A midstate college suspends in-person instruction for the Fall semester

“It is a scenario unlike anything we have experienced, driven by a virus about which much remains unknown.”

  • Julia Agos

(Carlisle) – Dickinson College plans to move to remote instruction for the fall semester.

College President Margee Ensign says the main factor in the decision to suspend in-person classes was primarily aimed at protecting the health and safety of staff and students.

She said the college in Carlisle is concerned about the recent rise in cases, mandatory quarantine for out-of-state students, and social distancing in residential halls.

Ensign said she is disappointed to have to make this decision.

“This is not the semester for which any of us had planned. It is a scenario unlike anything we have experienced, driven by a virus about which much remains unknown,” Ensign said.

Last month, Dickinson announced their intention to resume on campus instruction. But as the pandemic evolved around the commonwealth – the administration determined the best route moving forward would be to continue remote learning.

Other schools, like Penn State, plan to use a hybrid model with a mix of in person classes and remote learning. While Gettysburg College and Franklin & Marshall plan to resume in person instruction but will not have students return to campus after traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday.

A small number of students will be permitted on-campus residence. Such exceptions include international students who need to return to campus and students without secure housing, food, or internet service.

The college is freezing tuition for the 2020-2021 academic year and will waive its student activities fee, to alleviate the financial burden felt by families, according to a press release.

“Our approach will maintain rigor and the close student-faculty relationship that characterizes a Dickinson education,” Ensign said.

Next week, President Ensign and members of the admiration will host virtual forums for students, parents, employees and alumni to answer questions and share additional information.

Dickinson’s fall semester begins on August 17.

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