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Dear Members of the Drexel Community,

Thank you all for your hard work, patience and flexibility throughout this academic year. As we look to the spring, I am writing to share key updates about the quarter ahead.

Course Scheduling and Grading

  • Spring quarter will start and end as originally scheduled on the academic quarter calendar. Classes will begin on March 29, 2021 and end on June 5, with finals beginning on June 7.

  • Quarter-based undergraduate and graduate programs will continue with a mix of on-campus and remote instruction for the spring.  

  • While most classes will continue to be taught remotely, there will be an increased number of face-to-face and hybrid classes available in the spring quarter, as safety guidelines allow. Course offerings will differ by college and school, depending on the needs of each student population.

  • Optional Pass / No Pass grading will continue for quarter-based programs in the spring.  

The spring quarter course schedule will become available on Monday, February 15. Students will be notified via email when their Spring Registration and Schedule Ahead officially open. For more information about the registration process, including time tickets and an overview of available instructional modalities, please visit the Drexel Central website

We continue to schedule courses in a flexible manner to adapt to the fluid nature of the pandemic. In most cases, students who are unable to attend in-person courses will be able to fulfill their academic requirements via virtual instruction. Students who have questions about their spring quarter schedule should reach out to their academic adviser. Details and exceptions regarding optional Pass / No Pass grading can be found in the previous P/NP policy announcement

Research and Scholarly Activities

Drexel remains committed to carrying on our remote and on-campus research and scholarly activities in accordance with appropriate health and safety guidelines. For on-campus activities, we are currently in Phase 2 of the research ramp up, which limits density within a given research setting to 66% of normal density. We will maintain this percentage for the foreseeable future and will accommodate increased student participation through a variety of approaches, including non-overlapping work shifts. For more information, please visit the Research Ramp Up website

Accessing the Libraries and Informal Learning Environments

The Drexel Libraries will remain open virtually and on-campus. Students and employees can locate and reserve a seat online in the libraries or any number of informal study spaces located across Drexel's schools and colleges. These spaces provide safe learning and working environments, with access to reliable internet, information resources and staff assistance. Consult the Drexel Libraries website for current information about its facilities, resources and services.

International Students and Study Abroad

With very few exceptions, study abroad, non-credit international experiences and international co-op opportunities will remain suspended, except those of international students pursuing co-ops in their home countries. All requests for essential travel should be directed to the Essential Travel Review Committee at

The International Students and Scholars Services (ISSS) Office continues to closely monitor and assess the impact of the coronavirus on our international student and scholar communities. ISSS has created webpages for our international students and scholars to keep them informed of the current regulatory information. All current international students and scholars planning to travel outside the U.S. and those planning to travel to the U.S. to start their programs in spring should consult with ISSS at prior to making travel arrangements. 

Ensuring Health and Safety 

As more students, faculty and professional staff return to campus, rigorous health and safety protocols remain in place, including those set forth in the Dragon Pledge [PDF], to maximally reduce risk and support a safe learning and working environment. It's important to note that there have been no known transmissions of COVID-19 in a Drexel classroom, the Libraries or informal study spaces to date. For the most current data, please visit the COVID-19 Dashboard

Screening testing is an important step in reducing the risk to our campus community. All students registered for face-to-face courses are required to participate in weekly testing, and Drexel employees who return to campus in Phases I-IV have the opportunity to be tested every other week throughout the academic term. Signage is clearly visible throughout campus to remind all to maintain appropriate social distance, wash hands frequently and monitor their health via the Drexel Health Checker app. As shared in President Fry's Feb. 8 message, double-masking is also now recommended by the University as an added precaution. 

Winter can be a challenging time under normal circumstances, and it's certainly not made easier by a pandemic. However, it's been refreshing to see more activity on campus in recent days, as students, faculty and professional staff gradually return. I thank you all for your work and support and look forward to seeing the campus continue to come to life as we head into the longer, warmer days of spring. 


Paul E. Jensen
Executive Vice President
Nina Henderson Provost
University Professor