Thursday, Jun 4, 2020
A letter to incoming freshmen and rising sophomores
I’m writing to inform you that Rider University is temporarily suspending its two-year residency requirement for the full 2020-21 academic year.
Rider normally requires all freshmen and sophomores to live on campus because of its demonstrated value in contributing toward student persistence and timely graduation. Becoming an active and involved member of the campus community has proven instrumental in allowing students to take full advantage of the Rider experience and the University's signature Engaged Learning program.
While these and other benefits remain, we are committed to providing our students with as much flexibility as possible in the context of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic so that they and their families can make the best decisions for themselves. Our priorities for the fall semester are to be prepared to provide the highest level of academic instruction and overall student experience while also protecting the health and safety of our campus community.
As a reminder, students who are living within 30 miles of campus with their parents or family members are exempt from the residency requirement, so this temporary suspension does not affect them.
Students may still choose to live on campus. To ensure the safety of all members of our community who live on or visit our campus, Rider University continues to follow state and federal guidelines and invest in precautionary measures, such as enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols.
If you choose not to live on campus but have already paid your housing deposit, that money will be applied to your fall 2020 semester bill. If you have already begun a housing application, you will need to cancel it online via the Housing Portal to receive this account credit. If you want to continue to live on campus and have already made your deposit, no action is needed on your part.
Should you have any questions about the temporary suspension of the residency requirement, or questions about living on campus in general, please contact the Office of Residence Life at [email protected].
I hope you will find comfort in having greater flexibility as you look ahead to the fall semester. The coronavirus has not tempered our excitement for the academic year, and we look forward with great anticipation to providing our students with the transformative experience that all Rider students expect and deserve.
We do so in the knowledge that the fall semester is likely to look different than normal. Although we have seen encouraging signs in efforts to contain the coronavirus’s effect on our communities, the pandemic remains unpredictable.
As we have previously communicated with you, right now a special task force of senior leaders and faculty is working urgently to help inform our comprehensive plan for the fall semester. All of us are dedicated to ensuring Rider will be prepared to respond dynamically to changing circumstances — not only in the coming months but once the semester begins — and be prepared to provide the highest level of academic instruction and overall student experience while also protecting the health and safety of our campus community.
We will continue to share more information as it becomes available. Until then, I wish you and your family good health and safety.
Dr. Leanna Fenneberg
Vice President for Student Affairs