Reconnecting at Denison for OCS Returnees
Dear Spring Returnees from Off-Campus Study,
It is an understatement to say that it has been a very, very difficult three weeks or so for many Denison students and their families. The COVID-19 pandemic has lurched all of us forward into a world of unique, complex, and unprecedented challenges.
Our office is keenly aware of the fact that all of you have been through a difficult and traumatic transition. You worked hard to prepare for study away, you departed, you arrived in your host country or host city, you made new friends, you developed a new routine with classes, you settled into a new home away from home. And then, the spread of COVID-19 forced the suspension of your program on-site, compelling almost all of you to return home and continue your studies in a remote, virtual setting.
It is not the same as being away. But you are back and we are confident you will overcome these challenges and finish the semester strong. Your program providers have worked hard to develop a plan of continuity and community for you and your peers.
So where do we go from here and what are some key priorities?
First, and foremost, we want to reconnect with you and we want to provide a space to do that with our team and with your peers. To that end, we are launching a special Notebowl group this Wednesday, April 1st. Please check your email regularly for notification of the group’s launch. We want this to be a space to share experiences, meet fellow Denisonians who were also away, and think about how the arc of this semester might be organized and woven into the broader narrative of your four-year college career.
Second, in light of the extraordinary circumstances of the semester, and the move to remote learning necessitated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we want to remind you of important changes to the university’s course drop deadline and grading policy. The course drop deadline is extended from March 30, 2020, to April 10, 2020.
Students in all class years may opt to take any course in which they are enrolled on the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis (equivalent to pass/fail).
Third, we have received questions about refunds for your program abroad. Since you paid the providers for your study away, those questions should be directed to your provider. Many have offered some kind of relief. We encourage you to reach out to them directly with any questions related to refunds.
Fourth, any questions about financial aid should be directed to Denison’s Office of Financial Aid. Their staff are best equipped to advise you in these matters. They are very busy right now, but they are dedicated to helping you.
Finally, think about becoming part of our new Denison Global Ambassador team. More details of that to come, but we are about to begin our search for students to join our student team for the next academic year. It is a great way for you to connect with other students who are interested in pursuing off-campus study, meet and work on projects with both domestic and international students, and expand the footprint of global learning at Denison.
I am again so sorry for all of this disruption. But I am also very confident that you had some amazing, wonderful experiences while away. Try to keep those moments alive in your mind. I assure you they will come in handy — and mesmerize you for the rest of your lives.
I wish you and your families the best in these challenging times.
Dr. Katy Crossley-Frolick (Dr. Katy)
Director of Off-Campus Study
Associate Professor of Political Science