22 New Dragon Parent Questions, Explained
Your new Drexel Dragon will join us on campus next week, but in the time leading up to Move-In Day and in the weeks to follow, there’s a lot to do. Your student’s first year at Drexel University will be a learning experience for everyone involved — for them, for you and even for your entire family.
But there’s an easy way to get a jump start on all of the forthcoming changes and transitions: learn from those who have come before you. That’s why DrexelNow asked the Drexel Family Association to come up with the questions they remember having when their new students started at Drexel, and the resources they found to help answer them. Check out these FAQs below and reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or join the Drexel Family Association Facebook group and post if there’s something you’re wondering that’s not on our list!
- What are tuition costs? Is there a difference in cost between four- and five-year students?
Tuition per term for the 2019–2020 academic year $17,382 with a $790 general per term fee. This is the same for both four- and five-year programs. Differences apply for select nursing programs and for students at Drexel satellite campuses. Part-time students are charged per credit hour.
- Where can I find the term master schedule and the academic calendar?
Find out more about your student’s classes and class schedule using the term master schedule, but note that course schedule information is subject to change at any time.
The academic calendar is helpful to determine important dates overall throughout the school year, including timing for breaks, University holidays and academic and financial reminders.
- What is DrexelOne?
The DrexelOne portal is an all-encompassing view of your student’s personal, academic and financial information as it relates to the University. Access to other services such as the University Libraries and DragonCard funds are also provided through the portal and its corresponding mobile app. If you will be paying your student’s tuition, make sure they have signed you up as an authorized user via DrexelOne so that you may view their eBill.
- How can I find out more information about my student’s co-op cycle?
Once you know whether your student will be fall/winter or spring/summer, take note of their annual schedule.
They will find out to which co-op cycle they have been assigned immediately before the academic year in which they will complete a co-op, and will be notified via their Drexel email accounts. For information on special considerations, transfer students and co-op cycle swaps, click here.
- What is senior exception?
Your new Dragon should be enrolled for at least 12 credits per term in order to remain eligible for financial aid, but when they are seniors in their final two terms, they may receive a prorated amount of financial aid funding when taking fewer credits. However, students taking less than 12 credits during each of their last two terms will also be billed per credit hour as part-time students. Find out more details here.
- What happens if my student wants to change their major?
As long as your student takes the appropriate steps and knows the limitations, changing their major should be relatively straightforward. Undergraduate students transferring from one academic program to another must obtain the approval of the new program’s advisor, department head and/or dean, and must submit a “change of academic program” form by the end of the first week of the term for the change to take effect. Some academic programs require minimum GPA requirements for transfer within the University, or may require for the student to delay their graduation in order to completely satisfy the new program curriculum.
- How important is it for my student to develop a relationship with their academic advisor?
Academic advisors help Drexel students achieve their academic and career goals, and the advisor-student relationship centers on three intended outcomes: growth as a responsible student, understanding the opportunity Drexel affords and knowing the University’s expectations. A strained or non-existent relationship with one’s advisor could jeopardize these outcomes.
- What academic support is available? How can I encourage my new student to ask for help early if they are having difficulty in classes?
Drexel boasts a variety of offices dedicated to support students’ academic success, interconnected through the Learning Alliance network. These services include everything from career counseling to tutoring, disability and autism resources, and writing and English language support.
New Dragons should be encouraged to utilize these resources by professors and academic advisors, but parents may and should do so as well, especially if their student expresses academic concerns! They should also do this as early as possible in order to tackle problems head-on, especially in light of the quick 10-week terms.
- What is FERPA?
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protects the privacy of student education records for students who are at least 18 years old or who attend or have attended a postsecondary institution, even if they have not reached the age of 18.
Under this act, parents and other third parties have no inherent rights to inspect a student’s educational record without the student’s written content or a court-ordered subpoena. The act also extends to non-academic records maintained by the University, such as those maintained by law enforcement of the University or those maintained by a physician, psychiatrist or psychologist.
If you’d like access to your student’s records, they can grant you FERPA authorization rights by completing a waiver form in DrexelOne. Be sure to speak with your student about this policy!
- Can my student study abroad while at Drexel?
Students from all majors are able to study abroad at Drexel, whether it’s through full-term programs or shorter, intensive courses. If your student can academically and financially fit it in their schedules, they can do it!
Students whose programs include co-op will study abroad while they are scheduled for class. There are also international co-op opportunities available through the Steinbright Career Development Center.
All Drexel-sponsored study abroad programs receive Drexel credit and students keep their financial aid. The Office of Global Engagement and Education Abroad also works with students to find a program in a the country or context to realize their dreams and goals.
Tell your student to attend an upcoming Study Abroad 101 session to learn more!
- What is the 2-Year Residency Program and can my student live in a Drexel residence hall after their first year?
Drexel’s 2-Year Residency Program was implemented in 2010 to provide a living environment that enhances a student's educational experience and contributes to their growth as a member of the University community and beyond. To ensure this, the University requires all full-time undergraduate students whose permanent address is outside of a 10-mile radius of the University City Campus to live on campus during their first two years as a student.
Your Dragon will live in a Drexel Residence Hall for their first year, and can live in a Residence Hall, a fraternity/sorority house (with invitation from the organization) or in University Affiliated Housing for their second year. Talk with your student early about what they’d like their living arrangement to be for next year!
- How can my student get involved on campus? When is the Involvement Fair?
Campus Engagement oversees the many aspects of connecting students to campus by engaging them in co-curricular activities, including leadership programs, campus program planning, off-campus communities, community service, student organizations and the fraternity and sorority experience.
Encourage your student to find out more about these activities at the forthcoming Involvement Fair on Oct. 2.
- What happens if my student is sick?
The Drexel Student Health Center (DSHC) provides students with a wide range of medical services, from injury and illness treatments to women's health and physical exams. Located at 3401 Market St. and open various hours Monday through Friday, the DSHC is focused on keeping your student healthy so that they may can develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Appointments may be scheduled by calling 215.220.4700. For students that have questions or concerns outside of the normal business hours, DSHC provides a 24-hour service line at the same number, but students who need immediate medical attention or services outside of regular business hours should call 911 to be taken to an emergency room or visit an urgent care facility. Find more information about after-hours care here.
- If the University is closed for weather, how can we find out?
Snow day!!! For any weather-related delayed openings or closures, information will be posted on the University’s homepage, and Drexel community members will also be notified via text message through the emergency alert system.
- What measures can my student take to stay safe on campus?
The two key safety actions your student should take when arriving on campus is to make sure their contact information is up-to-date on DrexelOne so that they may receive DrexelALERTs sent through the Department of Public Safety. These alerts are sent via text message, phone and email to numerous devices and provide fast dissemination of critical information to students, faculty and staff, as well as add an additional layer of security and protection for emergency response.
They should also download the Drexel Guardian app, which allows the Drexel Public Safety Communications Center to immediately access important information about the user, such as name, photograph, important medical information and location when contact is initiated through the app — dramatically increasing the odds that Public Safety can find and help the user during an emergency. The service is free and voluntary, so make sure your Dragon takes this important safety measure!
- Is there Greek life on campus?
There sure is! In fact, fraternities and sororities were introduced on Drexel’s campus way back in 1900, and are currently overseen by the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life which strives to honor and uphold these long-standing traditions. There are more than 30 recognized Greek organizations at Drexel, as well as a number of annual events, including Welcome Week’s Night on the Row. Find out more about Drexel’s Greek life here.
- Are there resources if my student needs to find a place of worship?
You bet! The University encourages all students to take advantage of the spectrum of resources available both on and off campus to support their spiritual development and identity. The Office of Spiritual and Religious Life, the Student Center for Diversity and Inclusion, and the Office of Campus Engagement collaborate with students and campus or community chaplains to create opportunities for worship in the variety of faith traditions on campus.
Currently, the majority of spiritual and religious institutional support is provided by Baptist Campus Ministry, Hillel at Drexel, Newman Catholic Campus Ministry and Open Door Christian Community. For more information, contact the Student Center for Diversity and Inclusion.
- Can my student get discounts on mass transit?
Whether for commuting or co-op, full-time students can take advantage of the SEPTA Compass program, which provides full-time students with a 10 percent discount on monthly transpasses and trailpasses through DrexelOne. All passes must be purchased two months in advance, by midnight on the fourth Monday of that month, and will be available for pick-up approximately one week prior to the issue date month at the information desk in the Creese Student Center.
Additionally, students can get a 25 percent discount on NJ Transit monthly passes.
- As a parent or family member, where can I find information and support?
We know this is a lot to take in! If you need more information or support, check out this University resource guide for parents with listings for everything from visiting campus to the history of the University to where to look for crisis help.
Additionally, Student Life has outlined parent and family resource around involvement and communications. Find that here.
- What and when is Family Weekend?
Family weekend is an annual event where parents and family members of all ages are invited to campus to reconnect with their Dragons! Programming will allow families to know Drexel and one another as they share in the fun during this engaging weekend of workshops, educational activities and more.
This year’s Family Weekend will take place Oct. 18–20, and will be held Nov. 6–9 in 2020!
- How can I sign up for the DrexelNow?
Wow! Great question! You might have found this article through our monthly parents and families newsletter, in which case you are already signed up. If you’d like to start receiving this newsletter in your inbox around the 15th of each month, sign up for the parent/family member edition here. You can also sign up for additional editions of our newsletters if you see fit!
- How can I partake in giving and philanthropy at Drexel?
While you guide your child's journey over the next four or five years, you can help Drexel offer indispensable resources and opportunities to all of our students by giving back with a gift to the Parents Fund. Parent-giving options allow you to directly impact your own child's Drexel experience or represent your family's priorities.
See the areas where your gift can make an impact right now, including The Parents Fund (unrestricted), schools and colleges, athletics, student aid and more.
You can also attend the next DFA to find out about ways to get involved! It will take place on the University City campus on Oct. 7. Requests for more details and RSVPs can be sent to email@example.com.