Ranger Restart and Coronavirus FAQ - Student
Will the campus be open for fall?
Yes, the campus will be open in the fall. For health and safety reasons, you will notice that we have made some changes in how we deliver services. Campus offices will be open for limited in-person assistance and virtual services such as online form submissions, web chats, and telehealth/counseling sessions will be offered.
Will I be required to wear a mask?
Yes, you will be required to wear a mask while on campus unless you are in your residence hall room or eating in the Brickstone Grill & Eatery.
What other safety measures is the campus putting into place?
Classrooms capacities are being reduced and spaces across campus are being re-configured to maintain proper social distancing of at least six feet between individuals. Instructors and staff will be required to wear masks or face coverings that cover both mouth and nose. High touch areas will be regularly disinfected. (e.g., door handles, buttons/switches, handrails, check-out counters, restroom surfaces, etc.).
What if my financial situation has changed?
If your or your family’s financial circumstances have changed since filing your 2020-2021 FAFSA, you should contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss amending your FAFSA application.
Continuing students who were enrolled during the Spring 2020 term (except those in online programs) may be eligible for CARES Act Emergency Aid.
Housing & Residence Life
Will housing be available for fall semester?
Yes, on campus housing will be available this fall.
Will some students be required to live on campus?
All freshman and sophomore students are required to live in University-operated housing. (The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System requires that all students with 54 or fewer credits live in University-operated housing during the academic year.)
Exemptions to the live in requirement are available for those students whose Fall term courses have been moved to a mostly on line format due to COVID-19.
How will rooms be assigned?
You will be able to choose the living option you would like. Students who want a double room are strongly encouraged to choose their own roommate. Students should complete their personal profile in MyHousing so that potential roommates can reach out and connect to discuss compatibility.
Are the residence hall rooms large enough to provide adequate social distancing?
We have verified that all of the rooms available this year as double rooms are large enough to allow for adequate social distancing. We are converting some of our double rooms to super singles for the upcoming academic year to accommodate additional requests for single rooms.
When will room assignments be made?
Continuing students will be able to choose their rooms the week of July 12, and new students will be able to choose their rooms the week of July 19. To reserve your room, you should submit your housing application by July 5.
What safety measures will be put in place for fall?
Occupancy limits will be enforced in common areas (kitchens, tv lounges, computer labs, weight rooms, laundry rooms) to ensure appropriate social distancing.
Only assigned residents and staff will be allowed in the residence halls and university apartments until further notice. No guests will be allowed in the buildings/apartments.
What will happen if someone is diagnosed with COVID-19?
We have established an isolation area for students who may need to be quarantined as a result of contracting COVID-19.
Classes and Academics
Will classes be online in the fall?
We will not be fully online unless required by the health department. To provide the safest learning environment, we are changing some courses typically taught in person to online in the fall.
Are changes being made to the fall course schedule?
Yes, there are adjustments being made in terms of how courses will be delivered as well as room locations for courses that will be held on campus. We hope to complete this process by the end of July.
I noticed there are two types of online classes, what is the difference?
For fall, we are offering traditional online courses and scheduled online courses.
Traditional Online Classes (e.g. UWP 101-001 Room: Online) have no scheduled meeting times, but, there will be regular due dates for assignments and scheduled times for quizzes and exams.
Scheduled Online Classes (e.g. UWP-101-002 Room: Online MWF 9:00-9:53) will meet virtually on the scheduled days and times.
Will there be a charge if my course is moved to an online format?
The online course fees will not be charged for any class that was previously scheduled for in-person instruction and moved online for fall due to COVID-19.
What should I do if I don’t want to take an online course?
Since we are still working on adjusting the schedule, we suggest that you wait until we have completed our revisions (late July) and then consult with your advisor to adjust your schedule. We recognize that the online format is not the best learning approach for everyone, however, we hope that most students will be able to create a schedule with a mix of online and in-person courses to help address these concerns.
What happens if I want to take all online?
With more online course options for fall, this may be possible. After the schedule is updated, work with your advisor to see whether you can adjust your schedule accordingly.
How might instruction be different in the fall?
For health and safety reasons, instructors have been asked to think differently about face-to-face instruction this fall. Some face-to-face classes may use a hybrid model which means that they will alternate between in-person and online instruction. The exact approach will vary by individual instructor.
Will there be an option for credit/no credit this fall?
At this time, we do not plan to offer a credit/no credit option for fall.
When will the bookstore be opened?
The Student Center and the UW-Parkside Bookstore are currently open Monday-Friday. (Student Center 8 AM-4:30 PM; Bookstore 8 AM-3 PM) Please check your rangers.uwp.edu email for updates as we get closer to the Fall semester. In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns, please email us at email@example.com.
When can I start ordering my books and supplies for the fall semester?
SOLAR opened on July 20 for the Fall semester. All students may bill up to $750 to their student account (including shipping fees). To bill to your account, you need your student number which can be found in SOLAR in your DARS.
Am I able to pick up my books in person?
The Student Center and the UW-Parkside Bookstore are closed through the month of July. There has not been a date set for reopening.
We strongly encourage you to order books and supplies online. The products are the same as in the Student Center Bookstore, and there is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per order.
Some advantages to ordering online, include maintaining your safety and saving you time. Another example is the depth of inventory. An example: used books can be accessed from other Follet stores at no additional cost to you.
May I avoid coming to the bookstore in person and order everything online?
Take advantage of the convenience of the online bookstore, and the depth of items available to you. There is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per online bookstore order.
Is there a deadline for ordering my books and supplies?
Please order all necessary books and supplies for Fall by August 17 to ensure delivery prior to the first day of class or move in day. There is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per online order. If you order after the August 17 deadline, express shipping option is available at an additional cost.
Technology and Other Resources
What technology will I need?
We highly recommend students not rely on their phones for doing homework in online classes. We do not advise anyone to purchase Chromebooks. Though they are cheaper than laptops, they do not work well with our online software. Our Computer Help Desk recommends the following laptop features:
- Intel i5 or i7 processor
- At least 256 Gigabyte Solid State Drive
- At least 8 Gigabyte of memory
A good resource for purchasing refurbished or inexpensive laptops is newegg.com
Do I need broadband internet service?
Trying to take an online course may be difficult if you rely on access through your phone. Hotspots did work this past semester for our students, faculty and staff. Consult with your cellular provider on pricing and monthly servicing.
Our Campus Technology Services does have a limited number of hotspots and laptops that can be loaned to students.
What if I can’t afford a computer or broadband internet service?
First, we would recommend that you take advantage of our computer labs and the free internet service available on campus. Second, continuing students who submitted a FAFSA last year may be eligible for emergency funds to cover the costs of technology. It might also be possible to request additional loan amounts to cover the cost of technology. Finally, there will be a limited number of laptops and hotspots for loan through our Campus Technology Services and laptops through the Library.
Will campus computer labs be available to students in the fall?
Yes, campus computer labs will be available for students to use in the fall. You will be required to maintain appropriate social distancing and wear masks in the labs.
Will the library be open?
Yes, the library will be open for in-person service but the library staff will continue to offer support online if that is preferred. You will see some changes throughout the library to accommodate social distancing requirements and masks will be required.
Will the Parkside Academic Resource Center be open?
The Parkside Academic Resource Center will offer both in-person and online tutoring this fall. Due to the Wyllie construction project, PARC will be located on the southeast corner of the library (L2 level) overlooking Mainplace. Social distancing and masks will be required in the PARC. More specifics about what types of tutoring will be available in what format will be posted on the PARC website as we get closer to the start of the school year.
What dining locations will be available?
The Brickstone Grill & Eatery will be the main dining facility during the fall semester. Wyllie Market will be open with reduced hours as feasible during the Wyllie Hall renovation. Molinaro Joe’s, Encore, and the Den will be closed.
What will be different?
The number of tables and chairs will be reduced and spaced appropriately. Traffic flow will be controlled with a specific entrance and exit.
The salad bar and self-serve stations will be eliminated; pre-packaged salads and other food items will be available, and meals will be served by dining staff from behind the counters.
WHAT FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE?
Future Focus Emergency Funding
- Made available by the support of our UW-Parkside Foundation
- $80,000 is designated for spring, with additional funding available for future semesters (including summer!)
Federal CARES Act funding
- The University signed the Department of Education Certification and Agreement form on April 11, 2020 confirming that we wish to deliver Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students via the CARES Act.
- $1,890,973 are available for students via the CARES Act
Any student currently attending
- Withdrawn students, and students who stopped attending prior to spring do not qualify
Funding from the CARES Act has additional criteria including:
- Meeting eligibility requirements for Federal Aid
- Attending courses that experienced disruption due to COVID-19. (Students in courses that were originally designated as online were not disrupted, and therefore do not qualify for CARES Act funding)
- Approximately 2500 students are eligible for CARES Act funding for the spring semester
WHAT DO WE NEED TO INCLUDE IN THE APPLICATION?
- Basic demographic information.
- Explanation of how COVID 19 has impacted you financially.Please, be as detailed as possible! That helps us ensure that we are meeting your needs.
Example: ‘I need help with bills’ vs ‘I can’t afford my rent ($600/month), and I’m struggling with food costs ($200/month)’.
- Whenever possible, upload documentation to support your request like billing statements, copies of your lease, utility bills, etc
ARE ANY REQUESTS NOT FUNDABLE?
- Pet care, home improvement, non-essential bill assistance (like credit cards), furniture replacement, tuition reimbursement, etc.
- Computer replacement/purchase is limited to $800
- Repeated requests may not be honored due to limited funding
HOW MUCH WILL I RECEIVE?
- This depends on your request/needs
- Generally, funding is limited to $2000, but in extreme circumstance could vary
- The average award granted is approximately $1,300.
HOW MUCH MONEY HAS UW-PARKSIDE GIVEN TO STUDENTS IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS SO FAR?
Future Focus Funds
$61,320 to 58 students
CARES Act Funding
$588,616 to 535 students
As of 5/11/2020
IF I RECEIVE EMERGENCY FUNDING, HOW DOES THE MONEY GET TO ME?
Emergency funding follows our regular institutional refunding process.
I have been accepted as a new student to Parkside. Can I apply for a U.S. visa right now? Are consulates and embassies open for visa applications?
The Department of State has announced a phased resumption of routine visa services. Please visit your local U.S. embassy or consulate website to confirm operating status and find information about appointment rescheduling or emergency services.
If you are unable to obtain a visa in time to begin your studies, please contact the ISS/SA office and we can discuss options with you. You may want to begin coursework online or defer your attendance to a later semester.
IMPORTANT: Please be aware that you are not allowed to enter the U.S. after the program start date listed on your I-20 or DS-2019.
How does switching to online instruction affect my immigration status?
You may have heard that the U.S. government had the intention of activating new regulations requiring some face to face instruction for international students. This effort was cancelled and will not be in effect for Fall.
According to current regulations, online classes are not limited to one per semester. As long as you remain a full-time student, you can maintain your visa status whether you are at the Parkside campus, or studying from home.
Because of the Covid emergency you are allowed to continue your full-time studies from your home country and still be in F-1 visa status. We do not know how long this special provision will be in effect.
Please remember that the ISS/SA Office will do everything we can to ensure that you are able to complete your educational program. Please keep watching this site in case U.S. federal requirements change.
IF I GO HOME, WILL I BE ABLE TO COME BACK TO THE U.S.?
As you all know, COVID-19 processes are changing daily. It is impossible to predict if and when further restrictions will be put in place by the U.S. or by other countries. Please check the U.S. Embassy website in your home country to keep up to date with travel restrictions.
If I travel home, do I need my I-20 signed approving travel?
If you plan to return to Parkside to complete your academic program or OPT you will need to have your I-20 immigration document signed. Please email Karin Basken or Laine Philippa from the ISS/SA Office to obtain a newly-signed document. (Additionally, Dean of Students Steve Wallner is approved to sign.) Please note that due to the pandemic, at the present time I-20 documents can be emailed to students.
IF I VACATE MY CURRENT ON OR OFF CAMPUS RESIDENCE AND RELOCATE TO A NEW UNITED STATES ADDRESS, DO I REPORT IT WITHIN 10 DAYS?
Yes, the Immigration & Nationality Act (INA § 265, 8 U.S.C. 1305) requires all nonimmigrants and permanent residents, including international students, scholars, and their families, to report any change of residential address in the U.S. to the federal government, within 10 days.
I'm really worried and stressed. Where can I find support?
With the ongoing concerns around COVID-19, we understand that there may be concern and anxiety about family around the world. In addition, with the increasing level of news coverage and concerns about the spread of the virus locally, some of you may be experiencing anxiety or stress. Please know that these reactions are normal and there are ways in which you can take care of yourself during these stressful times.
The university has health and counseling resources available to help you cope with these situations. Please visit the Student Health and Counseling website to learn more.
My visa is expiring, and I am unable to travel to my home country currently. What should I do?
You may stay in the U.S. on an expired F-1 or J-1 visa as long as you maintain your immigration status by being in possession of a valid I-20 or DS-2019 and by meeting normal enrollment requirements. (Canadian citizens do not need a visa to enter the U.S.)
My visa is expiring/has expired. If I leave the U.S. now, but must come back after the expiration date of my visa, will I need a new visa, or can I re-enter on an expired visa?
If you leave the U.S. and your visa stamp is expired by the time you wish to re-enter the U.S., then you will need to obtain a new visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate before you can re-enter to the U.S. (Canadian citizens do not need a visa to enter the U.S.)
I still need to apply for OPT. Can I do this remotely from elsewhere in the U.S.? Can I do it from outside the U.S.?
You must be physically in the U.S.at the time you submit your Optional Practical Training (OPT) application. ISS/SA will continue to process OPT applications as soon as we receive your submitted request and will communicate with you about how to pick up and mail your application to USCIS. Remember you are not allowed to submit an OPT application more than 90 days before graduation.
I WOULD LIKE TO DISCUSS MY SITUATION WITH AN INTERNATIONAL PROFESSIONAL, HOW CAN I ARRANGE THIS?
Please contact Karin Basken (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Laine Philippa (email@example.com) in the International Student Services Office. We would be pleased to set up a meeting time.