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January 13, 2021

SUNY Niagara will begin the spring 2021 semester on January 19 at both the Sanborn campus and Niagara Falls Culinary Institute. Most classes will operate virtually through February 1 and a limited number of SUNY approved high-contact labs will take place in-person throughout the semester. As the pandemic continues, SUNY Niagara has elected to proceed with reduced in-person capacities in order to maintain a safe learning and working environment. The College will continue to follow all federal, state, SUNY, and local guidelines. Several measures will be in place for the spring semester in order to reduce density on campus and curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Students can expect many of their courses to pivot to a flexible learning option. There are several types of instructional modalities and they include: online, hybrid, blended, and face-to-face courses. The online courses are 100% virtual and flexible. Students can conveniently learn on their own schedule while also having access to their instructors and college resources. Hybrid courses combine online learning and in-person instruction. On-campus instruction or activity may be required for some of these courses. Blended courses are 100% online and require some or all of the online instruction to occur in real-time as scheduled. Every in-person meeting will guarantee classroom sizes which can facilitate physical distancing. Masks will be required for all who enter the campus.

Before teaching in an online or hybrid modality, faculty are trained and provided with abundant opportunities for professional growth in teaching in distance learning formats through SUNY Niagara’s departments of Online Learning and the Faculty Resource Center for Academic Excellence.

Returning to Campus:
Returning residents of SUNY Niagara’s Student Housing Village will be required to bring a hard copy of their negative COVID-19 test results taken within 72 hours of moving into the dorms. New residents will be required to bring a hard copy of their negative COVID-19 results taken within five days of moving into the dorms. All students, whether commuting or residing on campus, should refer to the Guidelines for Students on SUNY Niagara’s COVID-19 webpage for a full list of instructions prior to returning to campus.

Screening Procedures:
The College will continue the COVID-19 screening process for all who enter the premises. Individuals will be required to enter through the Learning Commons, have their temperature checked, and submit a health questionnaire upon arrival. Masks are required upon entering.

Student Services and Activities:
Faculty, staff, and student-centered departments will remain open and available from Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. through 4 p.m. Students are welcome to make appointments or visit various departments including Admissions, Career and Transitional Services, Cashier’s Office, Financial Aid, Henrietta G. Lewis Library, Records and Registration, Student Success Center, Testing Center, and the Wellness Center to fulfill any need they may have as it pertains to their experience at SUNY Niagara.

The Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) will continue high-quality, professional tutoring services in both virtual and in-person sessions. Regardless of remote or on-campus learning, every SUNY Niagara student is welcome to utilize in-person ACE services. During the spring semester, ACE will be open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. In addition to tutoring services, students can utilize printers, computers, and web cameras for their online coursework. ACE’s online tutoring will begin on January 25 from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. and will run from Monday through Friday. STAR-NY tutoring, also available through ACE will begin on February 3 from 7 p.m. through midnight, operating Sunday through Thursday evenings.

Student activities will resume for the semester, though many will take place online. A limited number of in-person events for students will include cultural celebrations and awareness events, Wolf Pack Wake Up events, “Service with a Slice” community outreach, Taco Tuesdays, and Supermarket Sweep games.

SUNY Niagara plans to resume intercollegiate athletic competition in February 2021, beginning with its indoor sports of men’s and women’s basketball, women’s volleyball, and wrestling. Spring sports, including baseball, golf, and softball, along with the traditional fall sports of men’s and women’s soccer, are on track to begin competition in March.

Academic Calendar Changes
SUNY Niagara has eliminated their traditional Spring Break recess. The semester will operate steadily through May 2021, ending one week earlier than originally planned. This will mitigate the risk of travel and exposure to the COVID-19 virus and will also move Commencement to May 8, 2021.

SUNY Niagara will implement Commencement plans in accordance with New York State, SUNY, and Niagara County Health Department guidance. The College will adjust the method of the celebration based upon the conditions at that time.

The faculty and staff of SUNY Niagara are looking forward to working with returning students and are excited to welcome the newest cohort of freshman, transfer, non-matriculated, and international students. The College will continue to communicate COVID-19 related news in a timely, transparent, and understandable manner. SUNY Niagara’s Campus Safety Monitor and Vice President of Administration, Wayne Lynch, states “We are committed to exceeding safety standards just as we are committed to educational excellence.”

Media Contact Information

Denyel Beiter
Event Coordinator, Public Relations and Event Management
Phone: 716-614-5974