online formats, especially classes typically held in large lecture halls.

The university expects that routine mitigation testing and other public health policies will continue at some level in the fall, the email said.

Residence halls will be available to first-year students and as many other students as possible.

MSU athletics is planning to have spectators at fall events again, or as allowed by state requirements and guidelines in place at that time. The Wharton Center and Broad Art Museum are also planning events this fall.

Community-based activities will be permitted, also in alignment with local and state guidelines.

Travel restrictions will be adapted to location-based guidance.

Additionally, more employees will be returning to in-person positions this fall. More information will be coming from unit supervisors and leaders in the coming months.

"We’ve learned a lot over the course of the pandemic, and we’ve adapted our safety protocols and policies accordingly to ensure the health, safety and well-being of each of you," Stanley said in the email. "This spring, we increased our in-person offerings and nearly doubled the number of students living on campus."

Summer 2021 classes will be held mostly online, which is typical for summer semesters, the email said. Some labs may be held in person.

There will be no large summer camps or events on campus. Limited day camps that can happen primarily outdoors may occur while adhering to safety protocols.

In-person campus tours are returning this month and will continue throughout the summer.

Students will be living on campus this summer to participate in classes, labs, as well as students who primarily reside at MSU.

Stanley also said as vaccination rates continue to rise and the pandemic recedes, they will take every opportunity to add additional in-person courses to the schedule this summer.

He is also encouraging everyone to get the COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available to them. 

The state is not yet prioritizing higher education employees in the 1B “education” group, and Stanley has advocated for a change in that approach.

MSU will be able to award around $15 million in student financial aid grants under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act signed into law December 2020, and the university will be sharing information in the coming weeks.

"I am excited at the prospect of coming back together again, and I am greatly looking forward to seeing our vibrant community of students, faculty and staff fully engaged in on-campus life," Stanley said. "Optimism is a good feeling, but let’s not let our guard down. Continue to keep yourself safe, follow safety protocols and be empathetic to each other as we move toward the summer and fall semesters."

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