Course Withdrawal & Change of Grading Mode Deadline – 11/24

Greetings!

I hope this message finds you finishing up the week and looking forward to Thanksgiving recess. I also want to remind you about two important deadlines coming up next week.

The deadline to withdraw from full-semester and second-quarter classes for the Fall 2020 semester is Tuesday, November 24 at 5:00 p.m., EST.  If you need to withdraw from a course, please send a group email to the instructor, your faculty advisor, and your class dean, and attach a withdrawal form. Remember to complete your portion of the form, including your visa status and course information before you save it and attach it to your email.

If you are thinking about withdrawing from a course:

  • Do use this time to talk to your professors, your advisors, and your class dean about your concerns.
  • Do make sure you are taking advantage of all the resources available to you.
  • Do not wait until Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. to seek advice from your instructor, advisor, or dean because you probably won’t hear back from them until after the deadline has passed.

Additionally, the last day to change the grading mode for courses with the student option for the Fall 2020 semester is also Tuesday, November 24 at 5:00 p.m., EST.  Remember, courses that are listed as graded (i.e. A-F) or CR/U are not eligible for a change in grading mode.

All my best,

Dean Leathers

Updates to Dean’s List for Spring 2020 DELAYED

Good afternoon,

This is a quick note about pending updates to the Dean’s List for Spring 2020. New additions to the Dean’s List were calculated and scheduled to be added manually to the roster by September 30th. Unfortunately, there were unanticipated delays, but they should be resolved soon.

I’ve provided the amended policy/guidelines for review in case you have any lingering questions about eligibility. Note: these amended guidelines are only applicable to the Spring 2020 semester.

Students who earn a semester GPA of 93.350 or better will be named to the Dean’s List and will have a permanent transcript notation of this achievement. To be eligible, a student must have earned the GPA on at least 2.0 letter-graded credits at Wesleyan during the Spring 2020 semester and have no unsatisfactory or failing grades. Students with incomplete grades or outstanding credit will be evaluated after the grade and/or credit is posted to the Wesleyan transcript and, if eligible then, they will be added retroactively to the appropriate semester’s list. 

Many thanks again for your patience, and don’t hesitate to reach out with questions or concerns.

Take gentle care,

Dean Leathers

Correction: Important Fall and Spring Calendar Updates

This reposted message is a correction to the email sent by President Roth on October 5th.

In Monday’s message regarding fall and spring calendar updates, spring break was mistakenly noted as March 24-25. The actual dates of the two-day break, as listed on the University’s academic calendar, are Tuesday-Wednesday, March 23-24. The Office of Communications regrets the error. The below text is revised to indicate the corrected dates.


Dear friends,

With the first month of the semester under our belts, I would like to pause to acknowledge the careful planning, creative problem-solving and exemplary adherence to safety protocols that have allowed us to be together this fall. This is a proud and happy moment for us all.

At the same time, it is a precarious moment. We understand that the pandemic is still with us and that the public health context can change at any time. We are also nearing the winter months, when more time indoors and flu season could pose additional threats. With these considerations in mind, we have made the following plans:

  • Thanksgiving recess begins Wednesday, Nov. 25 and extends through Monday, Nov. 30. Classes resume remotely on Tuesday, Dec. 1, with all classes and exams conducted online for the remainder of the semester. Students with special considerations (such as international students for whom travel is not advisable or students who depend on Wesleyan for housing) may petition to remain on campus over winter break. All other students must depart no later than Wednesday, Nov. 25 at noon.
  • Students may return to campus for the spring semester beginning Friday, Feb. 5, and classes will begin online on Tuesday, Feb. 9. Students whose theses or capstone projects require them to be on campus will be able to petition to return prior to Feb. 5 on a case-by-case basis. That petition will be distributed at a later date, and consideration will be given to any petitions by those who feel their work cannot be done remotely.
  • We continue to review the risk profile for athletics and for spring study abroad programs. We will be providing updates in the coming weeks.

We expect our February return will entail similar safety precautions to those that have proved effective so far this fall: students limiting exposure and getting tested prior to traveling back to Middletown; an initial two-week quarantine period on campus (Feb. 5-20); frequent testing and procedures for supportive isolation and contact tracing; and a no-travel, two-day spring break (March 23-24), which will negate the need for a post-break quarantine period. When we return next semester, we must maintain our vigilance with respect to social distancing, mask wearing and hand washing. If all goes well, we expect the semester to end in late May, with final exams May 18-21. We anticipate hosting Commencement on Sunday, May 30, and will determine the celebration’s format, as well as the celebration for the Class of 2020, as we get closer to the spring.

We will be in touch with more specifics later this semester. These are challenging times, but I am heartened by the many ways that you have risen to these challenges. Thank you for all you are doing to care for yourselves and one another.

Sincerely,

Michael S. Roth, President

Fall 2020 Drop/Add: CLOSES TODAY Friday, September 11th 5:00pm ET

Please note that Fall 2020 Drop/Add ends TODAY Friday, September 11th at 5:00pm (ET).

Failure to resolve issues before the deadline will require students to use the petition process via their class dean.

STUDENTS MUST take the following actions before 5:00pm (ET) Friday:

  • Submit any additional enrollment requests, including tutorials
  • Accept any pending TA Tutorials (491) via the Teaching Apprentice Tutorial Link in WesPortal
  • Drop an enrolled course if they don’t plan to continue in the course
  • Change a Crosslisting for courses with crosslistings
  • Select GenEd designation for courses with dual GenEds
  • Change a Grading Mode for Student Option-graded courses in the Drop/Add system
    • After drop/add closes, you can continue to adjust the grading mode for student option courses in your Class Schedule through 5pm, November 24th.

SCHEDULE CONFIRMATION FOR STUDENTS:

  • If your schedule is correct, you can confirm your schedule in WesPortal by clicking on the link in the Drop/Add page or going directly to your Class Schedule.
  • If you’ve confirmed your schedule and now want to adjust your spring classes, you can un-confirm your schedule by clicking on the link in Drop/Add or marking your schedule as “Incorrect” in Class Schedule.

STUDENT FORUMS:

  • Student Forum leaders must follow the directions provided by Mrs. Tracey Stanley (tstanley@wesleyan.edu) to create the class enrollments.

INSTRUCTORS MUST take the following action before 5:00pm (ET) Friday:

  • Approve student enrollment requests, including tutorials
  • The status of pending TA Tutorials (491) can be viewed in the Teaching Apprentice Program link in WesPortal

CHAIRS/DIRECTORS and ADVISORS:

  • Please note that chairs/directors and advisors will be able to take action on pending student transactions through 5pm (ET) Monday, September 14th.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

Karri Van Blarcom
Senior Associate Registrar
Wesleyan University
kvanblarcom@wesleyan.edu

Updates to Dean’s List for Spring 2020 Scheduled for 9/30

Good evening,

This is a quick note about pending updates to the Dean’s List for Spring 2020. The incomplete deadline was this past Monday, and the final few rounds of grades will be available soon. New additions to the Dean’s List will be calculated and added manually to the roster by September 30th. I’ve provided the amended policy/guidelines for review. Note: these amended guidelines are only applicable to the Spring 2020 semester.

Students who earn a semester GPA of 93.350 or better will be named to the Dean’s List and will have a permanent transcript notation of this achievement. To be eligible, a student must have earned the GPA on at least 2.0 letter-graded credits at Wesleyan during the Spring 2020 semester and have no unsatisfactory or failing grades. Students with incomplete grades or outstanding credit will be evaluated after the grade and/or credit is posted to the Wesleyan transcript and, if eligible then, they will be added retroactively to the appropriate semester’s list. 

Many thanks for your patience, and don’t hesitate to reach out with questions or concerns.

Take gentle care,

Dean Leathers

Notes from the Class Dean – 7/22

Dear members of the Class of 2021,

I hope you are doing well as you consider your plans for the fall semester. I also want to take this time to draw your attention to information and resources that may be helpful.

WEBINARS

The university will host several webinars and town halls before the start of the fall semester. Several of you have asked me about testing, and a webinar is scheduled to address your questions and concerns on Thursday, July 23rd (see details below). A webinar for the arts at Wesleyan is scheduled for today, July 22nd at 2:00pm, EST.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Testing
2 p.m. ET
Webinar ID: 939 7310 4846
Password: 222623
Find your local number

You may find a complete list of the webinars on the Town Halls/Webinars page of the Reactivating Campus website.

COURSE ANNOUNCEMENT

Prof. Kolcio announced a new course that may be of interest as you contemplate modifications to your Fall 2020 schedule.

“CSPL/CGST480 ENGAGED PROJECTS is  a 1-credit course in which students design a semester-long project around a topic of their choice that engages the broader public. EPs respond to this critical moment in history by empowering students to connect their academic pursuits to what is happening in the world around them; they deepen student learning and self-reflection, ease the undeniable challenges of online and hybrid learning, and introduce students to their own agency and positionality in society.”

More background is here and here.

GRADING MODES FOR FALL 2020

Students have asked me about grading modes and whether the full range of grading options will be available for their courses this fall. Currently, grading modes for courses are not based upon the format(s) in which they are offered and they are up to the discretion of each instructor. Some courses are still letter graded only, credit/no credit only (CR/U), or students have the option to choose between the two by the posted deadline (i.e. student option). It’s my understanding that the deadline to choose a mode (with the student option) will not be the end of classes as it was for the spring, but the change of grading mode deadline, which is usually two weeks after the end of the drop/add period.

I do know there are ongoing conversations within our division of Academic Affairs about grading modes for the fall, but I have not been apprised of any modifications to the policy as of now. Additionally, changes will most likely still be up to the discretion of instructors, but there is a push to encourage them to offer letter grading and the CR/U option to students. Unfortunately, this does not guarantee that each instructor will adopt the full range of grading options for each course. More definitive details are forthcoming.

LEAVES OF ABSENCE VS. DEFERRALS

This is a quick reminder that returning students (i.e. sophomores, juniors, and seniors) are not eligible for deferrals as the university currently defines them. Incoming first-year students may request deferrals for their enrollment at Wesleyan. Returning students may request leaves of absence. This may seem like the university is splitting hairs, but clarifying the terminology will help minimize confusion, especially as it relates to how we process these requests.

Returning students may request to take a leave of absence (which effectively terminates course registration and housing assignments) by August 30th to avoid prorated charges for the Fall 2020 semester; these charges (i.e. tuition, room, board, fees) commence on August 31st. Requests to take a leave of absence are not official unless you submit them through the appropriate form in WesPortal. F-1 visa holders should also consult with my colleagues in the Office of International Student Affairs (OISA) if you plan to take a leave of absence to discuss the potential impact on your visa status, eligibility for CPT/OPT, etc.

Students may access more information about taking a leave of absence here.

BILLING QUESTIONS & FINANCIAL AID

Admissions, Financial Aid, and Student Accounts offered a joint webinar earlier this week to discuss questions that students and their families have about financial aid packages, costs for the Fall 2020 semester (and beyond), and financial aid. I’ve also fielded questions about billing, costs, and financial aid packages, and I will do my best to provide support where I can to help you address your concerns. However, I’m limited in how (and if) I can address specific questions about billing and financial aid packaging for any given semester. I don’t have access to information on each student’s account (e.g. balances, credits), and I can’t confirm whether a student will receive a material refund given their financial aid packaging for this academic year. The last thing I want to do is create or add to any confusion, and it’s important that I defer to my colleagues in the appropriate finance units to work with you to resolve issues/concerns in these areas.

Alyssa Corvi is the Financial Aid liaison for the Class of 2021 and can assist you in answering specific questions about your aid. However, I encourage you to allow at least a couple of business days for her to respond as the volume of inquiries has increased dramatically since the end of last semester.

I’ve also received specific questions about billing and the Residential Comprehensive Fee (RCF), and the information provided by my colleague in Student Accounts may offer more clarity:

Residential Comprehensive Fee

  • On-Campus (…the full RCF will be charged whether your courses are in-person, online or a hybrid.)
  • Off campus/Commuter (…if approved [by Res Life] to be off-campus, a 60% credit will be applied to your student account for the housing portion of the RCF. A request for a meal plan exemption must be submitted to Michelle Myers-Brown in dining services.
  • Remote (…fully remote, from home, no on-campus services utilized, no RCF charges)

Questions about your bill can be addressed to Student Accounts, but I encourage you to check your student account online for updates before any outreach. As Student Accounts and Financial Aid learn of official changes in the statuses of student plans (e.g. transitions to remote learning or off-campus status; leaves of absence), accounts will be adjusted accordingly. It could take 3-5 business days from the time a student submits a request to change their status for their account/financial aid package to reflect the change. I know this entire process can be stressful and frustrating, but I encourage you to be patient and to keep checking your student account online for updates.

My apologies for the length of this email, but hopefully, the information provided above is helpful. As always, don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.

Wishing you and your families good health,

Dean Leathers

OISA Drop-in Hours for F-1 Visa Students – 7/21- 7/24

The following message is from Chia-Ying Pan of the Office of International Student Affairs (OISA).

Dear International Students,

Thank you for attending the Zoom FAQ sessions last week. For those who were not able to attend, below are the links and passwords to the recorded sessions:

Zoom Session #1:
https://wesleyan.zoom.us/rec/share/3pcqCbKr_VtJSJHu4x2HXYQGBYP6aaa8gCAd_fAKn0-AX0AFge0dIKjBm9Yvsptv
Password: 3i&mu!9+

Zoom Session #2:
https://wesleyan.zoom.us/rec/share/4exFKaitxkpOac_B2m7QW74NWY_qaaa80yVM-aEIzE1_fPdmOlWTv1Bo0ZuYmrxq
Password: 4p#5@3hZ

The slides used in the Zoom sessions are attached in this email. Also, the most updated FAQs for new and returning F-1 visa holders are now published on the re-activating campus page for your reference.

Many of you asked if you can meet with me to talk further about your specific situations, below are the date/time/Zoom links for the upcoming drop-in hours. You do not need to sign up in advance. Just show up at one of the drop-in hours at the time indicated below. Please note that the time slots listed below are in Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). If you are in a different time zone, find out what time it is for you using a time zone convertor. Middletown, CT is in the same time zoom as New York, NY. You can put in New York in the time zone convertor since they website does not recognize Middletown, CT.

Tuesday, July 21, 2:00-3:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/97487831814?pwd=anJUbWVxN1ZmUWFyQkRzWUNlRy9yQT09
Meeting ID: 974 8783 1814
Passcode: 782959

Wednesday, July 22, 12:00 noon-1:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/97485159409?pwd=ZGlySk9RVlc4QWlPdGZvdHFRZjN0UT09
Meeting ID: 974 8515 9409
Passcode: 945433

Thursday, July 23, 2:00-3:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/98223226246?pwd=azEzSEU3blpublhLMUdUMDVTTE9zQT09
Meeting ID: 982 2322 6246
Passcode: 853096

Friday, July 24, 10:00-11:00 am EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/93026947462?pwd=ZTVyRDJYamQrLy93TFdnOUVsTmNOQT09
Meeting ID: 930 2694 7462
Passcode: 819832

If we have overflow from these four group advising sessions, I will add more time slots. Both new and returning international students are welcome to attend these drop-in hours. I am committed to answer all your questions and help you make a decision that works the best for you.

Take care,
Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying Sophia Pan, M.S. Ed. | Director, International Student Services
Office of International Student Affairs | Wesleyan University
Room 024, North College | 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459
P. (860) 685-3031 | OISA Facebook

Reactivating Campus in Fall – A Message from President Michael Roth

President Roth sent the following message to the campus community on July 8, 2020. I have posted it on our class blog for your convenience.

Wishing you good health,

Dean Leathers

Dear friends,

As promised in my June message, I am writing now with more specificity concerning our plans to reactivate campus in late August. Since our first priority is the health and safety of our community members, these plans may have to be adjusted in response to changing public health conditions. Whatever these challenging conditions may be, we intend to provide an excellent educational experience (on campus or remotely).

We have developed a robust set of resources on our website about our campus reactivation, including information on instruction and campus life, health and safety, and returning to work on campus. Here are some highlights:

We will begin fall classes on August 31 (one week earlier than initially scheduled), with the possibility of finishing the semester online after Thanksgiving (there will be no traditional fall break). Students will be asked to avoid large gatherings in the weeks before coming to campus and to take increasing precautions, in addition to wearing masks and social distancing. Students who are able to get tested will be encouraged to determine that they are negative for Covid-19 within 48 hours of traveling to campus. Everyone on campus will be tested shortly after arrival, and there will be frequent testing on a regular basis thereafter. Those on campus who test positive for Covid-19 will be provided with supportive isolation until they are no longer contagious. Students who test positive will be able to continue their coursework remotely.

Faculty have been given the choice as to whether they will teach their classes in person, remotely, or in some combination. It is likely that many students will have a portion of their instruction online, whether they return to campus or not. While some staff members will continue to work remotely, there will be a presence of staff on campus.  Apart from the commuting of employees (who will be tested for the virus), we expect little travel to campus.  There will be no program of intercollegiate sports or club sports, but we do plan to have safe athletic training on campus.

Despite the economic challenges we are all contending with, Wesleyan remains firmly committed to both enrolling a socio-economically diverse student body and meeting the full demonstrated need of our financial aid students. Given new regulations from Washington, Wesleyan is particularly concerned about our international students, and we are committed to doing all we can to ensure that they can continue to make academic progress in Fall 2020.

Please consult the website for detailed information most relevant to your own circumstances, and feel free to reach out to the appropriate department with your questions. We will continually update this site with more information as it becomes available. We will send out another community message in August, or sooner depending on the public health trajectory. Obviously, we are very concerned about the recent surge in cases in the South and West and are monitoring the situation closely. Our plans may have to change.

We believe in the value of an on-campus education, and the basic steps we need to take are clear. The simple act of wearing a mask consistently reduces the likelihood of transmission. Masks combined with rigorous testing, tracing and supportive isolation will make our campus safer. I look forward to a fall semester in which we take good care of one another and continue to excel in learning together.

Sincerely,

Michael S. Roth

President

Preparing for Your Thesis Virtual Info Session – This Friday (4/3/20)

 

Preparing for Your Thesis Virtual Info Session

Friday, April 3, 2020, 3pm – 4pm, EST

Join representatives from the faculty, Office of the Registrar, Olin Library, the Institutional Review Board (IRB), and the Office of Academic Advancement/Class Deans to discuss how to prepare for pursuing a thesis next academic year.

The info session will be offered online through Zoom, and you will be emailed the session access information after you submit your RSVP: https://tinyurl.com/westhesis.

We understand not every student interested in the session will be available to participate at the designated time. The session will be recorded and posted online for students to access before the end of the semester.

You may contact Dean Leathers at tleathers@wesleyan.edu if you have any questions or concerns about your RSVP and/or the scheduled session.

We look forward to hosting you on April 3rd!

Dean Leathers

 

Notes from Your Class Dean – 3/26/20

Good evening,

I hope you and your loved ones are doing well. I also wanted to take this time to check in, especially since we’re rounding the bases on our first week of distance learning and virtual Wesleyan life.

Some of you have reached out already with concerns about navigating challenging dynamics at home. Others have contacted me with requests to modify their class schedules. And a few of you have expressed concerns about completing the semester while navigating an unfamiliar, virtual landscape. No matter what, keep reaching out! None of us signed on for this, but I want to encourage you as I encourage myself to take things step-by-step and day-by-day.

While many of us no longer have unfettered access to all the people and communities we hold dear, that doesn’t mean we can’t continue to make important connections. FaceTime and Netflix/Amazon/Hulu/Peacock/YouTube/Disney+ (lest I leave out any streaming giant), or pick up the phone and call/text someone. Find new ways to maintain the networks that have been your support. I’m happy to speak with anyone about what I’ve been doing to live beyond my keyboard and touchscreens. None of my approaches are groundbreaking, and most of them don’t feel as satisfying or as cathartic as giving my little sister a hug or eating out with one of my closest friends. Even so, they’re getting me through this.

What follows is a short listing of important academic updates and resources for your review. I’ve provided a link to the Spring 2020-specific  Student Academic Resources (SAR) website where there is useful information to help you complete the semester successfully. Please note, peer advisors, course tutors, and Accessibility Services are still available to work with you.

Additionally, I invite you to keep the lines of communication open with me and your professors. Don’t hesitate to schedule a half-hour appointment or a 20-minute drop-in with me to discuss any issues or concerns; you may do so through the following link: https://tinyurl.com/deanleathers.

IMPORTANT UPDATES/RESOURCES

Credit/No Credit (CR/U) Process

Students will be allowed to move from letter grades to CR/U grading simply by notifying their professors by the last day of classes, Wednesday, May 6. Please note: all departments and minors will accept CR/U credits this semester towards their majors/minors.

Revised Timeline for Spring 2020 Pre-Registration

The university has revised the timeline for pre-registration for the Fall 2020 semester:

Planning: April 7 – 20
Scheduling: April 21
Adjustment:  April 22 – 28

The new dates for the planning period overlap with Passover. Please let me know if you have concerns about your ability to participate in academic planning during that time frame.

Fourth (4th) Quarter Drop/Add Process

The deadline to add or drop a fourth (4th) quarter course is five (5) business days from the first class meeting. You may access the 2nd/4th quarter drop/add form through the following link: https://www.wesleyan.edu/registrar/forms/DropAddForm_2nd4thQuarter.pdf

To submit your request, download the form and complete the top portion digitally (you may do this without access to a scanner as the form is now writeable). Once you have done so, forward the form to me, your course instructor, and your faculty advisor(s). If you cannot download the form, please email me (tleathers@wesleyan.edu), and I will walk you through an alternative process to submit your request.

A full listing of current, 4th quarter classes can be accessed here.

Tips for Learning in a Digital Environment

The following link provides access to resources to help you with the transition to distance learning: https://www.wesleyan.edu/sar/Spring2020.html.

Many thanks to those of you who have reached out for support and those who have given their peers support as well. I also want to give a big thank you to those of you who have wished me and my family well. Please continue to look after each other.

 

Take gentle care,
Dean Leathers