FAQ for Students

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Updated May 14, 2020

Academics

All academic courses in Block A will be completed this semester via remote teaching and learning. CHM 108 lab will be completed during the fall semester. Students should contact their Academic Internship Advisor for specific information regarding their internships.

The academic calendar for all summer blocks is unchanged.

All Block A courses, and at least the beginning of Block C courses, will be delivered online. ANS 105, BIO 108 and 111 and EVS 104 (lecture and lab) will be fully online, CHM 108 will be divided into a 3-hour lecture that will be delivered online. The corresponding 1-hour lab will be offered on-campus during the 2020-21 academic year.

We hope to be able to hold some Block B courses on campus.

The senior survey regarding possible commencement dates showed a clear preference for an earlier date if possible (June or July) and an evening event rather than a morning event. We have selected a series of dates with that in mind. Area hotels have availability on these dates. Please understand, however, that we will not know for some time (perhaps late May at the earliest) when we will be able to hold an event for several thousand people. It is reasonable to assume that we will need to reach a point at which new COVID-19 cases or hospitalizations has receded to near zero, which suggests that a June date is doubtful. Our intention is to schedule a date as soon as it is safe to do so. Potential dates include: July 25, September 5, October 17, October 31 and November 7.

We will continue to monitor study abroad locations and use recommendations from the CDC and State Department to inform whether students will be able to participate in study abroad.

Berry will communicate essential messages through your Berry email account as well as through the Berry website. Please check your email on a regular basis so you do not miss critical communication and information. Faculty will use Berry email and/or Canvas to communicate about course work.

Graduating seniors will have their undergraduate degrees conferred, as scheduled, on May 9th. Regardless of when we are able to have an in-person ceremony, your final transcripts will be available the week after May 9th.

We have heard from students about challenges you are facing and we wanted to make available to students a way you can "raise your hand" if you need help or support of any kind. Support may well look different for each student: some of you may need academic support, others may need guidance on financial aid for next year, and others still may need financial assistance for immediate needs. Whatever your need, we want to help.

A simple form has been created for you to let us know how we can help: Raise Your Hand.

An important new career exploration and job/internship search tool will be available for Berry students in about two weeks (stay tuned for more details). For now, here are two approaches for finding job or internship opportunities:

  1. Start with your own network. Remember the “Hidden Job Market” (80% of jobs are never listed publicly) and know that your best bet for finding a job or internship is to start with your own personal and professional connections. Ask your friends and family, as well as Berry faculty, supervisors, and alumni about potential opportunities they know of. If you need help getting started, Berry Career Advisors are here to help you. (Click here to schedule a Virtual Viking Career Advising appointment)
  2. As you network, you should also search these popular job and internship boards: Internships.com, LinkedIn Jobs, Indeed, Glassdoor, and Berry’s College Central Network.

Berry’s Center for Personal and Professional Development has also created a “Next Steps Toolkit” which is filled with useful tools and resources (e.g., FAQs/tips, timely articles/advice, curated LinkedIn Learning courses, etc) to help you successfully navigate your next steps during this time of COVID-19. This toolkit will be updated regularly, and additional virtual personal and professional development initiatives will be announced in coming weeks.

Campus Access

Students who will be working on campus and taking classes may remain on campus. Students not working or taking classes need to work with Residence Life to schedule a time to move out. All international students need to contact the Student Diversity Initiatives office to discuss their plans.

The Berry campus is currently closed to everyone except employees of the college, including students who are approved to work on campus. College officials will determine next steps by June 1. Further updates will be provided soon.

The college will reimburse students for 50% of the room & board fees from spring 2020 (the unused portion) that were paid using student funds. The exact amount of reimbursement a student is eligible for depends on the student’s room and board plan and the nature of their financial aid package. Commuter students who purchased a 980 FlexBucks meal plan will receive a credit for the unused balance in their FlexBucks account.

For most students, the cost of a Berry education is shared by the family and by the college. Berry College provides significant funding through scholarships and grants. Students will be reimbursed for the proportion of charges that they or their family funded. To maximize the student reimbursement, the college will consider all funds as family funded except funds from Berry scholarships and grants and funds from the State of Georgia (HOPE/TEG). State regulations require that TEG and HOPE funds be applied only to the cost of tuition and fees. Thus, for Georgia students, these funds will be subtracted first, before computing the proportion of charges funded by the student separate from that funded by Berry directly.

For example, assume the total cost of tuition & fees plus room & board for the spring semester for a student was $25,158. If the student received $2,627 in HOPE and TEG funding, that amount is subtracted from the cost of tuition and fees. The spring total is now $22,531. If Berry scholarships and grants amounted to $10,000 for the semester, then the student-funded amount including other external sources is $12,531, or 56% of the revised total. The student would receive credit for 56% of the cost of their unused spring room and board plan.

Berry will provide an itemized calculation to each student based on their specific charges and aid. This information will be sent to students by May 1st. The reimbursement will be credited to each student’s account and will be first applied to any balances owed to the college. Students may use their remaining credit to cover the costs of summer school courses (online or in residence), to cover fall semester charges, or to request a refund. Credits may also be donated to the student emergency or Save a Student fund. (These donations are tax-deductible and a student may donate all or a portion of their credit).

If you have already completed a form with April 3, 2020 as the end date, you do NOT need to complete another form. If you have not completed the form, please submit your mail forwarding request immediately so we may begin forwarding your mail and packages. Please use August 21, 2020 as the ending date. https://vikingweb.berry.edu/ICS/Students/Forms_and_Reports.jnz

Upon receipt of this form, we will forward Berry paychecks, mail, and all packages that are currently here. Your mail and packages will then be forwarded each day as they are received. It would be helpful if packages you order during this time period be sent directly to your home address instead of Berry. Should you return to Berry for summer, you will be able to cancel the mail forwarding at that time.

LifeWorks

Until May 18th, we will continue our current practice of limiting student work to positions deemed critical, as has been happening since spring break. We will ask Gate Scholars to return to work on May 18th and allow others in a phased approach after that.

Yes.

Yes, but all work, including remote work, will need to be approved.

Not necessarily. We anticipate a very different summer at Berry and some Gate Scholars may be assigned to positions for the summer (temporarily) based on the operational needs of the college. In many cases, Gates scholars who are reassigned for the summer will be able to return to their regular assignments for fall semester. We will work with LifeWorks supervisors to determine the most effective use of returning Gate Scholars this summer.

Yes, if they are working full-time or a combination of classes and work equivalent to full-time. We will also have summer dining plans available for those living on campus this summer.

Yes. Starting in the fall, incoming students will be limited to 10 hours per week, returning students will normally be limited to 12 hours per week, and returning Gate Scholars will be limited to 16 hours per week.

No, not using the forms normally distributed through the LifeWorks office. However, many of you have evaluation tools you have developed and use in your areas and we encourage you to use them as appropriate and helpful. The Center for Personal and Professional Development will introduce new methods to evaluate students next year.

Summer

Berry College has canceled all 2020 summer international programs. We will assist students in identifying alternative study abroad opportunities for the future. If you have specific questions regarding International Study Abroad programs please contact: Chris Borda cborda@berry.edu.

All Block A courses, and at least the beginning of Block C courses, will be delivered online. Special arrangements have been made for science courses with labs. ANS 105 (lecture and lab) will be fully online, and the enrollment cap on ANS 105 has increased. FIN 301 has also added seats. BIO 108 and 111, CHM 108 and 109, and EVS 104 courses will be divided into a 3-hour lecture that will be delivered online. The corresponding 1-hour lab will be offered on-campus during the 2020-21 academic year.

We hope to be able to hold some Block B courses on campus.

When the college is able to return to more normal functioning, we will need students working in many areas. Please check with your supervisor or check the summer positions listed on JobX to learn of summer opportunities. We will have a smaller number of positions in May, but hope to expand in June-July.

The new minimum wage for on-campus work will go into effect as of May. Students in level 1 and 2 positions will be paid $9.00 an hour, level 3 at $9.25, and levels 4 and 5 at $9.50. In addition, if you are working full time on campus this summer, taking classes full-time, or combining work and class equivalent to full-time, there will be no charge for on-campus housing. We are also making plans for a meal plan option for students.

Yes. A recent (April 3rd) national survey of employers showed that summer internships appear to be holding up amidst this pandemic, with two-thirds of companies indicating they are proceeding with their internship plans Most of these companies have also indicated that they will likely convert internships into remote work arrangements for the summer (visit the “Next Steps Toolkit” and see the Job & Internship FAQ sheet to learn more).

That said, there are also many unknowns right now. The news and national responses to COVID-19 are changing daily, and so much about hiring depends much on the specific industry. To get regular updates from companies about their hiring plans, you can bookmark these websites: GitHub (Internship updates) and Candor (LIVE updates from hundreds of companies). You can also access a number of additional related articles/websites via Berry’s “Next Steps Toolkit”.

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