We answer your most frequently asked questions regarding Fall 2020 opening at Dean College.

Welcome to Dean College 

Dean College is planning to welcome students back to campus for classes starting on Tuesday, September 1, 2020. The College has been diligent in following state guidelines and in creating an operational plan that prioritizes the health and safety of our entire community.

The College has and will continue to make a substantial investment in numerous areas as we prepare our campus. From academic programs, testing and personal protective equipment to numerous construction projects in residence halls and other buildings, we are putting forth the financial resources necessary for the safest campus experience possible. 

Dean’s Fall 2020 campus guide will be available in July 2020. This multi-phased plan will focus on the development of guidelines and expectations in multiple areas for our community to follow.  


All students and families should view the below drop down list by category for all questions and answers regarding Dean's fall 2020 opening.

If you are a new student, please click on the New Student FAQ category in the drop down below for additional information.

Information as of June 29, 2020

Learn more about Fall 2020 academics, including the academic calendar, classroom guidelines and more.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

Dean College has been purposeful in redesigning our Fall 2020 academic schedule in order to meet the educational and safety needs of our students, faculty and staff in this new environment. We have reassessed our classroom capacities and room scheduling given new, social distancing and sanitation considerations. As a result, the Fall 2020 academic schedule is being modified. Graduating seniors will have access to needed classes to satisfy graduation requirements.

What is Dean’s fall academic calendar?

Fall semester classes are scheduled to begin on Tuesday, September 1, 2020 and will run through Saturday, December 12, 2020 for a 15-week semester. Classes will be held on Monday, September 7, 2020 (Labor Day) and Monday, October 12, 2020 (Columbus Day). 

On-campus instruction will conclude on Tuesday, November 24, 2020 when students depart for Thanksgiving break. There will be no classes from Wednesday, November 25, 2020 through Friday, November 27, 2020. Classes will resume online for one week beginning Monday, November 30, 2020 followed by final exams which will take place virtually and conclude on December 12, 2020.  

What will the class schedule look like?

Due to the reduction in size of many rooms because of social distancing guidelines, students can anticipate classes to begin anytime Mondays through Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Some Saturdays may also be included.  Details on individual schedule changes are not available at this time but will be shared with students by Success and Career Advisors on or before August 1, 2020.  

Will classes be in-class, online or both?

Sophomores, juniors and seniors can expect a combination of face-to-face, hybrid and online courses.  Classes for incoming freshmen are expected to be delivered primarily in a face-to-face format.  

What will the in-class experience look like for lecture and lab sections?

Every classroom has been thoroughly reviewed for proper spacing and capacity limits. All face-to-face instruction will require students and faculty to wear face coverings in the classroom and participants will be required to maintain a distance of six feet from others.  Faculty will balance face-to-face and virtual lab experiences as appropriate within face-to-face courses to accomplish course objectives. 

Will there be a change in learning support services?

Faculty and Success and Career Advisors are preparing for the Fall 2020 semester by participating in training on the use of MyCourses, digital communication tools, universal design and ADA compliance for virtual environments. As always, Dean College will deliver our academic programming with the active teaching and student support strategies that characterize our ongoing commitment to student success.

How will performing arts classes be conducted?

For dance technique classes, studio capacities have accounted for more extensive social distancing, and students and faculty will be required to wear face coverings. The program will take a scaled approach to building stamina, resistance and choreography during the Fall 2020 semester. All classes are expected to proceed as planned.

For voice classes, face-to-face meetings will take place with vocal instructors during the first week of class so that each student and instructor can develop a communication and instruction plan using college technologies. Students will be assigned individual practice rooms in which instruction will take place remotely with a vocal instructor. 

How will students be “leveled” for dance classes?

For new students, placement in dance technique courses will be based on the dance faculty’s assessment of their auditions. Students who feel they have made substantial technical progress since then may submit a video to their Admissions Counselor for consideration.

Students may appeal their assigned placement level during the drop/add period at the beginning of the semester by asking their dance instructor for feedback and then conferring with their Success and Career Advisor about amending their class schedule.

Will there be performances in the Fall 2020 semester?

Yes.  There will be performance opportunities presented to the Dean College campus community in a socially responsible manner. Some of these will include in-class and faculty projects such as repertory dance works, devised and scripted theatrical and musical works, in addition to works created by dance and theatre students.   

Learn more about move-in, housing, dining, athletics and more.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

What type of safety protocols will be in place?

For those selecting to live on campus, Dean will do our best to deliver an enjoyable and fruitful campus life experience.  Students should be aware however, that certain safety requirements and behavioral practices must be adhered to.  These protocols may include but are not limited to:

  • Mandatory testing that will occur upon arrival with an aggressive plan for testing throughout the semester.
  • Face coverings over mouth and nose must be worn at all times except when in your own room.
  • Adherence to directional signage, in place to minimize contact and promote distancing. 
  • Isolation on campus or at home for those who test positive, become ill or who were exposed to someone who tests positive. 
  • No outside visitors other than current Dean College students permitted in residence halls, including daytime and overnight guests.
  • Constant observance of social distancing with a minimum distance of 6-feet apart whenever possible. 

How will social distancing be achieved?

Dean is putting in parameters to achieve optimal distancing for our community and to de-densify the campus. These measures include but are not limited to:

  • Capacity limits for all spaces on campus including but not limited to classrooms, dining halls, performance venues, athletic fields, exercise facilities and residence hall rooms. 
  • ‘No Congregation’ policy with all groups needing to adhere to guidelines mandated by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
  • Only two people at a time on an elevator, socially distanced 6 feet apart. 
  • Limited access to common areas in residence halls including lounges, kitchens and laundry. 

Move-in Instructions – New Students

Information pertaining to move-in times will be sent out at the end of July. Instructions will be emailed to each student’s Dean College account. Move-in dates for new students are as follows:

  • New International Students
    • Monday, August 24, 2020
  • New Students in our Arch Learning Community
    • Thursday, August 27, 2020 (Time to be assigned)
  • New Students who reside greater than 500 miles from campus
    • Friday, August 28, 2020 (Time to be assigned)
  • New Students who reside 91-499 miles from campus
    • Saturday, August 29, 2020 (Time to be assigned)
  • New Students who reside 0-90 miles from campus 
    • Sunday, August 30, 2020 (Time to be assigned)

Move-in Instructions – Returning students

Information pertaining to move-in times will be sent out at the end of July. Instructions will be emailed to each student’s Dean College account. Move-in dates for returning students are as follows:

  • Returning International Students
    • Wednesday, August 26, 2020
  • Returning Students who reside greater than 500 miles from campus
    • Saturday, August 29, 2020
  • Returning Students who reside 91-499 miles from campus
    • Sunday, August 30, 2020
  • Returning Students who reside 0-90 miles from campus
    • Sunday, August 30, 2020 (A–K)
    • Monday, August 31, 2020 (L-Z)

Can families enter residence halls?

During move-in, families will be able to enter the residence halls. We will be looking to minimize all guests entering these buildings once the semester begins. This is out of caution and concern for the health and well-being of all members of our community, including you as a family member. We recognize that families often bring items to students they may need, such as groceries. We ask that students plan to meet their family member(s) in the parking lot to collect any items they are bringing. If there is a circumstance where it may be difficult for items to be delivered without a family member entering the halls, we ask that prior to arrival, the student contact the Office of Residence Life to make arrangements. 

When is commuter check-in?

New commuters will check-in on August 30, 2020. Specific instructions and information for commuters will be sent out at the end of July.

  • Returning commuters will check-in on their first day of classes.

If I live close to Franklin, can I choose to commute for the fall semester and move on campus in the spring?

Yes. Returning students should contact the Office of Residence Life to discuss changing your status from a resident to a commuter. Please note, your scholarship and possibly other financial aid may be adjusted. New students should contact the Admissions Office to discuss changing your status from a resident to a commuter. Please note, your scholarship and possibly other financial aid may be adjusted.

How will food service work in the Smith Dining Center and other food service areas?

For our dining services, Dean partners with Sodexo, a global company servicing numerous colleges and large organizations around the world. Together we have been creating dining center safety standards including meal preparation, staffing, seating, serving, ordering and Grab and Go options. This plan will be completed and shared with our operational plan in July 2020.

What will student activities and peer interaction look like with social distancing?

Students will have the opportunity to join one of our many student run organizations on campus as well as take part in a diverse calendar of programs. We will be following social distancing guidelines when developing these activities. This may include asking students to sign up for events, offering an event multiple times, as well as hosting virtual events.  

Students will be expected to adhere to social distancing guidelines and use face coverings at all activities. 

Will freshmen be allowed to bring a car on campus?

No, unless there is a documented medical or financial reason. There will be shuttle buses, adhering to social distancing guidelines, to take students to local shopping plazas multiple times per week for essential shopping (i.e. prescriptions, groceries, etc.).

Will Dean have fall athletics?

Dean College belongs to the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) for all sports except football which competes in the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC). We have been working closely with both conferences and the NCAA on a specific plan and logistics to compete. 

When are student-athletes due back on campus?

As we prepare for the Fall 2020 athletic season, it has been determined that all students, including fall student-athletes, will return to campus from August 24 through August 31. Please check the Campus Life Move-In Instructions on the Dean College website for your move-in date.  You will receive further information from the Office of Residence Life regarding your specific time for move in. 

Learn more about health and safety measures at Dean.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

How is Dean keeping students, staff and faculty safe?

Dean is strictly adhering to guidelines from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) regarding social distancing and personal protection. All Community members will be educated both before they return to campus and throughout the fall semester focusing on best practices to keep themselves and others safe during the pandemic. In addition, every member of our Community will be required to wear a face covering in public and common spaces, including classrooms. 

Is Dean testing?

Yes. Mandatory testing that will occur upon arrival to campus with an aggressive plan for testing throughout the semester.

What medical support does Dean College have?

Heath Services on campus is in Chapman House and is staffed by Nurse Practitioners. The phone number is 508-541-1600. Athletic or performance related injuries are initially evaluated by our athletic trainers on campus with further evaluation by a physician as indicated. Milford Regional Hospital is our partner for emergency and urgent medical issues. This facility is located approximately 10 miles from the Dean campus.

What is the nearest hospital to the Dean campus?

Dean has a close working relationship with Milford Regional Medical Center. This hospital is located approximately 10 miles from Dean College. 

How will Dean handle any COVID-19 related medical issues?

Students will contact the Health Services office in Chapman House and a telehealth appointment will be conducted with a Nurse Practitioner. Based on the medical evaluation, the student will be advised of next steps.  The phone number is 508-541-1600.

Dean has dedicated space for isolation and quarantine as needed and the ability to follow guidelines as directed by the CDC and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. We do strongly recommend that families make a custom plan in case your student should become ill with COVID-19. Going home for the length of the isolation or quarantine is the recommendation of health professionals if possible. 

Will everyone be expected to wear masks/face coverings?

Yes. All students, staff and faculty will be required to wear face coverings when on campus.

What supplies should I be prepared to bring with me when I move on campus?

You should bring multiple face coverings as it will be important to wash them with regularity. Students need to come to campus with a thermometer, wipes for cleaning and hand sanitizer. 

How will Dean enforce social distancing guidelines?

Policies will be outlined in the Student Code of Conduct. Students will be educated on these policies through meetings, on-campus signage and social media platforms. In addition, Campus Safety, Law Enforcement Services and Residence Life will be conducting rounds of campus in the day and evening. Those students who are in violation of the policy may be referred to the Office of Student Conduct for disciplinary action. 

Will campus safety be impacted by COVID-19? 

No. Campus Safety and Law Enforcement Services officers will continue to patrol campus on a 24/7 basis. Officers will be wearing personal protection and maintain social distancing unless the circumstances dictate otherwise.

Learn more about financial aid, including tuition, billing, work-study and more.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

My family’s income has been impacted by COVID-19. Can I be considered for additional financial aid?

Yes. Submit an appeal letter explaining your family’s circumstances to the Student Financial Planning and Services office. You may email this to letter to the Office of Student Financial Planning and Services. For more information on how to appeal call 508-541-1518.

Will tuition be adjusted if classes are online?

No. Tuition charges are the same if a course is taught online or in person. Our staff and faculty are prepared to provide support and deliver the curriculum in either scenario. 

When is the Fall 2020 bill due? 

Fall 2020 electronic tuition bills were made available on Wednesday, June 17, 2020. A link to the billing site was emailed to all students and parents. Students should use their Dean email login credentials to access the site. Fall bills are due Friday, July 17, 2020. 

If I pay my bill and then decide not to enroll this fall, will I get a refund?

Yes, if you have paid your bill and then decide not to enroll your charges will be refunded to you per the College’s refund policy. If you leave after the first day of the semester, this refund will be prorated accordingly.

If charges are adjusted this year will scholarships and financial aid also be adjusted?

Yes. Students receive scholarships based on their costs to attend Dean. If we need to adjust charges for the fall semester, a corresponding reduction in Dean funding is necessary.

Will work-study jobs still be available this fall?

Yes. We anticipate that work-study jobs will be available in the fall semester. Work study jobs are posted on DEAN Career Link, our online career services portal. 

If I don’t have work-study, will other part-time jobs be available on campus this fall? 

Yes. The College has a variety of non-work-study jobs available on campus. In addition, there are typically part-time jobs available in the local community. 

Learn more about learning support services available at Dean.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

Learning Support Services at Dean College

Student Success and Career Planning will continue to provide programs to ensure academic and personal success. Both the Robbins Family Center for Advising and Career Planning and the Morton Family Learning Center will extend hours to accommodate the extended class schedules.

Robbins Family Center for Advising & Career Planning

Success & Career Advisors will deliver individualized academic and career advising through face-to-face meetings as well as video conferencing utilizing Microsoft Teams. Scheduling meetings will be encouraged through Outlook and drop-in appointments will also be available by visiting the Robbins Family Center for Advising & Career Planning.  There will be a limited number of students who can occupy the Center at one time due to social distancing guidelines.  Success & Career Advisors will communicate with students through one-on-one meetings, phone calls, emails, texts and video conferencing.  

The Director of Career Planning and Internships will meet with students one-on-one, attend classes and provide workshops in person and remotely.  Online career resources and programs have been developed and are available through Today@Dean and DEAN CareerLink.

Morton Family Learning Center

The Morton Family Learning Center’s academic support services will continue in a seamless way, even with social distancing requirements. Our Learning Center provides plenty of space to spread out and maintain the six-foot distancing requirements. In addition, all our tutors, academic coaches, and learning support staff are skilled at hosting online meetings if students prefer to meet online. 

Peer tutoring, the Berenson Writing and Math Centers, study labs, workshops and Accessibility Services, for those students who qualify for accommodations, will all continue to be offered to all Dean students in a face-to face and online learning environment.

The ARCH Learning Community

The Arch Learning Community will provide support by: 

  • Hosting regular one-on-one Success and Career Advising meetings with students face to face and with virtual options.
  • Continuing to offer Academic Coaching.
  • Helping students every step of the way to navigate through their in-class instruction and online classroom experiences. 

We are committed to staying up to date by offering the latest technological resources, while always maintaining the strong personal connections that define the Arch Learning Community. 

Will academic support services be impacted by social distancing requirements?

The health and safety of our students will always remain our number one priority. The Morton Family Learning Center’s academic support services will continue in a seamless way, even with social distancing requirements. Our Learning Center provides plenty of space to spread out and maintain the six-foot distancing requirement. In addition, all our tutors, academic coaches, and learning support staff are skilled at hosting online meetings if students prefer to meet online. Whether in-person or online, the Learning Center will continue to offer our learning support services in a way that protects the health of all our students. 

What support is available to assist students with online classes?

Success and Career Advisors provide students with ongoing support for all classes, including online learning. In addition, any Dean student can schedule a meeting with either the Director or Assistant Director of the Morton Family Learning Center. The staff enjoys meeting with students and will gladly help them access and/or navigate the systems they will need to achieve success in their online classes.

Additional FAQs for students and families new to Dean.

*Information as of June 29, 2020*

What sort of planning is Dean currently undertaking in relation to fall opening?

Dean has a long-standing work team that responds to and plans recovery strategies for any incident that impacts our campus operations. In addition, Dean has established a COVID-19 Planning Coordination Team for the 2020-2021 academic year. This team is in the process of establishing multiple operating procedures related to campus operations.  We will release a specific plan in July 2020 in accordance with requirements from the Governor’s office. 

When is Bulldog Beginnings?

Bulldog Beginnings commences Sunday, August 30, 2020 for new students.

With staggered move in, will there be activities happening while others are moving in?

Our staff will be developing activities over the summer to welcome our students back to campus. We will be offering activities throughout move in. This may include campus tours, outdoor `games such as corn hole and ladder ball, as well as small group activities in the residence halls. All with the goal of getting students comfortable with their new surroundings and introduce them to other students.

How many classes do students take in their first semester?

Most students take between four and five classes during their first semester.  Along with that, students also are enrolled in a one credit course called Campus Connections that is taught by their Success & Career Advisor. 

When do students get their schedules?

Students will be able to view their schedules in early August 2020.  At that time, students are encouraged to visit the campus bookstore (virtually) to purchase or rent new or used books.  

What is Dean Career Advantage (DCA)?

Dean Career Advantage is an approach to ensuring that students have the tools to develop a career mindset as they navigate their college experience.  Included is a series of courses, internships, leadership activities and events that prepare students for their life after Dean.  Campus Connections (DCA 100) is taught in the first semester as a stand-alone section. All students will also be enrolled in an Introduction course in their major that works collaboratively with DCA 100.  

Will extra support be provided to first-year students?

Freshmen will benefit from enhanced instruction on utilizing the Dean College learning management system, MyCourses, along with Microsoft 365 digital communication tools to strengthen your ability to participate in virtual learning and/or professional experiences going forward, should these become necessary.  

Can students change their advisors?

Advisors work as a team with expertise in many areas.  Though not typical, a student may change their advisor if the student changes majors and it would benefit their experience.

How do students log in to Dean Career link? What login to use? 

Students log into DEAN Career Link through the student portal called Today@Dean.  All new students will receive an email at the beginning of August 2020 with their log in information.  If needed, students can reset their expired or forgotten Dean password by going to https://portal.office.com and click onto the “can’t access your account” link.

If I live close to Franklin, can I choose to commute for the fall semester and move on campus in the spring?

Yes. New students should contact the Admissions Office to discuss changing your status from a resident to a commuter. Please note, your scholarship and possibly other financial aid may be adjusted.

Can I choose to defer my enrollment to spring 2021 or fall 2021 if I don’t feel comfortable attending in fall 2020?

Yes. If you have paid your enrollment deposit you can choose to defer your enrollment to the Spring 2021 semester or the Fall 2021 semester. Contact Admissions to request a deferral.

Minimum numbers of credits required to be full time?

Most students enroll in 15 credits each semester.  The minimum number of credits to be a full-time student is 12 credits unless a student has a documented disability that recommends a reduced course load of 9 credits. 

Can I request a single room or double room?

Students are encouraged to place their room request in the housing application. Please note that single rooms are limited thus a request does not guarantee a student will have a single room in the fall. Single rooms are an additional $500 per semester.

When do students find out about their room assignments and roommates?

Students will receive their housing information at the end of July. The Office of Residence Life will send an email to student’s Dean email account directing them to check their MyHousing page, which will have their room assignment, as well as their assigned roommate.

Is Dean providing enrollment deposit extensions?

Yes. Please reach out to your Admissions Counselor for further information. 

Dean's Response to COVID-19

As Dean College continues to navigate this unprecedented situation, we are steadfast in prioritizing the health and wellness of our students, staff and faculty. View the latest updates and learn more about Dean's response to COVID-19.