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Frequently Asked Questions: Spring 2021 Return to the Hill

Return to the Hill Frequently Asked Questions

This page continues to be regularly updated with information and details during during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

If you are unable to find the answer to your question, new students should contact their admissions counselor. Returning students should contact the office of Residence Life.

Admissions FAQ

Is the Office of Admissions open to visitors?

The Office of Admissions is open for prospective student visitors. All visitors must have an appointment and follow established health and safety protocols. Learn more about visit options. 

Athletics / Student Life FAQ

Has a decision been made about winter and spring intercollegiate athletics?

In alignment with the statement released March 5 by the Centennial Conference Presidents Council, chaired by McDaniel College President Roger Casey, McDaniel has announced its plans to move forward with spring intercollegiate competition for its 10 spring sports: baseball, softball, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s outdoor track and field, and men’s and women’s tennis. Read the full release and view the FAQs that have been established.

Regardless of competition, will athletic teams be able to hold practices during the spring semester?

In alignment with the statement released March 5 by the Centennial Conference Presidents Council, chaired by McDaniel College President Roger Casey, McDaniel has announced its plans to move forward with spring intercollegiate competition for its 10 spring sports: baseball, softball, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s outdoor track and field, and men’s and women’s tennis. Read the full release and view the FAQs that have been established.

Will athletic teams be able to hold team meetings and events?

Regardless of intercollegiate competition, McDaniel’s academic schedule continues to include a daily Activity Period which can allow for practice and team activities. While all activities must follow the health and safety protocols in place, this will allow athletic teams to maintain what makes athletics at McDaniel so special—a team committed to athletic, personal and academic growth. The NCAA states that Division III athletics “place special importance on the impact of athletics on the participants” and it is through this lens that all teams are committed to continuing the development of student-athletes.

Will intramural activities be offered for the spring semester?

Decisions on available opportunities will be communicated to students once they are finalized via campus announcements and IMleagues.com.

Will student clubs and organizations be able to operate?

We understand the value of co-curricular involvement on campus through participation in clubs, organizations and athletics. The new academic schedule still includes a daily Activity Hour to give you time to engage in these pursuits. Though any form of community engagement will still need to abide by physical distancing and other health and safety guidelines, we plan for this vibrant aspect of campus life to continue.

Will student support services be available on campus?

All of our student supports will still be available, either through in-person meetings or through Microsoft Teams/Zoom conference calls. Although the modality may be changing for some office engagement in the short term, you will still have the same friendly connection you have always had to our wonderful staff in the Bursar Office, the Center for Experience and Opportunity, Financial Aid, Hoover Library, the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, the Registrar, Student Accessibility & Support Services (SASS), Student Engagement, the Wellness Center, and more. 

Campus Facilities FAQ

Will Hoover Library be open in the spring?

Librarians at Hoover Library are committed to their role with in supporting faculty and students. This remains true regardless of whether our students are on campus or engaged in distance learning. However, we also aim to prioritize the health of our staff and students during this challenging time.

As we prepare for the spring semester, we base our decisions on the campus plan presented on the Return to the Hill website, and the compiled resources provided by MHEC. For any questions, please contact David Brennan and Elizabeth Davidson.

Will Merritt Fitness Center and Gill Gym be open in the spring?

Reservations will be required to use Merritt Fitness Center and Gill Gym. For times and availability, visit imleagues.com (you must create a profile in order to register). The Fitness Center and Gym will not be open during the Limited Community Contact Period.  

Will the Campus Store be open in the spring?

During the limited community contact period, the bookstore will be open for online pick-ups only January 28, 2021 through February 5, 2021. Online orders may be placed at www.mcdaniel.bncollege.com Students will receive an email once their order is ready for pick-up. Rental Returns from the Fall 2020 semester can also be processed through the pick-up window.

Beginning February 8, 2021, the bookstore will resume its regular operating hours for the semester Monday-Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm.

Dining FAQ

How will dining options change in the required Limited Community Contact Period? 

During the required Limited Community Contact Period, students will place a take-out order for Englar Dining Hall (Glar) or at the Hilltop Pub. Indoor dining will not be permitted until the Limited Community Contact Period ends on February 8.

How will dining options be changed to help with social distancing?

Fewer students will be able to be in the dining facilities at one time due to physical distancing requirements and additional take-out ordering options will be available, including the new Hilltop Pub in the Roj Student Center. An app will allow students to reserve a time at their preferred dining location. We will also have additional options available to enjoy meals in outdoor settings.

Visit the McDaniel Culinary Services website for complete hours of operation. 

Will Caseys’ Corner and/or other food service options be available in the spring?

Yes. McDaniel Culinary Services plans to have several to-go and grab-and-go options available throughout campus, and students will be able to utilize the McDaniel Online mobile app. Caseys’ Corner will be set up as take out only option, as well our Hilltop Pub in the Roj Student Center.

How will students make a reservation to eat in Englar Dining Hall (Glar) or order take-out on campus?

Students will need to utilize the McDaniel Online mobile app to make a reservation in Englar Dining Hall (Glar) or to order take-out at the new Hilltop Pub or Caseys’ Corner.

To download the McDaniel Online mobile app, go to the “Transact Mobile Ordering – Food and Drink” mobile app. Select “McDaniel Online” and choose a screen icon. Then, login using your McDaniel username and password. Please note, this is the same app that residential students used to select their move in time in the fall.

Events/Visitors on Campus FAQ

Will events take place on campus this spring?

The College has made the decision to not allow on-campus events hosted by external groups through the Spring 2021 semester. Events hosted by campus constituents may occur so long as they align with all campus health and safety protocols in place.

What are the plans for Commencement?  

Commencement plans for both the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021 will be announced the first week of February. 

Are visitors allowed on campus?  

Off-campus visitors are not allowed on campus. Exceptions include visitors who have a scheduled appointment through the Office of Admissions and are escorted by a staff member or trained Student Ambassador. 

Financial Matters FAQ

Will there be any billing changes for the 2020–2021 Academic Year?

In light of the uncertainty COVID-19 has caused, McDaniel College understands that families may require additional payment flexibility for the 2020-2021 academic year.

To accommodate the needs of our students and families, McDaniel has made the following changes to our billing policies:

  • Effective July 1, 2020, the $75 enrollment fee for McDaniel’s 5-month payment plan will be waived for all families.
  • As long as payment plans are in good standing at the time of registration, no student participating in the payment plan will be prevented from registering for the next semester due to an existing balance.
  • No late fees will be issued for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  • In partnership with the Bursar’s Office, the Financial Aid staff will continue to offer one-on-one opportunities for students and their families to meet with their Financial Aid Specialist.

I'm concerned about being able to pay my bill. Are there any options for me?

Yes. Please email the financial aid office at finaid@mcdaniel.edu and your Financial Aid Specialist will reach out to discuss options with you. 

Will there be any changes to tuition for the spring semester?

McDaniel College's tuition rates for the 2020-2021 academic year can be found here. Tuition charges have been set and will not change for the 2020–2021 academic year regardless of instructional modality (online, hybrid or face-to-face instruction). Courses will continue to be taught by McDaniel faculty and we remain committed to keeping the low faculty-student ratio that is a hallmark of a McDaniel education.

Will there be any changes to room and board charges?

Room and board charges for the 2020-2021 academic year have been set and will not be changed or reduced due to changes in the academic calendar. Because room prices are highly variable based on building and single/double occupancy, students may contact the Bursar's Office for exact room costs. To provide increased flexibility, all students on a McDaniel College meal plan will receive double the amount of McDaniel Bucks for the fall semester. 

If I move off-campus, will my financial aid be impacted or reduced?

Financial aid is based off the expected cost of attendance which, in the case of a student who plans to live on-campus, includes room and board costs. Students who change their mind and therefore change their status from "on-campus resident" to "commuter" will have their financial aid package recalculated to reflect the reductions in cost and, by extension, need.  

The way the packages are recalculated are as follows: 

  • McDaniel institutional aid will be reduced by 20%. (Note: Legacy Scholarship recipients who move off campus will have their scholarship reduced by $5000.)  

Because room and board is equal to approximately 26% of total costs, the reduction in institutional financial aid by 20% when a student moves off-campus reflects the reduction in cost while also providing a buffer for off-campus expenses that may be incurred. 

What is the deferral policy for admitted students?

For students deposited for Fall 2020, our goal is to be as generous as possible with our deferral policy. This means that any student may request a deferral for up to one academic year, starting in either Spring 2021 or Fall 2021. Approved deferrals will allow students to “lock in” their financial aid package for their chosen semester and the $500 confirming deposit will be applied to their future balance. To discuss a deferral, deposited students may contact their admissions counselor. 

If I choose to take a leave of absence from McDaniel for the spring semester, how would that affect my scholarships and financial aid?

For any questions about your financial package and to discuss your personal financial situation, contact the Financial Aid Office at (410) 857-2759 or your Financial Aid Specialist.

What other resources are available for students with financial challenges?

McDaniel's Financial Aid staff continues to offer one-on-one opportunities for students and their families to meet and discuss personal financial situations with their Financial Aid Specialist.

Who do I contact if I have questions about my bill or payment plan?

Contact the Bursar's Office at 410-857-2209.

What is the undergraduate refund policy?

Undergraduate Refunds

The College must make financial commitments to its faculty, staff, and service contractors on an annual basis. It is assumed a student will not withdraw from the College during a semester. Should withdrawal become necessary because of prolonged illness or similar unusual circumstance, the following refund policy will prevail. 

I understand that I am registering for educational courses at McDaniel College (“College”) and that I am fully responsible for the cost and expense of all tuition, fees, housing, meal plans and other related educational expenses associated with my enrollment and status as a student at the College (“educational expenses”).  I further understand that payment for any amounts due for these educational expenses must be made by the deadline that is published at http://catalog.mcdaniel.edu/ and selecting “Tuition, Fees, and Financial Policies” for the semesters/terms that I am enrolled.  Should I incur any expenses for items not set forth therein, payment is due at the time they are incurred, or I am otherwise informed they are due.  Any payments not made by these deadlines will be considered an unpaid balance on my account.

Tuition, Room and Board Withdrawal Refund Policy

Fall & Spring Semesters

(for 2020-2021 the academic semester includes both Sessions A and B)

  • First week = 80% 
  • Second week = 60% 
  • Third week = 40% 
  • Fourth week = 20%
  • After fourth week = No Refund or discounts

Effective Date of Withdrawal

The effective date of withdrawal is the date upon receipt of the Withdrawal Form in the Office of Academic Affairs. Students receiving financial aid may have a portion of their original award returned to the program as required by federal regulation and the McDaniel College refund policy, thus creating a balance due to the College.  If the result is a credit balance, the credit balance will be mailed to the billing address within 3 weeks of the withdrawal date.  Please review the financial aid brochure for more information.

Credit Balances

It may happen that financial aid postings may exceed the cost of tuition, room and board. If this occurs, a credit balance will appear on the billing statement.  Refunds are automatically processed starting the second Friday of each semester.  Student refunds will be placed in the student CAMPUS MAIL.  PLUS loan refunds will be mailed as designated per the PLUS loan application. If you would like to use a portion of the credit towards books we can transfer up to $600 to your McDaniel 1Card. Please stop by the Bursar’s Office to authorize that transfer.   

Federal Title IV Aid Refunds

FEDERAL TITLE IV aid includes programs such as Pell grants, SEOG grants, Perkins Loans, Subsidized Loans, and Unsubsidized Loans. Federal regulations require McDaniel College to use these funds to pay for your tuition, mandatory fees, room and meals that we charge. Your bill or account may also include other charges on it, such as parking, McDaniel 1card, library fines etc. Federal regulations allow the college to use Title IV funds to pay for these other charges only if you authorize the college to do so.  The authorization form is available on the Bursar’s home page on the portal.

Force Majeure

I understand that there may be instances beyond the control of McDaniel College that result in a modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of the college.  Such instances may include, but are not limited to: (a) acts of God; (b) flood, fire, earthquake or explosion; (c) war, invasion, hostilities (whether war is declared or not), terrorist threats or acts, riot, or other civil unrest; (d) actions, embargoes or blockades in effect on or after the date of this Agreement; (e) action by any Governmental Authority; (f) national or regional emergency; (g) strikes, labor stoppages, or industrial disturbances; and (h) epidemic or pandemic (each a "Force Majeure Event"). 

I understand and agree that the Tuition, Room and Board Withdrawal Refund Policy above will not be offered in the case of modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of McDaniel College resulting from a Force Majeure Event, and hereby waive any and all claims against McDaniel College arising out of or related to the modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of McDaniel College that arise out of or relate to a Force Majeure Event.  However, in the event of a campus closure, the college will provide a pro-rata refund of the board plan.

If the college has to close in the middle of the semester, will I be issued a refund?

In the event that the college has to close in the middle of the semester due to COVID-19, the college's Force Mejeure policy will go into effect.  

Force Majeure

I understand that there may be instances beyond the control of McDaniel College that result in a modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of the college.  Such instances may include, but are not limited to: (a) acts of God; (b) flood, fire, earthquake or explosion; (c) war, invasion, hostilities (whether war is declared or not), terrorist threats or acts, riot, or other civil unrest; (d) actions, embargoes or blockades in effect on or after the date of this Agreement; (e) action by any Governmental Authority; (f) national or regional emergency; (g) strikes, labor stoppages, or industrial disturbances; and (h) epidemic or pandemic (each a "Force Majeure Event"). 

I understand and agree that the Tuition, Room and Board Withdrawal Refund Policy above will not be offered in the case of modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of McDaniel College resulting from a Force Majeure Event, and hereby waive any and all claims against McDaniel College arising out of or related to the modification or cancelation of classes and/or closure of McDaniel College that arise out of or relate to a Force Majeure Event.  However, in the event of a campus closure, the college will provide a pro-rata refund of the board plan.

Will the cost for campus parking permits be adjusted?

There are no plans to adjust the cost of parking permits for this academic year. Parking permits will continue to be $300 for the full academic year for all students. Students can visit the Campus Safety page on the My.McDaniel Portal to register for parking. Those with questions can contact Campus Safety at campussafety@mcdaniel.edu.

Graduate & Professional Studies FAQ

Will GPS classes be online for the spring semester?

Graduate and Professional Studies course instruction will continue to be offered online for the spring semester, with the exception of M.S. in Teaching which will have some courses delivered in a hybrid format that will require some on-campus class time.

Are there any changes to the Graduate & Professional Studies Calendar for the spring?

Spring 2021 Registration Opens: November 1, 2020

Spring Courses Begin: Payment Deadline:
8-week session I – January 11 January 1
15-week courses – January 25 January 15
8- week session II – March 19 March 9

Health/Safety FAQ

Will there be testing protocols in place for students throughout the spring semester?

Yes. Each residential student must take a rapid test upon arrival to campus and approximately 7 days later on either February 5, 6 or 7.The tests will be provided free of charge by McDaniel College and will be performed by Quest Diagnostics professionals.

In addition to providing COVID-19 testing twice to every residential student, the College is also continuing to test students weekly throughout the semester starting Feb. 15 as part of our surveillance testing program, as outlined in our  Student Prevention, Testing and Treatment Protocols for COVID-19. The sample group will contain a combination of actively enrolled residential students, actively enrolled commuter students, faculty reporting to campus and staff reporting to campus. This is in addition to the tests being administered to those who develop COVID-19 symptoms.

I’m a student coming from out of state. Is there anything that I need to be aware of before traveling to campus?

According to Gov. Hogan’s most recent travel restrictions, all individuals who visit Maryland will be required to take a COVID-19 test, which will be provided to you at move in, and obtain a negative test result. Please be aware that any student who receives a positive rapid test upon arrival will not be permitted to move on to campus and will be immediately asked to return home.

What is the required Limited Community Contact Period and why do we have it this semester when we didn’t have it in the fall?

Though we realize the inconvenience of limiting in-person social interaction, all residential students will participate in a required Limited Community Contact Period from the day they move on campus until Monday, February 8. This is an additional health and safety measure being put in place for the spring semester due to rising COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations nationally and regionally. We believe a period of limited community contact will help ensure a safe and healthy campus by minimizing the potential spread of asymptomatic positive cases on campus. This is especially important because winter weather negatively impacts safer options like outdoor dining.

Residential students will be expected to minimize in-person contact as much as possible during this period. Students will be permitted to leave their on-campus residence to pick up food and, if applicable, use a shared bathroom. Students can also be outside following social distancing and mask wearing guidelines. Residential students should plan to remain on campus and limit all community contact both on-campus and off. All classes, including hybrid and in-person classes, will be fully online for the first week to support the Limited Community Contact Period.

Commuter students should sign up to get tested on the 5, 6 or 7 if they will be participating in hybrid or in-person classes.

I am a commuter student with hybrid or in-person classes on campus. Should I take a test?  

Yes. Commuter students with hybrid or in-person classes on campus should plan to take a rapid test on February 5, 6 or 7.  

Can I leave campus for work or to visit my family or friends off-campus during the Limited Community Contact Period?

The goal of the Limited Community Contact Period is to minimize as much as possible our community members’ exposure to people during this 7-10 day period. Though going off-campus will not result in disciplinary action, it does conflict with the spirit and the goal of the Limited Community Contact Period and students are expected to remain on campus. We ask our students to remember that a successful spring semester requires each of us to follow the health and safety protocols in place as closely as possible.

Will masks be required on-campus?

Per Governor Hogan’s orders, all members of the McDaniel College community—faculty, staff, students, visitors—will be required to wear facial coverings when inside buildings and residential common areas. This includes but is not limited to:

  • When in class or in all classrooms
  • When in the library
  • When walking throughout residential spaces
  • In a department or campus office
  • When walking around in the Student Center or any communal spaces
  • When in communal gatherings or meetings, (whether formal or informal) where two or more people are present
  • In communal restrooms, except when showering or brushing teeth

All McDaniel College students, faculty, and staff reserve the right to kindly ask that students and other community members wear a face covering if they are not wearing one in a required setting. It is recommended that all students carry an extra face covering while on campus.

What type of face covering or mask is allowed?

Per Governor Hogan’s orders, faculty, staff, students, and visitors, including vendors, are required to wear face coverings at all times when in common areas of all campus buildings or in the presence of others. Face coverings do not need to be worn when eating or drinking or when isolated in a private office or private vehicle. Face coverings are also required in outside spaces when social distancing of at least six feet is not possible.

Face coverings are a critical preventive measure used to help protect others in our community. Whether disposable or reusable, it is important to understand what is defined as an acceptable face covering on our campus. All face coverings, with the exception of Humanity Shields, must:

  • be made with at least two layers of breathable material;
  • fully cover the nose and mouth and secure under the chin;
  • fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face; and
  • be secured with ties or ear loops, allowing one to remain hands-free.

The following are not acceptable face coverings: open-chin triangle bandanas and face coverings containing one-way valves, mesh material or holes of any kind. Face coverings with two-way filtering valves are acceptable. Per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, face shields cannot be used as a substitute for an acceptable face covering.

Here is a video from Consumer Reports that shows some simple steps to make sure that you are wearing your cloth mask properly.

Are there any exceptions to wearing a face covering?

We are fortunate to have a beautiful open-air campus and tents have been acquired that will expand our ability to utilize our outdoor spaces. Masks will not be required in outdoor spaces as long as physical distancing is maintained.

Other exceptions to when/where one is not required to wear a face covering (unless it is requested by another individual):

  • Residential student in your bedroom with just your roommate/roommates
  • Residential students when showering or washing their face in the floor/communal bathrooms
  • A space where you are physically eating your meal

What measures will be in place for students and employees to monitor for and prevent COVID-19?

All members of our campus community are expected to complete a daily symptom check for COVID-19. We have partnered with CampusClear for daily symptom monitoring. You can download the app by searching for CampusClear# in the AppStore or you can create an account online at www.campusclear.com.  

Students should complete this check before they engage in their daily activities outside of their residential room if they live on campus or before coming on campus as a commuting student. Faculty and staff, as well as student workers, will be expected to conduct a symptom review each day before they arrive to campus or report to work and will be asked to document that this symptom review occurred upon their arrival to campus.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified the following symptoms to be COVID-19 related:  
-Cough 
-Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing (Call 911 if you experience this)  
-Fever of 100.4 degrees or more • Chills  
-Repeating shaking with chills  
-Running nose or new sinus congestion  
-Muscle pain  
-Headache  
-Sore throat  
-Fatigue  
-New GI symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting or stomach pain  
-New loss of taste or smell 


If a student is experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, they should follow the Procedures for a Potential Exposure as outlined in theStudent Prevention, Testing and Treatment Protocols for COVID-19. 

If a faculty, staff member or student worker exhibits any of the symptoms listed above, they should not report to work. Instead, they should inform their supervisor (staff or student worker) or Dean of the Faculty (faculty) that they are experiencing symptoms and then contact their health care provider for guidance. 

What are the College's COVID-19 prevention, testing and treatment protocols for students?

COVID-19 testing protocols are central to our return to campus and we are working in collaboration with the Carroll County Health Department, who has already agreed to partner with the college should any student test positive for COVID-19.

Our Student Prevention, Testing and Treatment Protocols for COVID-19 are applicable to all students spending time on campus, both residential and commuter. These policies and guidelines pertain to the prevention of COVID-19, procedures for potential exposure or if a student receives a positive test result, student isolation and quarantine, and voluntary surveillance testing.

Those with further questions about isolation or quarantine should read this planning guide prepared to help students plan for an isolation or quarantine scenario. Included within this planning guide is the suggestion of assembling a “To Go Bag” with essentials that students will need in isolation including toiletries, comfortable clothing, masks, hand sanitizer, snacks such as protein bars, applesauce and water, thermometers, electronic devices such as cell phones, laptops, chargers, and all academic materials.  

Please note that residential students have the option to isolate at home and all students who live within 200 miles of campus should have a plan in place for isolating at home. 

Do I have to isolate on-campus?

No. We understand that many students and families would prefer for their student to isolate at home. In fact, all students who live within 200 miles of campus should have a plan in place for isolating at home. This includes preparing an isolation bag, having your academic materials organized, and identifying a transportation plan to get home. Due to the hybrid nature of our course design for the fall semester, students will be able to continue their coursework while they are isolating at home.

Compliance with all the College’s safety guidelines and restrictions is non-negotiable. It is important to note that the College’s Code of Student Conduct applies to behavior that occurs on and off campus. View the COVID-19 Sanctions Chart

Examples of behaviors that will result in swift disciplinary action include:

  • Hosting or attending a party on or off campus
  • Hosting an off-campus guest on the campus
  • Failing to comply with instructions related to isolation or quarantine

Students who do not adhere to the College’s guidelines related to COVID-19 will be referred to the Student Conduct Process. For serious violations such as hosting a social gathering either on or off campus, students could be subject to immediate removal and restriction from campus, which could potentially result in losing the ability to complete their courses. There is no financial refund for a student under these circumstances.

How will the campus community be informed if there are COVID cases on campus?

The College will utilize a green, yellow, and red notification system to inform our campus community of the success of our shared efforts in minimizing the spread of COVID-19. The design of this alert system is to provide our community members a snapshot of the effectiveness of our efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Because COVID-19 spread is a result of individual choices, our alert system is intended to help our community understand the collective impact of following health and safety protocols. 

Please be aware that the Yellow level alert status will be used within the first two weeks of the semester as we bring our community back on campus. During this time, we will be actively working to encourage the safest possible behaviors and highlighting our health and safety protocols.

In addition to being posted on our Return to the Hill website, the College's color-coded status will be communicated daily through our on-campus digital signs. Visit the COVID-19 On Campus Notification System webpage for more information about each of the alert levels.  
 
The webpage will also be updated regularly with the following information: 
 

  • Total of newly confirmed positive COVID-19 cases of our on campus population over the previous seven days.
  • Total cumulative number of positive COVID-19 cases of our on campus population.
  • Total cumulative number of Wellness Center administered tests, including the number of surveillance tests.

Will there be any new cleaning protocols to keep the campus safe?

The Housekeeping staff will frequently and thoroughly clean all campus facilities, including common and high-touch areas, in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

In order to facilitate the increased frequency of cleaning and sanitization of our campus facilities, the college has committed to nearly doubling the size of our current housekeeping staff and adding a second shift for additional coverage. 

View the updated COVID-19 Cleaning Protocols for more information on cleaning and sanitizing classrooms, offices, and other campus facilities, as well as the coordination of traffic in and out of campus spaces. 

Will the Wellness Center be open to students?

Our Wellness Center will be focused primarily on providing COVID-19 related medical care, including surveillance testing, and will not be open for walk-in appointments. Telehealth appointments will be provided for students who are seeking medical care or counseling and mental health services, unless for urgent situations.

McDaniel has also announced that starting this fall, the College will be partnering with LifeBridge Health to expand the college’s student health service offerings provided by McDaniel’s Wellness Center. Through this partnership, McDaniel students can receive routine medical care and telehealth appointments directly from LifeBridge Health. This also offers greater access to medical specialists within the LifeBridge Health Network, as well as coordination with Carroll Hospital. Read the full announcement. 

Will the Wellness Center still offer counseling and mental health services?

Yes, although walk-in appointments will not be available. Telehealth appointments will be provided for students who are seeking medical care or counseling and mental health services, unless for urgent situations.

Will campus shuttle vans be in operation for the spring semester?

Vans will be used in a limited capacity this semester and will transport two passengers at a time with a driver. Protective measures, like adding barriers between the front and back seats have been taken so those riding in the van will remain safe. These measures also include requiring masks while in the van and maintaining 6 feet of distance. View the Shuttle Van COVID-19 Health & Safety Procedures.

Housing FAQ

I have all online courses, am I still able to live on campus?

The College will make every attempt to house any student who would like to live in campus housing. Students who have in-person classes (schedule code: McDaniel Westminster Campus) and hybrid classes (schedule code: McDaniel Campus/Online) will be given priority when new housing assignments are made.

Can I have guests in my room and/or building this year?

With consideration of CDC congregate housing guidelines, guests are not permitted within the residence halls, apartments and houses. Please review the Covid-19 COVID-19 Housing Policies and Restrictions for further details and other important policies.

I am commuting and would still like a meal plan, what should I do?

A commuter student who would like to sign up for a meal plan should contact the Bursar’s Office to arrange for the plan of their choice.

When will move-in happen in January?

Information about residence hall move in will be emailed to all students by Residence Life. Students will follow the directions as outlined to reserve a residence hall move in time between January 29 - 31, through the McDaniel online mobile app. Incoming and transfer students should plan to arrive and move in the morning of January 29. Returning students should arrive and move in by January 31.

Please be aware that McDaniel will be conducting testing for COVID-19 during move in, as well as weekly throughout the semester. See McDaniel’s Student Prevention, Testing and Treatment Protocols for COVID-19 for further information about our quarantine procedures and testing protocols.

How is the College going to enforce the new campus safety and housing guidelines?

As described in the First Principles, “… Respecting others and sharing the responsibility for the common good” is our new reality in this time of COVID-19 and is fundamental to maintaining a safe and healthy campus environment for everyone.

  • Each faculty, staff and student member of the McDaniel Community is responsible for their individual actions that impact those around them.
  • It is only by everyone agreeing with this shared responsibility and displaying daily actions that reflect the guidelines that we will create a healthy, safe environment conducive to the McDaniel experience.

What if an individual does not follow the safety guidelines despite prompting by community members?

If an individual does not follow the safety guidelines despite prompting by community members, they will be asked their name and then referred to the Student Conduct Process of the College to discuss the situation. Ultimately, a student jeopardizes their ability to continue living on campus if they choose to ignore the enhanced safety measures in place pointed out to them by other community members and College officials.

Could a student possibly lose the ability to live on campus for not following the campus guidelines about social distancing, face coverings, etc?

Yes, students who do not adhere to the College’s guidelines related to COVID-19 will be referred to the Student Conduct Process and potentially removed from campus housing.

All students should take a few moments to review the COVID-19 Sanction Chart.  It is very important for students to understand the repercussions of their actions especially those that may prevent them from completing their academic courses, continuing to live on campus or staying enrolled as a McDaniel student.

 

What are the consequences for violating the safety guidelines including hosting a social gathering? 

Compliance with all the College's safety guidelines and restrictions is non-negotiable. It is important to note that the College’s Code of Student Conduct applies to behavior that occurs on and off campusView the COVID-19 Sanctions Chart.

Examples of behaviors that will result in swift disciplinary action include: 

  • Hosting or attending a party on or off campus 
  • Hosting an off-campus guest on the campus 
  • Failing to comply with instructions related to isolation or quarantine

Social Gathering Definitions

For On-Campus Residents

Three or more students socializing in a living space (room, apartment, suite or house) where one or more members of the group are found to be violating a College policy (COVID-19-Related or otherwise). (Please note that this does not alter any existing guest restriction guidelines.) 

Social gatherings may include but are not limited to the following: evidence of alcohol or other illegal substances, loud voices, music or other noise, or drinking games. 

A social host is any individual who provides a location for a social gathering to occur. In the current pandemic, social hosts who provide a location for other students to violate the COVID-19 Related Housing Policies and Restrictions assume a greater level of responsibility for these incidents and will most likely be suspended from the College.

Students who host a social gathering on campus (with or without alcohol or other illegal substances) are subject to immediate removal and restriction from campus and potentially lose the ability to complete their courses. There is no financial refund for a student under these circumstances.  

For Off-Campus Students

For students living off-campus, no matter the occupancy of the residence, a social gathering is defined as the presence of 4 or more guests inside a residence or outdoor yard area at one time.

Social gatherings may include but are not limited to the following: evidence of alcohol or other illegal substances, loud voices, music or other noise, or drinking games. 

Incidents that occur at off-campus addresses that are brought to the College’s attention through the Westminster Police Department and/or private residents that do not meet the above definition of a social gathering may still be referred to the Student Conduct Process of the College under the Code of Student Conduct.

Social events hosted at off campus locations will be considered the joint responsibility of each student living at that address. As with residential students, students who host a social gathering off campus (with or without alcohol) are subject to immediate restriction from campus and potentially lose the ability to complete their courses. There is no financial refund for a student under these circumstances. If a student living off campus does not wish to share that responsibility, the student should contact the Office of Residence Life to inquire about on campus housing.

Are students residing off campus required to abide by the same safety guidelines, including hosting social gatherings?

Social events hosted at off campus locations will be considered the joint responsibility of each student living at that address. As with residential students, students who host a social gathering off campus (with or without alcohol) are subject to immediate restriction from campus and potentially lose the ability to complete their courses. There is no financial refund for a student under these circumstances. If a student living off campus does not wish to share that responsibility, the student should contact the Office of Residence Life to inquire about on campus housing. 

View the COVID-19 Sanctions Chart

Student Employment/Work Study FAQ

Will students be able to work on campus in the spring?

Student workers should continue to report to work in the modality established by their direct supervisor. Factors to be considered include the ability to meet job responsibilities remotely, the status of students present on campus, ability to meet social distancing protocols while on campus, and technology available to support the job function. Student workers should be scheduled with staggered start and end times. This approach will avoid large numbers of individuals entering and leaving a workspace at the same time. Variances may be in 15-minute increments.

Note that all on-campus jobs will be virtual during the Limited Community Contact Period unless an exception is made by the Division’s Vice President. Face-to-face jobs will resume on February 8 at the end of the Limited Community Contact Period.

Can a student leave campus to work at an off-campus job?

There currently is no rule that prohibits a student from working off-campus, though they are being discouraged from leaving campus as this increases exposure. When students are off campus, they should continue to comply with health and safety laws, orders, ordinances, regulations and health and safety guidance adopted by the State of Maryland, local Health Department, including wearing facial coverings when inside buildings. 

Travel FAQ

Are there any restrictions in place for College-affiliated travel?

All College-affiliated/funded travel remains suspended unless expressed permission is given by the your respective vice president. Information on personal travel considerations can be found in the COVID-19 (Corona Virus) Related Travel Restrictions Policy.

Are students able to study abroad for Jan term 2021 or Spring 2021?

McDaniel has made the decision that all Jan term courses will be offered online and domestic and international travel trips have been canceled. Study abroad to McDaniel Budapest has been suspended for the Spring 2021 semester. 

Students with questions are encouraged to contact Elizabeth M. Davis, Director of International and Off-Campus Programs, at ipo@mcdaniel.edu.

Undergraduate Academics FAQ

How has the academic calendar changed for Spring 2021?

Undergraduate Academic Calendar

  • Move in Dates: January 29-31, 2021
  • First Day of Spring Classes: February 1, 2021
  • Last Day of Spring Classes: May 7, 2021
  • Semester Ends: May 14, 2021

The full undergraduate academic calendar is available here.

How is the semester model changing for Spring 2021?

The spring semester will return to our standard 15-week term with 4 courses taken at once for the duration of the semester.

What modes of instruction will be in place for spring?

There are two factors that will significantly affect the instructional model for the spring. The first is the need to provide safe, physical distancing protocols in the classroom, and the second is the reality that some of our students and faculty are unable to be physically present in the classroom due to age or other risk factors that make them more vulnerable to health complications connected to COVID-19. Given these factors, McDaniel will offer three types of classes:

  • Traditional in-person classes: As many of these classes will be offered as possible, but one of McDaniel’s significant benefits under normal circumstances—small classrooms that only have a capacity for around 20 students—becomes a constraint in this environment where physical distancing is required, which requires reducing the capacity of those classrooms to about 50%. Space limitations due to physical distancing requirements mean the number of traditional in-person classes will be limited.
  • Hybrid classes: These classes are held partially in person and partially online. This enables professors to safely meet at least once a week with smaller groups of students from the same class in traditional sized classrooms. Most 1000-level classes will be held in this format. Our Information Technology Department is upgrading a number of our classrooms to support video conferencing to facilitate a high-quality hybrid learning experience.
  • Online classes: These classes are primarily online, but faculty may still hold optional in-person activities with students throughout the session to deepen and enrich the educational experience. The majority of classes at the 2000 level and above will be in this format.

We recognize that the modality in which your classes are offered may impact your decision to live on campus for the spring semester, and you will be notified of the modality on your revised schedule when it becomes available. We are committed to working with you on a decision that best meets your needs.

What will happen if I need to quarantine but my class has in-person meetings?

While each faculty member may have a different way to handle this, given the specific assignments and expectations for their courses, all faculty will work with students during quarantine so that students can continue learning and doing assignments virtually.  

What will happen if there is a spike of COVID-19 cases in Maryland? Will all classes shift online?

We are working hard to ensure that, even if there are cases of COVID-19 on campus, we are able to safely handle them through a combined process of quarantine and testing without closing the campus. Unfortunately, it is possible that instruction may need to move online if the local health department makes this determination due to a significant outbreak. Should that need arise, the transition should be fairly seamless given the flexible way courses have been redesigned.

Will music lessons be offered for the Spring 2021 semester, and if so, how?

Private singing lessons will be allowed with the following protocols in place: 

  • Lessons will be no more than 60 minutes 

  • Lessons will utilize two rooms linked via low-latency systems for all applied lessons. 

  • The teacher and accompanist will be in Room A, while the student singer is in Room B. 

  • The teacher and accompanist will wear masks and maintain a 6 ft. distance for the duration of the lesson. 

  • The student singer will not be required to wear a mask while alone in the room. 

  • Room A will remain vacant for a minimum of 30 minutes after a lesson anytime the accompanist changes. 

  • Room B will remain vacant for a minimum of 60 minutes after each lesson to allow for adequate air exchange.  

  • Faculty and students will be responsible for cleaning of music stands, piano keyboards and other surfaces with disinfectant wipes before and after each lesson.  

  • Both rooms will be disinfected daily per campus cleaning protocols.  

How will we help maintain socially distant classrooms?

Classroom furniture has been set up to maintain a 6-foot distance; if there is a need to move seats temporarily, 6-foot distance between chairs must be maintained and furniture should be returned to its original location at the end of class.

“Place Furniture Here” indicators, designed for the front right corner of each chair, desk or table, help our students, faculty and custodial staff know where classroom furniture belongs in case it gets moved.

High-touch surfaces should be wiped down using the cleaning supplies available in the classroom upon arrival and before departure.

View the Classroom Health and Safety Guidelines.

Are there health and safety measures that will need to be adhered to in classrooms?

In conjunction with the health and safety guidelines throughout campus, Classroom Health & Safety Guidelines have also been established. It is important that students understand that if these classroom guidelines are not followed, instructors reserve the right to ask a student to leave the class.  

What Academic and Student Support Services will be available to students for the Spring?

Please visit this link for a list of operating hours and contact information for select campus services this fall. Please note that this information is subject to change.