Academic calendar revised for Fall 2020


File Photo/The Lion's Roar

Academic calendar for the Fall 2020 semester has been revised to end the semester before December. The upcoming semester will start on Monday, August 17, and students will not return back to campus after Thanksgiving Break which is scheduled for Nov. 25-27. Finals will be held remotely.

After experiencing a shortened spring semester due to the pandemic, universities are preparing for a possible second wave of the virus around November 2020.

Dean of Students Dr. Gabe Willis announced the university’s newly revised academic calendar on June 28, revealing all the changes that were made in order to end the semester before December. 

According to the calendar, the first day of the fall semester will begin on Monday, Aug. 17, and end on Tuesday, Nov. 24. The university will close as usual for Thanksgiving break, which is scheduled for Nov. 25-27, but students will not return to campus for final examinations. All regular and Term II final exams will be taken remotely starting Monday, Nov. 30 through Friday, Dec. 4.

Term I classes for Fall 2020 will end on Friday, October 2. Term II classes will begin on Monday, Oct. 12 and end on Tuesday, Nov. 24. Regular and Term I classes for the spring semester will begin on Wednesday, Jan. 20.

The university will not have the usual Labor Day break or fall break. For the spring semester, Mardi Gras break is scheduled for Feb. 15-17, and Spring break is for April 2-9.

All academic checkpoints have been moved by one to two days earlier.

Professors are adjusting to the modifications within the new schedule and will be returning back to campus on Aug. 11 while also trying to enforce and adhere to all the new guidelines within the “Safe Campus Guide” that the Environmental Health and Safety Office created for the university. 

Some students do not agree with how quickly the new calendar has mapped out the entire fall semester due to the shortage of breaks.

Tyra Banks, a senior psychology major, explained that she has no problem with the schedule but is concerned the lack of breaks will impact her academic performance.

“I would definitely say the only problem I am having with it is the breaks because you need that time to recuperate before you go back in because usually, we have a break before midterms and a break before finals, but now we don’t get those breaks because the semester is ending early,” said Banks.

Catyra Duhon, a sophomore marketing major, believes that students should be allowed to choose their preference for taking classes.

“I think every student should have the option of online or face-to-face classes,” said Duhon.

The academic calendar has been posted on the university website and will continue to be a map for the 2020-2021 school year. The university also plans to monitor the spread of the pandemic and stay prepared in the event that more changes need to be made.

Editor’s note: Edited for clarity 7/8/2020