Spring 2021: Academic Plans

Jennifer Lancaster, Ph.D., Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean


Thank you, Terrier family, for the commitment to education you are displaying this semester. Your dedication and perseverance helped make our new hybrid academic model – as we shared in our fall 2020 Back to Brooklyn plan – a success. We're grateful to all of you.

We're now preparing for spring 2021, and I'd like to update you on where things stand.

The health and well-being of our community remains a top priority as we continue to contend with the ongoing COVID pandemic.

Spring 2021 classes will start as scheduled on January 20th under a flexible hybrid model like the one used in fall.

That means most spring 2021 courses will be taught online only, with no in-person instruction. Students will use Canvas and other online platforms in their courses, and all professors will hold online office hours, during which time students can interact with them live.

Course instruction will take place in one of three ways:

  • Set time (synchronous): Live online instruction at scheduled times during the week.
  • Guided Online (asynchronous): Students follow an online learning path with no scheduled course meeting time.
  • Combination (both synchronous and asynchronous):One day per week of live online instruction at a scheduled time; the rest of the time, guided online learning.

More than 100 course sections and labs will also include limited in-person instruction on SFC's campus, including some sections for our upper level students and seniors. The frequency of on-campus instruction will vary depending on the course, from once per week to episodically throughout the semester.

As was the case in fall 2020, any student unable or unwilling to come to campus can complete an online version of the in-person instruction.

Please note that Terrier Communities for our freshmen conclude at the end of fall 2020. Terrier Communities brought together cohorts of freshmen for one day of in-person classes each week. In the spring, freshmen will enroll in courses under the same set up as all other students.

SFC will continue to offer services on campus too. In spring, representatives from student support offices will have some availability on campus and students are encouraged to utilize the Navigate Student app to schedule appointments both virtually and on-campus. Computer labs will continue to be available for course-related work, as will the library under a very reduced schedule, for picking up and dropping off materials only.

Campus safety protocols will remain in effect in spring 2021. These include but are not limited to completing a health screening questionnaire before arriving on campus and wearing masks and maintaining social distance inside College buildings. You should plan to be on campus in the spring only when you have a scheduled class, are using a computer lab or the library during open hours, have a scheduled meeting or athletic team practice or training, or another approved reason to be there.

Academic advisors will individually guide all returning and incoming students and answer all questions. Students can check Webadvisor for information about specific courses and will hear more from the registrar's office.

Many of you may be grappling with challenges right now that make it hard to get the most out of your SFC experience. Please know we're here to help. In addition to emailing us at backtobk@sfc.edu, you can also connect with us online, and you'll hear back quickly.

Our spring plans are subject to change based on directives from the State or City of New York and our own assessment of the situation. As our planning develops, we will update you accordingly. With any luck, we will be able to offer more opportunities for students, faculty and staff to be at 180 Remsen during the spring semester. More information will be available on SFC.edu, and you'll hear from me again soon.

It's a privilege to be with you on your educational journey. I know this year is not what most of you had in mind when you enrolled at St. Francis College. Still, I could not be more pleased to be part this Terrier family as we navigate these challenging times together.

Be safe and well.