Smeal Update: June 26, 2020

Dear Smeal Student:

By now, I am sure you have read or heard about the University's announcement regarding the Back to State plan to resume campus-based residential instruction, work and other activities this fall in a limited fashion.

We have missed our Smeal students, and we are looking forward to welcoming you back to the Business Building. At the same time, we know that many aspects of the campus environment will be very different than we remember, and we are actively preparing for a new learning, teaching and working experience. 

In keeping with the University’s direction and the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s expectations for higher education, delivery of the curriculum will occur through a mix of in-person, remote and online instruction throughout the semester, with all classes of more than 250 students delivered online and/or remotely.

It is important to understand that some circumstances will require classes with fewer than 250 students to be delivered partially or entirely via remote and online instruction. Such circumstances include classroom capacity, which has been diminished to accommodate social distancing guidelines, and the health status and/or needs of our faculty members and those with whom they live. Our faculty are working closely with the University to determine the best option for students while meeting all course objectives.

In addition, faculty members will be flexible in their interpretation and management of in-person class attendance so that sick students stay home, and the University will work with immunocompromised and other at-risk students to develop appropriate adjustments.

Regardless of the mode of course delivery, which we hope to post to LionPATH soon, Penn State Smeal is focused on supporting your continued academic progress.

Keep an eye on Penn State’s Back to State Webpage as well as our evolving Coronavirus Webpage for additional information about Smeal’s preparations, including measures the University will take to protect the health and safety of those who come to our campuses.

Penn State and Smeal are large and complicated organizations. I am grateful for your patience, understanding and cooperation as we work together to adapt to the challenges and complexities that this global pandemic has presented.


Charles Whiteman, Dean