Why is this year’s class larger than normal for UMass Amherst?
In recent years, we have seen an increase in the number of Massachusetts high school graduates who consider UMass Amherst their first choice in the college selection process. UMass has planned for modest growth of the university in recent years, and this year’s first-year class is somewhat larger than expected. We are excited to see so many students and their families choosing UMass Amherst and we are making preparations to ensure your student will arrive prepared and experiences the excellence that defines UMass Amherst.
My student is trying to schedule his or her New Student Orientation session, but it is full. What are our options?
In addition to our traditional two-day orientation sessions, we are offering more options this year to help accommodate our incoming class. These include an accelerated one-day orientation session (on June 17 and 18) and online orientation. Both are excellent choices for students and their families who perhaps are pressed for time, live close by or cannot get enough time off to attend. No matter what orientation session your student chooses, they will arrive on campus adequately prepared in the fall. If you are concerned your student will miss out on meeting new friends during orientation, don’t worry. Our robust schedule during Fall Welcome (Aug. 30-Sept. 2) and throughout September provides many opportunities for our incoming students to connect to their UMass Amherst community. More information on these options can be found at https://www.umass.edu/newstudent/ or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 413-545-2621.
How will residential life be impacted by this larger than expected class?
Standard housing options for first-year students are single rooms (1 student) and standard shared rooms (2-3 students). For Fall 2019, the following additional housing options are available:
McNamara Suites: Suites housing 6-8 students in a combination of single and double rooms. Each suite shares a living room and a bathroom cleaned regularly by staff.
Economy Triple: Large double rooms redesigned to house three students. Economy Triples offer the most cost effective on-campus housing option.
Expanded Quad: Lounges redesigned to house four students. Expanded Quads offer significant savings on the cost of on-campus housing.
What’s included in the housing options?
All the above housing options include access to Residential First Year Experience programming. Each secure room includes a bed, desk, chair, dresser, and space for hanging clothes.
How does my student let you know if he or she is interested in the Expanded Quad, Economy Triple or McNamara Suite?
Your student will receive a packet listing these housing options. If your student is interested in an Expanded Quad, Economy Triple, or McNamara Suite, they should indicate this choice on their housing preference application.
What is the cost of the housing options?
Room and board rates are set by the board of trustees each year. We will post 2019-2020 rates online as they are finalized (late July). For your planning purposes, our 2018-19 housing rates per semester are:
Single Room: $4,655.50
Single Room, McNamara Suite: $4,245.50
Standard Shared Room: $3,534.00
Double Room, McNamara Suite: $3,225.50
Expanded Quad: $3,019.50
Economy Triple: $2,599.00
Will students have sufficient access to academic advising during peak times, like drop/add and registration?
Yes, plans are underway with the academic deans in the schools and colleges to ensure additional advising assistance is being provided especially during peak times in the university’s academic schedule. The university has also launched a new tool this past semester, Schedule Builder, that provides students the ability to create a number of course schedules from which to choose when their course enrollment appointment takes place. More information on Schedule Builder can be found on the Registrar’s website. Students are encouraged to meet with an academic advisor at any point during the semester, and not wait until course registration opens, to plan for their Spring semester courses.
Will students have access to classes, including first year seminars, pre-requisites for popular tracks and the General Education Diversity Requirement in year one?
Yes, the university has added over 40 first year seminars to accommodate the larger incoming first year class this Fall. We are also adding more course sections and enrollments in critical first year courses, including all of the General Education curriculum areas, and that also includes the Diversity courses. Diversity courses are a requirement during a student’s first year on campus. This will ensure sufficient capacity for all or our incoming first year students.