COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Campus Update: Thursday, May 28, 2020

Flatten the COVID-19 Curve with MaximusCARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund:
Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students Report

Read: Making Plans to Welcome Students Back to Campus for Fall Semester


Dear Students,

A final reminder that the campus is closed as of Friday, March 20 at 2:00 p.m., until further notice in response to COVID-19 threat. All classes at both the Buffalo and Rochester campuses will continue in a digital format for the remainder of this spring semester and for the May and July starts for post traditional students. There will be no classroom instruction during these sessions. 

Important phone numbers are below (again, these phones will be forwarded to the appropriate cell and home phones.)

  • Student Development: 880-2224

  • Academic Advisement Center 880-2227

  • Academic Support Center (ASC) 880-2214

  • Athletics: 880-2168

  • Residence Life: 880-2449

  • Wellness Center: 880-2339

  • Registrar’s Office: 880-2365 

  • Financial Aid: 880-2256 

  • Admissions: 880-2200

  • IT Help Desk: 880-2282

  • Student Accounts: 880-2235

If you do not know who to contact for any particular issue, please contact the student development office at 880-2224 for assistance. They will lend assistance and provide the necessary information.



Traditional Undergraduate Students

Post-Traditional & Graduate Students

Resident & International Students

Faculty Resources

Student Resources




FAQ Quick Menu:

Academic Support


Housing/Campus Life

Health Concerns

Financial Help





Academic Support

I chose Medaille for the small classes and one-on-one support, not online classes.

While we understand that COVID-19 has interrupted the delivery of some classes, Medaille has had online education for years.  This is the best option to teach students during this pandemic.  We are a leader in providing online learning and our faculty are prepared to transition to this mode of delivery.  The college will provide access to all necessary academic and online resources. 


I have questions about my internship and/or labs.  Who should I contact?

Students that have not heard from faculty with regards to labs and/or internships are encouraged to contact department chairs. 

Please see the below contact info:


Counseling and Clinical Psychology:

Dr. Lynn Horne-Moyer;; (716) 880-2555


Social Sciences (Criminal Justice; Homeland Security; Psychology):

Dr. Richard Jacob,; (716) 880-2131


Interdisciplinary Studies (English; General & Liberal Studies; International Studies):

Ms. Courtney Grim;; (716) 880-2279



Dr. Colleen Wilkinson;; (716) 880-2624


Business, Management & Leadership:

Ms. Susan Steffan;; (716) 880-2604


Communication & Sport Studies:

Ms. Lisa Marsherall;; (716) 880-2233


Science, Math & Technology:

Dr. Vochita Mihai;; (716) 880-2291


Veterinary Technology:

Dr. Joe Savarese, jsavarese; (716) 880-2306



What is the best format to connect with faculty?

You should check your syllabus for your instructor’s contact information and check Blackboard for any updated information from your classes.  If your instructor is not returning your messages, please contact the department chairs which are listed in another question.


How will I get registered for classes for next term?

The Advisement Center and faculty will be working together to make sure all students are registered for classes based on their academic plan.  Please check your email regularly for confirmations and communication from faculty and/or advisors.


Is the Academic Support Center (ASC) accessible to students during the remainder of this semester?

Although the physical ASC space is closed to student traffic, the ASC will offer services remotely.  Services can be provided through email, telephone, or video conferencing.  You can reach the ASC by calling 716-880-2214 or emailing  Please click HERE to schedule an appointment with ASC staff.


Is Academic Support Center tutoring still available?

Yes, we still have tutoring available during this time! You can access SMARTHINKING Online through Medaille 360 (online tutoring).  Video tutorials for SMARTHINKING can be accessed HERE.  Please click HERE to schedule a tutoring appointment to work with a tutor online via Blackboard (Bb) Collaborate.  After you schedule an appointment, you will receive a link to meet your tutor on Blackboard (Bb) Collaborate for your sessions. 


***Drop in hours for the Online Vet Tech Program is available in Blackboard by enrolling in the “Vet Tech Online Tutoring” Community.  Individual appointments for the on ground Vet Tech Program can be scheduled HERE.




When is the Pass/Fail deadline?

All students* (undergraduate and graduate; on ground and online) will have the option to choose the pass/fail grade option through 5:00 pm on Friday, May 15, 2020.  Grades are due by noon on May 12, so students will have three days to see their letter grade, talk to their advisor and financial aid to make sure this option is appropriate for the individual student.  Confirmation of speaking with the advisor and financial aid is required before any pass/fail request is processed.

If a class requires a grade for licensure or certification purposes for the academic program the pass/fail option will not be permitted. 

If a class requires a minimum grade (i.e. C- or better) in order to fulfill a prerequisite of another class, choosing “Pass” will not remove this condition.

The Registrar’s Office will maintain a record of the original grade submitted by the faculty and will provide the advisor/department, upon request, the original grade entered by the faculty to determine if the student achieved the minimum grade requirement to move forward.


When is the Course Withdrawal deadline?

All students* (undergraduate and graduate; on ground and online) will have the option to withdraw from a course (and receive a grade of “W”) up to 5:00 pm on Friday, May 15, 2020. Grades are due by noon on May 12, so students will have three days to see their letter grade, talk to their advisor and financial aid to make sure this option is appropriate for the individual student.  Confirmation of speaking with the advisor and financial aid is required before any course withdrawal request is processed. This temporary policy does not apply to any Session III course.


What if I am repeating a course in the Spring 2020 semester?

Any course taken during the Spring 2020 semester that is a repeat of a previously taken Medaille course will have the highest earned grade used in the calculation of the GPA. All grades earned will remain a part of the student’s permanent record.


When is the Incomplete Grade deadline?

The final grade for any outstanding Incomplete grades for courses including and up to the Spring 2020 Session III courses are extended to December 14, 2020.  The extended pass/fail grade and withdrawal options DO NOT extend out to the December 14, 2020 final grade due date.  Therefore, courses receiving an Incomplete grade for the Spring 2020 are only eligible for a letter grade.


What is going to happen to my Academic Standing this semester? I didn’t do very well in my classes.

The policy for the Spring 2020 semester is that student’s grades for the 2020 Spring Semester can only be used to improve the student’s academic standing.  No student’s academic standing shall move to a more dire category when factoring in his or her grades from the 2020 Spring Semester.


What does pass/fail mean? What does it mean to only do pass fail for an individual course?

  1. Students may decide to change a grade to pass or fail after seeing their grades at the end of the semester. They may do this by individual course; for example, two courses may be recorded on a pass/fail scale and two for letter grades. The exception to this policy is that students may not choose the pass/fail option for courses that require grades due to external licensure requirements where they must have recorded grades for particular classes. Your program director or department chair will know what those exceptions are.

  2. The date to withdraw from a course has also been extended to the same date so that students can decide to withdraw from a course after seeing your final grade (that is, you can withdraw instead of failing). 


How does taking a “P” or “Pass” affect your GPA?

Taking a “P” will not affect your GPA—it will not raise or lower it. A “P” grade will come in place of any grade that is a D- or above.


Was the Session IV drop/add deadline extended?

The Session IV drop/add deadline has not changed.


Has my academic calendar changed?

Neither the Undergraduate nor the Post-traditional academic calendars have changed.


How will I get registered for classes for next term?

The Advisement Center and faculty will be working together to make sure all students are registered for classes based on their academic plan.  Please check your email regularly for confirmations and communication from faculty and/or advisors.



Housing/Campus Life


How will housing selection work for next year?

Housing selection has occurred.  If you missed your scheduled housing selection zoom, please contact Residence Life at (716) 880-2449.


Is it true that current resident students do not need to pay a housing deposit for Fall 2020?

Students that resided in the halls Spring 2020 do not need to submit a housing deposit to participate in selection.  We understand the COVID-19 has caused hardships for students.  We will roll your deposit from this past year to hold your spot.  Those that have paid will have this past year’s deposit released to their account once we confirm all belongings have been removed from your currently assigned room.


What is going on with room and board charges for Spring 2020?

The College made a decision in the best interest of students and the larger community to close campus.  We are concerned about the hardship this has placed on students and families and have completed the relief distribution for our resident students.  All relief was distributed to resident students the week of May 11, 2020.  If you have questions regarding this, please contact Student Accounts.


All my stuff is still in the residence halls, what is the plan?

Your items are safe.  As the County announced phase one opening this week (5/18/20), we anticipate in the near future being able to provide access for the removal of belongings left behind.  You are asked to contact Residence Life (716) 880-2449 to schedule an appointment in anticipation of future phase openings.


What is the status of athletic events?  

Currently all Medaille College athletic competitions and practices are suspended until further notice.


Are the gyms or fitness room on campus or at the Elk Sports Complex open? 

Currently both facilities are closed until further notice.


What is going to happen to celebratory events like MavFest?

All campus events are postponed until further notice.


What is the plan of action to support all students when the campus welcomes our students back, knowing that some may have been exposed to the virus?

Medaille will work with local authorities and ensure that the campus and community are safe before welcoming students back.  


Are Career Planning services such as assistance with my resume and cover letter writing, career issues, or job search still available?

Yes, along with several other career programs available at:  You can reach staff members for individual assistance through their email: Services can be provided through email, telephone or tele-conferencing. 



Health Concerns

What should I do if I think I am having symptoms of COVID-19? (cough, fever, difficulty breathing)

Take your temperature, and if it is above 100.4 degrees, stay home, limit contact with other household members, and call your health care provider, an urgent care center, or utilize telehealth. Contact the Emergency Department of your local hospital if your symptoms are severe.  For additional information, you can also call the Erie County Health Department COVID-19 line at 716-858-2929.


Where can I find more information on the COVID-19?

World Health Organization

Center for Disease Control

New York State Department of Health

NYS Local Health Department Directory

Erie County Department of Health   

Public Health Ontario Update


Since the Wellness Center is closed for in person appointments, can I still see a counselor for mental health support?

Yes, the Student Counseling Center staff are seeing students through an online platform for teletherapy services (similar to FaceTime or Skype).  Click here for more information on how to link to services:



Financial Help

How is Medaille utilizing the CARES Act funding?

As many of you have heard, colleges across the country are receiving grants through the Federal CARES Act in order to provide emergency financial aid to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus.  We are examining the guidance recently released from the federal government and developing a process to determine the amounts as well as the method of distribution to individual students.  We remain committed to providing relief to our students that are eligible based on the government guidance.  Through lobbying efforts, the government has agreed that CARES Act funding will not be taxable.


I am a commuter and placed declining dining dollars on my student ID for Chartwells/ Freshens.  What will happen to this?

All commuter declining balance dollars will be rolled over to the Fall 2020 Semester.;


I placed MavBucks on my student ID.  What will happen to this?

All commuter and resident MavBucks will be rolled over to the Fall 2020 Semester.


Should I continue to fulfill my payment plan arrangements?

Yes, the College continues to educate students through online learning. All payments through the payment plan should continue as scheduled.


What is the plan for work study?

Since work study is part of the financial aid award, all work study students will continue to get paid their regularly scheduled wages pending any further action by the Department of Education. Students still will be required to submit their timesheets into Medaille 360 for supervisor approval. 




What is the latest version of Blackboard Learn?

On Saturday, May 16, 2020, we’re updating Blackboard Learn to incorporate the new Ultra Base Navigation. This new navigation has a sleek, modern look and feel and will save you time with simpler workflows and easier access to important information.


What is the Ultra Base Navigation?

It is a modern, intuitive navigation menu that lives outside of courses. It includes links to new pages such as the Activity Stream, Calendar, Messages, etc. that provide quick access to the most critical information consolidated from all your courses.


What does this mean for me?

  • Your courses will not change. They will look and operate exactly as they do now.

  • Starting May 16, 2020, you will see the new navigation as soon as you log into Learn.

  • So, just sit back and take advantage of some of the benefits below!

  • Virtual tour:


How will this enhance your efficiency and experience?

  • Modern, intuitive user experience. You and your Instructors are going to enjoy this simple, intuitive, engaging user experience.

  • Works well on mobile devices. This navigation is designed to work well regardless of which device you’re using. 

  • Aggregates important information. All your course and organization information – like calendar, messages and grades – is now consolidated into one global view, minimizing the time spent navigating into each individual course.

  • Only one click away. See something that needs your attention? Just click on it and you will be taken directly there, minimizing clicks and saving time.  


Where can I find more information?

The Ultra Base Navigation brochure is in your email for your review. To learn more, here are a few useful Blackboard websites:


What if I don’t have access to appropriate technology to accomplish assignments?

Contact your professors with concerns of completing assignments.  We encourage you to clearly state the nature of your situation and make a plan with them for completing your semester.


What if I am having trouble accessing technology through Blackboard?

Call the IT Helpdesk at 716-880-2282 or email


What if I am doing my homework assignments on my phone? I don’t have access to a computer off-campus, and I am afraid my assignments will reflect this.

Faculty across the country are being encouraged to remember that what they typically would do in a traditional classroom can’t be done in an online format. Our faculty is continuously adapting in response to student needs in regard to length of assignments and making more manageable portions to assist students who are working from smartphones.




When are rented books due?

Rentals for the spring semester are due the same day as your grades: May 12.


Will the store be open for me to drop off my books? 

Unfortunately, due to the progress of the pandemic in New York State both the store and the Buffalo campus remain closed for the immediate future for the safety of faculty, staff and students.

How can I return my books? 

All students who rented a physical textbook should have received an email with instructions to check-in your book online and print out a pre-paid Fedex Ground label for shipping. Once the label is printed the books should be packaged and taken to a FedEx drop-off location.  Please save a copy of the tracking number in case something happens in shipping.


I need my book until the very last day of classes. Am I going to be charged a fee on May 13th

Due to the extraordinary circumstances of this pandemic we are extending our normal grace period between when books are due and when they are charged. We do need to get the books promptly in order to continue serving you and your fellow students so please make sure they are shipped as close to May 12 as possible. 


What if I'm not near a Fed-Ex location? 

FedEx has drop boxes located in many different areas outside their stores. You can find the one closest to you at  If you are not using a Fedex location, please make sure you are putting the package in a ground drop-box and not an express.


How do I print out a label if I don't have a printer? 

Students without a printer should download their label onto a mobile device and take it to a FedEx location (or other print shop that remains open) where they should be able to print it out for you. 


Can I send my books back using US Mail, UPS etc? 

Yes, but FedEx is the quickest way and if you are going to ship via another carrier you will be responsible for paying all shipping fees. We do not recommend using USPS Media Mail as it tends to be much slower.  


All book returns should be addressed:

Attn: Jon Carroll

Medaille College Bookstore

Sullivan Center

18 Agassiz Circle

Buffalo NY 14214

Please keep your tracking number as we will need it if something happens in shipping.


​What if I live in Canada? 

Please reach out to me via email at


What if I left my book in my dorm? 

Please reach out to me via email at


What happened to the voucher option on the website? 

We regret that we cannot currently process orders using financial aid vouchers through our website. Our payment options at the moment include credit card, debit card and PayPal.  Please check to see if the book you need is available through the free ebook program. 


Can I sell back a book I purchased? 

As of right now we are unable to buy books back from students. Please check back with us once the bookstore re-opens as we will almost certainly be looking for many titles.




Has a new date for commencement been confirmed?

The College has confirmed a rescheduled date with Kleinhans for the evening of Monday, November 30.  Please hold this date and share with your families!


Can I get my cap and gown shipped to my home address?

Under normal circumstances, gap and gowns once ordered are available for pick-up in the College Bookstore.  This will be the case when we re-open.  However should you wish, Herff-Jones just announced that they will be offering ship to home on caps and gowns that are already ordered through the following link


Can I still purchase a cap and gown if I didn't purchase one online? 

When the College reopens, we will have caps and gowns available in store for purchase.


I do not plan to attend the rescheduled commencement date of November 30th, can students get refunds for their graduation regalia?

Students may contact Herff-Jones at 1-800-837-4235.  They have assured us they have a system set-up for this.  Students may wish to wait to determine the College’s future plans prior to requesting a refund.


Will my graduation fee be refunded?

No.  The $50 fee is charged to all students graduating.  It covers costs of your physical diploma etc.  The cost of academic regalia is not included in this $50 fee.  Students can contact Herff-Jones at 1-800-837-4235 to request regalia refunds should you have already purchased such.  However, it may be in your best interest to wait until the College announces future plans to celebrate your accomplishments.   


Will December graduates be able to walk at the November 30 Commencement?

Only students who have applied for graduation and completed their degree requirements during the summer 2019, Fall 2019, and spring 2020 semesters are eligible to participate in Commencement. This will help us maintain our capacity—allowing each student eight guests—and it will help maintain attendance for the May 2021 ceremony.


Traditional Undergraduate Students

Effective Monday, March 23 all traditional undergraduate classes will move to online teaching/learning. Look for additional communication from academic departments and your faculty for other details. Spectrum has offered free internet in response to the pandemic.

The Wellness Center (for medical issues) is closed effective immediately. Students should utilize their regular physician network.

Counseling Center will be able to work with students, but remotely only.

We will NOT be holding commencement ceremonies in May. We will communicate new plans as soon as they are determined.


Post-Traditional & Graduate Students

All post-traditional classes are online effective Monday, March 16. 

We will NOT be holding commencement ceremonies in May. We will communicate new plans as soon as they are determined.


Resident & International Students

For those who are able, we encourage you to remove everything from your rooms by end of Wednesday, March 18. We do not see a scenario where returning to business as usual will occur before the last day of classes.  We are continuing to monitor the situation with the guidance of local authorities and have been informed that in order to stop the spread of the virus, it is imperative that individuals avoid close contact with each other and prepare to stay home wherever possible.

All student access to the College will be prohibited after 2 p.m. on Friday, March 20, 2020.

The residence halls will remain closed and all students currently in the halls are asked to make arrangements to vacate no later than Friday, March 20, 2020 by 2 p.m.  Students currently not in the halls are asked to return this week during normal business hours (8 a.m. - 4 p.m.) and remove essential items no later than Friday, March 20, 2020 by 2 p.m. 

International students who cannot return home because of the extenuating circumstances are asked to contact me no later than Wednesday, March 18, 2020 at 4 p.m. The College is in the process of soliciting faculty and staff host families or alternate arrangements so we can ensure you have appropriate housing accommodations and are taken care of.


Faculty Resources

E-Learning Bb Training Schedule for April-June 2020

Faculty Resources for Moving Classes to Online Format

Faculty Blackboard (Bb) Mentor Help Program

Free Electronic Textbook Information

The Chronicle of Higher Education: Coping with Coronavirus


Student Resources

Moving to Online Courses: a Bb Help Guide

Participant/Student BbC Web-Conferencing Tool Video Instructions

Student Collaborative Bb Guide: Spring 2020




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