Welcome Back - Fall 2021

Our community is ready to return and reconnect. We look forward to seeing you!

This page contains resources for the students, staff, and faculty of the College of Education as we negotiate the process of returning to Furcolo, and the UMass Amherst campus, in Fall 2021. 

Last updated: August 9, 2021

Planning our return to campus

The college and university are currently working out the process of returning staff, faculty, and students to campus for an in-person semester in Fall 2021. We will be sending regular updates via email to faculty, staff, and students (so remember to check your UMass email) and will update this page as we make progress toward our return. 

For the latest updates from the campus see: https://www.umass.edu/coronavirus/  

Access to Furcolo Hall

Furcolo Hall is now open. If you are in Furcolo or on campus, be sure to follow the current university guidelines for wearing masks and getting tested. These guidelines will change over the summer, so be sure to check the University’s Fall 2021 page for updates. 

Key Dates for Fall 2021

Fall 2021 UMass Amherst Academic Calendar

  • Monday, August 30 - Thursday, September 2: Welcome Week events
  • Wednesday, September 1 – first day of classes
  • Wednesday, September 8 – last day of add/drop period for Undergraduates
  • Wednesday, September 15 – last day of add/drop period for Graduate Students
  • Wednesday, December 8 – last day of class


Information for Students

Are students required to be vaccinated before returning to campus?

Yes, all undergraduate and graduate students who wish to live or learn or conduct research on campus or access campus resources must be fully vaccinated prior to the beginning of the fall semester, on the basis of expected additional state, federal and legal guidance and vaccine availability, and subject to religious and disability accommodations pursuant to state and federal law. Evidence to date concerning the present and expected approval status and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines supports the university’s position.

    As a student, how do I notify UMass that I am vaccinated?

    If you received your COVID-19 vaccine in Massachusetts, University Health Services has your vaccination data on file, and no further action is required.

    If you were vaccinated outside of Massachusetts, follow these below to upload your COVID-19 vaccination data as soon as you receive the first dose, then again after you receive the second dose. Do not wait to complete the series of shots to enter your COVID-19 vaccine information. (New Students: Please wait until you are assigned a UMass email address to follow the steps below.

    1.    Login to the UMass Patient Portal

    2.    Click the "immunization" tab

    3.    Select "COVID-19 Vaccines"

    4.    Find your vaccine type, enter the date you received your vaccine and click "Submit"

    5.    Click the "Uploads" tab

    6.    Under "Documents Available to be Uploaded," select A – REQUIRED IMMUNIZATIONS FORM

    7.    Upload a photo of the vaccine card that you were given by the health care provider who administered the immunization.

    As an international student, can I get vaccinated when I get to UMass?

    Yes. Assuming the continued availability of vaccines, international students who are unable to access the COVID-19 vaccine prior to arrival in the U.S. should be able to be vaccinated at UMass when they arrive in Massachusetts.  Students are required to participate in the campus asymptomatic testing program until they are considered fully vaccinated.

    As a student, can I request an exemption to the vaccine requirement?

    Students attending UMass may request an exemption from the vaccination requirement, subject to religious and disability accommodations pursuant to state and federal law.

    Medical Exemptions: Students who have a medical contraindication to COVID-19 vaccines that does not allow for full vaccination may request a medical exemption and waiver from the New Student Immunization Program (NSIP) office by calling 413-577-5275 or writing to nsip@uhs.umass.edu. The request for medical exemption should be completed by a licensed medical provider (MD, DO, NP, PA) who is not a family member, and returned to the NSIP office by July 15, 2021. In signing the waiver, the student attests that they understand the need for ongoing COVID-19 testing for all students who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, and may need to adjust their living and academic activities if there is a campus outbreak of COVID-19 during the 2021-22 academic year.

    Religious Exemptions: Students whose sincerely held religious beliefs conflict with COVID-19 vaccination may request a religious exemption and waiver from the New Student Immunization Program (NSIP) office by calling 413-577-5275 or writing to nsip@uhs.umass.edu. Religious exemption requests should be returned to the NSIP office by July 15, 2021 and are subject to the following conditions:

    • Religious Exemption is allowed if a student submits a written, signed, and dated statement that COVID-19 vaccination conflicts with their sincerely held religious beliefs.
    • If a student is under age 18, their parent/guardian must ALSO submit a written, signed, and dated that COVID-19 vaccination conflicts with their sincerely held religious beliefs.
    • For both religious and medical exemptions:
    • In the event of an identified elevated public health risk, emergency, or outbreak, exempt individuals may be isolated and/or excluded from campus, including but not limited to all classes, activities, travel, and on-campus housing.
    • Twice weekly required testing will be substituted for vaccination in students receiving religious or medical exemption.

    Student Support Resources

    Support Offices

    Center for Counseling and Psychological Health

    Offers a community of care to UMass Amherst students to help cope with stress or anxiety, find strategies to overcome challenges, promote mental wellbeing, and succeed in college life and beyond. Click here for more information: https://www.umass.edu/counseling/


    Food Insecurity

    To learn more about the programs available to students to help fight food insecurity, please click here: https://www.umass.edu/studentlife/single-stop/food


    College of Education Emergency Fund

    College of Education Emergency Fund Provides immediate financial assistance for College of Education students who have encountered an unexpected financial emergency situation that may impact their ability to focus on their studies. Funds are awarded typically in a range from $100 - $1,000 depending on the need and availability of funds. Please email your completed application to EDUC-emergencyfund@umass.edu. Additional information and application.


    Microgrant Program

    Provides small microgrants of up to $500 to matriculated undergraduate and graduate students for unexpected financial emergencies. Common reasons students apply for the grant might include: a car repair, unexpected medical bill, food, or rent assistance.  Submit your microgrant application to the Dean of Students Office here: https://www.umass.edu/dean_students/microgrant-short-term-loan


    Student Parent Program

    This program helps navigate UMass, get connected to resources, apply for a childcare subsidy, meet other students with families, find kid-friendly educational and cultural activities to do in the community. 


    Center for Women and Community

    Provides innovative and informed education, leadership opportunities, advocacy and support services that address the cause and impact of sexism and recognize the multiple oppressions experienced by women. For more information: https://www.umass.edu/cwc/


    Stonewall Center

    Provides support, resources, programming and advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex, asexual (LGBTQIA) and allied students, staff and faculty at Umass Amherst. For more information: https://www.umass.edu/stonewall/about-us/mission-and-vision 


    Religious Life

    Offers a range of educational programs, individual and institutional advocacy, as well as interfaith dialogue.


    Academic Support


    Writing Center

    Seeks to create a culture of writing across campus where all faculty, students, and staff respect past writing knowledge and extend it to new situations.


    Library Resources

    Library Resources available to UMass students are located here: https://www.library.umass.edu/


    Disability Services

    Promotes the empowerment of people with disabilities and their full integration into campus life and the community. Direct services are provided for all types of disability: https://www.umass.edu/disability/students

    Campus Life 

    UMass Transit


    UMass Dining




    If you have questions 

    Contact for Graduate Students:

    Shane Hammond, Graduate Program Director, SHammond@UMass.edu

    Contact for Undergraduate Students: 

    Zeke Kimball, Associate Dean Academic Affairs, Education@UMass.edu

    Contact for Faculty & Staff:

    Susan Martin, Executive Assistant to the Dean, Dean@educ.UMass.edu

    Contact for EdTech IT Support:

    Julie Pallant, IT Lead, EdTech-ITHelp@UMass.edu

    For a full list of College of Education offices and their Virtual Office Hours, please see the Directory of Offices. For a full list of faculty and staff, please visit People A-Z.

    So that you can receive important information and updates, make sure that you have signed up for the UMass Alerts System, that your contact information in SPIRE is up to date, and that you are regularly checking the inbox for your UMass email address. 

    Additional Resources 

    University of Massachusetts

    State of Massachusetts

    National & International