The RIT community looks forward to celebrating the Class of 2021 on May 14 and 15 and the Class of 2020 on May 16. In light of current New York state regulations, we will not allow guests to our indoor ceremonies. We fully understand how disappointing this news is for family and friends; however, all ceremonies will be live-streamed. Recordings will also be made available afterward for those who are unable to view the event live.
Graduates will be able to order their caps and gowns later this week through our vendor, Oak Hall. Graduates will receive an email with details when the site has been launched and information will also be available on the Class of 2021 website.
We received guidelines from NY State yesterday regarding requirements to host a large-scale event. Upon review, the specific ceremony schedules will be shared later this week. Please check the commencement websites (www.rit.edu/classof2021 or www.rit.edu/classof2020) for updated information.
Imagine RIT: Creativity and Innovation Festival will be held on Saturday, May 1, 2021. The festival, which has attracted nearly 300,000 visitors since it was first held in 2008, is the university’s premier event that showcases the breadth and depth of RIT. This year’s festival is being held virtually but that doesn’t mean it will be any less exciting. We are looking forward to hosting thousands of attendees of all ages who will experience close to 200 exhibits put on by more than 2,500 RIT students, faculty and staff. For the schedule and information about how to participate, visit the Imagine RIT website.
On April 15 from 6-7 p.m., students can virtually meet some furry pals while connecting with staff members from Student Affairs. Students can register on CampusGroups and see this week’s lineup on the Student Life social media accounts.
Money Mondays with RIT Financial Literacy
Money management is an essential skill for students to learn and practice for financial success beyond their college years. Throughout the month of April, the RIT Financial Literacy team has been hosting a series of webinars every Monday as part of Financial Literacy Month. Students can still join in the next two webinars:
Student Loan Acknowledgement: Know What You Owe (April 19 at 4 p.m.) Students will take a guided tour of the Federal Student Aid website. Students will learn about types of student loans, how to track their borrowing, identify their loan servicer(s), locate the interest rates and any accrued interest of each loan, as well as when they need to begin repayment and what their options are.
Compensation & Benefits Packages (April 26 at 4 p.m.) The highest salary may not always be the best offer. In this session, students will learn why they should consider not only salary (direct pay) but also the benefits (indirect pay).
Students can register for on CampusGroups.
RIT Ready Updates
Updated Information on COVID-19 Vaccines
New York residents 16 years of age or older are now eligible to schedule an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine. RIT students living in Rochester (on or off campus) are considered Monroe County residents. While RIT strongly encourages a COVID-19 vaccination, the university is not requiring immunization at this time.
Students wishing to schedule their vaccination should keep in mind the timing, especially considering the second dose of a two-dose vaccine series. If they register for a vaccine that requires a second dose, make sure they will be in town for a second dose. In addition, the second dose may produce a stronger reaction/side effect—if any—than the first shot. Remind your student to keep this in mind when it comes to scheduling their vaccine around final exams and their date of campus departure.
Looking to the Fall Semester
President Munson has released a statement to the community announcing the plan to offer a majority of in-person classes in the fall. “We are committed to having nearly 80% of undergraduate courses offered either entirely in person or with a blended format. If CDC and New York state regulations regarding classroom occupancy are relaxed, we anticipate that the 80% will likely become fully in-person.” More information about course modality will be shared when available.
April Recharge Day
The April Recharge Day is scheduled for Thursday, April 22. This day off from classes is designed for students to take a break from classes and studying. If your student is looking to connect, there are in-person and virtual activities planned throughout the day. It’s also possible that your student is just looking forward to catching up on sleep or their favorite TV show. Either way, encourage your student to take advantage of this day to recharge and disconnect in whatever way feels best. Students will soon be able to sign up for Recharge Day activities.
Thanks to about 130 volunteer employees and the cooperation of about 10,000 students each week, Tiger Testing has been very successful this semester. Read this article to learn more about how RIT has managed weekly COVID testing.
Information and Updates
Final Exam Dates and Move Out
Final exams will be held on May 7, 10, 11, 12, and 13. Students can find their exam schedules in SIS or by checking their course syllabi. Students should plan on moving out of RIT housing within 24 hours of their last exam; RIT residence halls and apartments will close on Saturday, May 15, 2021, at 10 a.m.
Managing Finals Stress
Everyone experiences stress – it’s completely normal, especially during midterms and finals. Help your student think about how to manage their stress by sharing these strategies:
Eating a healthy diet to provide your body with the nutrients that help if function at optimal levels
Exercise to help your body release pent up energy, relieve tension, and release endorphins natural to your body
Get plenty of sleep to help restore the body and mind and help you be rested for the day to come
Make a list or journal to help organize your thoughts and make a plan on how to tackle the projects you have to do
Meal Plan Updates
Dining Dollars are a part of all RIT Dining meal plans. In the past, Dining Dollars rolled over from fall to spring semester and at the end of spring semester, any unused Dining Dollars were forfeited. Beginning this spring, Dining Dollars will now rollover from one academic year to the next until the student graduates or officially leaves the university. Visit the RIT Dining website for information on meal plans, dining locations, and hours. If you have specific questions regarding RIT Dining, including meal plans, please reach out to the RIT Service Center (RSC) at help.rit.edu or by calling 585-475-5000.
Red Barn Climbing is Back
The Red Barn is open with modified operations for the remainder of the spring semester. Students can make pre-paid reservations for Saturdays and Sundays from April 3 - May 9, 2021. Sessions are an hour and forty-five minutes and are available between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. Reservations can be made in advance for $4 per visit, with an optional $3 climbing shoe rental (climbing shoes are required to participate). Reservations can be made at recreation.rit.edu (credit card payment accepted).
Each month, we ask parents to respond to our Parent Poll and provide feedback on a topic related to RIT, your student, and you. In March, we asked if your student has joined a club or organization. Nearly half of you reported that your student has joined one or two clubs. Please take a moment to answer our April question.
In case you don’t follow the Parent and Family Programs Facebook page, here’s what you’ve missed: Students hammered in the rain last Friday building frames for soon-to-be homes of local Rochester families at the Spring Framing Frenzy 2021 hosted by Flower City Habitat for Humanity and the RIT Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement.