Dear Students,

COVID-19 continues to present significant challenges to the health and safety of our campus community. Although the challenges presented by COVID-19 have made this fall different from previous ones, the university remains committed to providing a distinguished Michigan education to you, our students.

Guided by public health experts, we are writing today to share that UM-Dearborn will continue with our hybrid approach through the winter 2021 semester, continuing our focus on keeping campus density low and academic excellence high. The U-M Regents today have approved a shift in our academic calendar to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19 to the broader community. These plans reflect our continued commitment to promoting public health, outstanding teaching and an excellent learning environment. We are hopeful that the early announcement of these plans will allow you to plan accordingly, and maximize the opportunities for student success by minimizing disruption of our winter scheduling and registration processes.

The primary components of our winter 2021 semester plan are described below. As we move through the fall additional details will be shared. Remember you can always find all of the current information on our Go Safe - Go Blue - Go Dearborn website. All teaching, learning and return-to-work plans are being developed with contingency scenarios should the campus need to pivot due to COVID-19developments.

Continuing the Hybrid Model
UM-Dearborn’s winter 2021 semester will continue the hybrid approach blend of remote and in-person teaching. Like the fall, classes will only be taught remotely if an excellent quality education can be delivered in that format. Some classes will require scheduled times for students to gather, either virtually or in-person on-campus. Others, such as labs, senior design and similar courses that require a high-level of student interaction or special equipment, will meet in-person on campus employing all appropriate and relevant public health precautions. We expect less than 12 percent of classes will be delivered in person. Diversity, equity and inclusion will remain an important component of course design.

Winter 2021 Academic Calendar
The winter academic calendar will shift to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 amongst the campus and broader community. Especially during a time that seasonal factors threaten to accelerate the disease’s progression, rather than slow it.

  • The semester will start on Wednesday, January 13 (adjusted from Wednesday, January 6) and spring break has been eliminated.
  • All courses will be taught online from Wednesday, January 13 through Friday, February 26.
  • Starting Monday, March 1 --- if the COVID-19 pandemic conditions permit --- classes scheduled for an in-person modality will be taught on campus.
  • Classes end on Tuesday, April 20.
  • Final exams will be held Thursday, April 22 - Wednesday, April 28. Faculty teaching on campus classes will have the option to conduct on campus final exams. All other final exams will be conducted remotely.
  • A decision regarding the spring 2021 commencement will be announced in January 2021.

Health protocols
We expect that all of the health and safety measures currently in place to keep the campus community safe will continue throughout the winter 2021 semester.

Campus experience
The university is committed to providing our students with a vibrant student experience and Campus Life activities will continue with a remote-first approach. All student services will be available, with most interactions, programs and engagement handled virtually. As we approach the start of the winter semester we will share additional information regarding any planned changes to operations at the Mardigian Library, University Center, including food service, the Bookstore and Credit Union and with university events.

Additional information will be shared separately regarding winter 2021 NAIA athletic competitions;athletic training, practice, and competitions, as well as the Wellness Center.

Our community has shown remarkable resilience throughout this global health crisis. As winter semester2021 approaches, we know that additional questions will arise as we apply lessons learned from this fall.UM-Dearborn leadership remains committed to transparency, collaboration and communication.

Guided by the advice of public health professionals, UM-Dearborn will continue to hold paramount the well-being of our students, faculty and staff while not compromising the quality of our education. We will also prioritize our obligation to the broader community by doing all that we can to limit the spread of COVID-19 in southeast Michigan.

Go Safe - Go Blue - Go Dearborn!

Domenico Grasso

Sue Alcock

Back to top of page