Large Incoming Class FAQ

For the academic year beginning Fall 2019, UMas Amherst is expecting a larger than average incoming class. As UMass continues to climb in national rankings, the university has 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. Below, please find answers to some frequently asked questions related to our large incoming class.



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.

As of August 2, 2019, students can view their housing assignments through SPIRE. If you have an inquiry about your housing assignment, send an email to Residential Life at


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 a student let you know if they are interested in the Expanded Quad, Economy Tripple, 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 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. 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
  • CHCRC First-Year Single: $5,068.00
  • CHCRC First-Year Shared: $3,843.00
  • CHCRC First-Year Economy Triple: $2,908.00


How will you provide additional access to academic advising during peak times, like add/drop 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.


What plans are in place to provide students 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.


What adjustments have been made at the Learning Resource Center?

The Learning Resource Center will be providing additional tutoring/supplemental instruction as needed.


How is Disability Services working to accommodate the incoming class?

All eligible students are encouraged to register with Disability Services over the summer. The process is simple. Fill out a student intake form at and mail, fax or scan your documentation to the Disability Services office. Information on what documentation is needed is available at Once Disability Services has received and reviewed your intake form and documentation, you’ll receive an email (at your UMass email) address asking you to schedule an appointment with your designated Consumer Manager. 
This year, to accommodate the larger incoming class, Disability Services welcomes any local student registered with Disability Services to schedule an appointment in August with their Consumer Manager, prior to the start of the school year. This first meeting is a “get to know you”, where your accommodation forms to instructors or relevant offices will be sent out. Most students will schedule this meeting near the start of the semester, but if you are local and would like to beat the rush, feel free to call ahead and schedule your appointment prior to the start of the semester .

How is UMass Dining adjuting to serve incoming students?

Dining services extended operating hours and opened additional concepts to accommodate the larger first year students. 
  • The Berkshire Dining Commons opened a Grab and Go breakfast concept 7am to 11am, Monday to Friday.  
  • Hampshire and Franklin Dining commons will extend continuous operating hours to 10pm 
  • Worcester Dining Commons will extend late night Dining on Friday and Saturday to midnight
  • ·Expanded hours for the Baby Berk Food Trucks
   Hours Fall 2019
   Berkshire DC
   11am to midnight (grab and go 7am to 4pm) 
   Hampshire DC
   7am to 10pm 
   Worcester DC
   7am to midnight (7 days a week) 
   Franklin DC
   7am to 10pm