Town Meeting

Institute to announce plan for Spring semester after Thanksgiving break

Spring semester plans—including spring sports and housing for sophomores, who are currently studying remotely—will be announced after Thanksgiving break once in-person classes end and the school transitions to remote operations for the remainder of the Fall semester. President Shirley Ann Jackson explained that Rensselaer plans to assess what needs to be done for the Spring semester in context of the Fall semester and “the overall public health situation.”

As far as plans for the Spring semester and sophomore housing, Jackson responded to Brian Anderson ’21 by saying that “we'll be putting out the information well before the second semester would start, and not unlike the way we started the fall semester, where we had an ambassador program to help students get through the testing and then the movement into their spaces.” The ambassador program connected first-year students with faculty members who served as arrival ambassadors, responsible for answering any questions the students had about the move-in process.

The Institute, according to Jackson, still intends to have the freshmen and sophomores live on campus as “the upperclassmen tend to live off campus,” but Jackson clarified by saying to “those who have special needs...we intend to accommodate.” Jackson stressed “we do test everybody coming in.”

In response to football team captain Vinnie McDonald ’21, Jackson stated that the Institute has yet to make a decision on Spring sports, as her main goals are the “health and safety of the students, and a focus on our first and foremost mission, which is education.”