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PSC COVID-19 Updates

 

All classes will be offered online during the Summer 2020 semester

Classes for the fall 2020 semester will be online.

We're Here for You

Below is a list of topics for which students or others may have concerns or questions. Listed beside each topic is an email address that can be used to communicate with college personnel. Included herein is information for Non-Credit and Continuing Education operations as well.

Topic Email
Add / Drop Courses enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Adult Education and Literacy Students (ESL and HSE) adulted@prairiestate.edu
Advising advising@prairiestate.edu
Application and Enrollment Questions enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Business and Industry continuingeducation@prairiestate.edu
Classroom Accommodations equity@prairiestate.edu
Conference Center conferencecenter@prairiestate.edu
Degree Conferrals enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Disability Services equity@prairiestate.edu
Final Grades enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Financial Aid Disbursements / Questions financial-aid@prairiestate.edu
General Concerns or Questions vpsa@prairiestate.edu
Mandatory Reporting vpsa@prairiestate.edu
Non-Credit Student Concerns psceducation@prairiestate.edu
Placement Testing studentdevelopment@prairiestate.edu
Student Workers (e.g., timesheets, schedules, etc.) financial-aid@prairiestate.edu
Payments, Payment Plans (existing, new) businessoffice@prairiestate.edu
Account login information, Email, Password resets helpdesk@prairiestate.edu

 

Personal Counseling

Counselors are using Google Hangouts for phone counseling sessions to address students' emotional, psychological and social well-being. For assistance, please contact Personal Counselor, Shannon Word, NCC, LCPC at sword@prairiestate.edu or at 708-709-3511.

Transfer Counseling

Transfer counseling services are available online for students via email or Google Hangouts. Please contact Sarah Hein, Counselor and Transfer Coordinator, at shein@prairiestate.edu, to schedule an appointment for a virtual counseling session or with questions about transferring to continue on at a university.

Student Communications

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced today that he will extend the stay at home order for the state, with limited modifications, through Saturday, May 30. Prairie State College will continue virtual operations through this date. Only employees who have previously been identified as “essential” will be permitted in any college building, and are required to wear a face covering during the duration of their time on campus.

The health and safety of the PSC community is our first priority. Please continue to follow the governor’s stay-at-home orders to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. For more information about PSC’s response to COVID-19, visit prairiestate.edu/covid19.aspx.

Thomas D. Saban, Ph.D.
Interim President

This short (5-10 minutes) survey is designed to give Prairie State College (PSC) students a voice – a place where you can share your experiences, both positive and negative, and your concerns and opinions about the college’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We also want to know about your experiences with various methods of online instruction since converting to a virtual campus.

This survey was created in collaboration with the Higher Education Data Sharing (HEDS) Consortium. While participation is voluntary, we hope you will complete the survey, as this will help guide us on how better to support our students, as we move forward.

Be on the lookout for an email from “Vice President of Student Affairs Prairie_State_College@hedsconsortium.org” sent to your PSC student email account. Follow the instructions to complete the survey. You also can access the survey at https://heds.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3PmjNv0YkQYkC6V. Your responses are anonymous, which means no personal information, including your name, will be linked to your submission.

If you have questions about this survey, please contact Jan Bonavia, Director of Institutional Effectiveness, Planning and Accreditation at jbonavia@prairiestate.edu or Nicole Seidler, Research Analyst and Data Manager at the Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium at nicole.seidler@hedsconsortium.org.

Given the uncertainty and likelihood that social distancing restrictions will continue in the months ahead, the annual commencement ceremony, initially scheduled for May 16, 2020, has been moved to a virtual ceremony set to take place in early August. No official decision has been made on the exact date.

This was not an easy decision, and we want to make sure the ceremony, while virtual, is momentous and well-thought-out. That said, the commencement committee will begin meeting this week to start planning the event to celebrate our graduates. Please direct all ideas and feedback to Helen Manley at hmanley@prairiestate.edu.

We will share additional information as it becomes available.

Sincerely,

Michael D. Anthony, Ph.D.
Vice President of Student Affairs

Dear Prairie State College Community,

The PSC Administration recently received notice that an individual has self disclosed to a member of the administrative team that they were diagnosed with COVID-19 on April 9. This individual has been on the college's main campus within the last two weeks.

Federal privacy laws protect this individual’s identity and do not allow us to share more detail. However, in compliance with the state’s protocol for confirmed COVID-19 cases, the administration is identifying facts and circumstances that alerts our community that there was an infected individual within our campus environment, identifying those who may have come in close contact with the individual, and making the appropriate notifications.

The Clery Act federal reporting regulations require us to issue a campus Emergency Notification regarding a situation that endangers the campus.

The health and safety of the PSC community is our first priority. Please continue to follow Governor J.B. Pritzker’s stay-at-home orders to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. For more information about PSC’s response to COVID-19, visit prairiestate.edu/covid19.aspx.

PSC Foundation Scholarship Flyer

Prairie State students,

I hope you are all doing well and staying healthy. Now more than ever, leadership matters to keep us moving forward. Students have a voice at the highest level of governance at Prairie State College. That voice is the Student Government Association (SGA). SGA Officer Elections were scheduled on April 7 and 8, but due to the current circumstances, we will be making some changes. If you are interested in becoming an SGA Officer for the 2020-2021 school year, please read the attached packet. Complete the form and email it back to hmanley@prairiestate.edu.

Please read over the duties of the position you are interested in to make sure that is what you want, and that you will be available to fulfill the responsibilities. Disregard the sections that require signatures. Also, please keep in mind that you must be available every Monday from 2 to 4 p.m. If you have already submitted your packet, then you do not have to fill the form out again. The packets are due on April 9 by 4 p.m. Those who qualify will be notified, and then we will hold an online ballot later in April. To qualify, you must maintain enrollment as a Prairie State College student for the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email me at hmanley@prairiestate.edu.

Thank you,

Helen Manley | Manager of Student Life & Leadership Development

To: Students, Faculty, Staff, Administrators, Managers, Adjunct Faculty

 

In response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement on March 29, 2020, extending the recommendation for social distancing through April 30, 2020, the PSC Administration has decided that the college will continue to operate virtually, with most employees working remotely, through that date. Campus buildings will remain closed to students and the community, with only essential personnel reporting to campus, as needed.

Additionally, the PSC administration has decided to suspend all in-person, credit classes and lab sessions through the summer session. All instruction, including laboratory sessions, will be delivered online or through other alternative formats to the maximum extent possible. Laboratory sessions that cannot be delivered online are postponed to future dates to be determined later.

Adult Education will offer a limited number of online courses during the summer session. Some non-credit courses also will be offered in an online format. The administration is waiting for direction about vocational training courses and exploring options for the Kids@College summer programming.

The search process for any open positions has been put on hold until further notice.

We will continue to monitor the ongoing developments with COVID-19 and provide updates as they become available.

Thank you.

Hello Pioneers. This is Dr. Michael Anthony, your Vice President of Student Affairs.

I want to first thank you for your patience and hard work keeping up with the changing nature of your education during this crisis. You are truly helping us to pioneer a new landscape, and we appreciate you so much. Now that you have completed your first week in this virtual world, you may be wondering if you can do this. I believe you can, and we want to help you try. There are a lot of resources on the Navigating Our Virtual Campus website and the COVID-19 Updates Website, but I want to call your attention to two bits of information that can help relieve some of the stress you may be feeling.

Should I try to make it through this class online?

The first step is to always talk to your faculty member. Give it your best to finish, but if you find yourself unable to, the College will accept withdrawals all the way up to the end of the semester. You may also be able to do an Incomplete Grade with your faculty member. At any rate, don't go it alone. Talk to your faculty member and/or the Enrollment Services staff. There are options, depending on your situation, to apply your tuition in part to the next term or to get a partial refund.

I want to try but don't have a computer at home?

Again, talk to us! Tell your faculty member and send an email to pscfoundation@prairiestate.edu to tell us what you need.

I have still not heard from my faculty member; what do I do?

Send your name, the faculty name, course and section number to vpsa@prairiestate.edu. We will get someone to follow up as soon as possible.

The bottom line is this - we care about you, and want to get you through this semester and beyond. Continue to check the website to find answers and contact information you may need. We look forward to your continued success!

Be encouraged, stay healthy, and keep in touch.

#WeArePSC,

Michael D. Anthony, Ph.D.
Vice President of Student Affairs

Dear Student:

Due to Prairie State College moving to a virtual campus in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, students may now electronically submit their graduation petitions for the spring 2020 and summer 2020 semesters. Students that submit their petition online, and are approved for graduation, will have the appropriate graduation fee charged to their account. This fee must be paid prior to the release of diplomas or final transcripts.

The graduation petition is located here: https://prairiestate.edu/student-services/graduationpetition.aspx.

Once the petition is processed, you will receive a response to your PSC student email account. If you need help accessing your student email account, you can contact the help desk at helpdesk@prairiestate.edu.

Please note, the May Commencement Ceremony has been postponed. No further information has been provided at this time. Continue checking the PSC website for the most up-to-date information.

If you have any questions regarding degree conferral, please contact Allison Wilkins at awilkins@prairiestate.edu.

If you have any questions regarding the Commencement Ceremony, please contact Helen Manley at hmanley@prairiestate.edu.

Sincerely,
Allison Wilkins
Manager, Technical Support
Prairie State College

Greetings PSC Students,

As the College is still open (virtually), personal counseling services are available to you. PSC Counselors are using Google Hangouts for phone counseling. Personal Counseling offers the following services:

Personal Counseling
Students receive professional counseling to address emotional issues, family conflict, relationship problems, etc. Due to the presenting problem and/or level of severity, students are assisted by a PSC Counselor or are referred to community counseling services.

Resources
Students are provided with community resources to address whatever basic needs, supplies, financial assistance, etc. that they are in need of.

Academic Support
Assistance is given to students who suffer from test anxiety, or who have difficulty with studying or trying to become more organized, and/or who are in need of a time management study schedule.

If you would like to receive any of the aforementioned services, or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Personal Counselor Shannon Word, NCC, LCPC at sword@prairiestate.edu or at 708-709-3511.

Dear Students,

At Prairie State College, we understand that navigating a virtual campus is a very new experience for many, including us.

But, we are committed to helping our students succeed and finish the semester strong. To help keep you on track, we've collected a variety of resources that will help you along the way. Please visit the Navigating Our Virtual Campus page to access these resources.

The list is not exhaustive, and will be updated regularly in the coming days, as we continue to address questions and concerns that we receive. Please know that the faculty, staff and administration are here to help you. Do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

Below is a list of topics for which you might already have questions. Listed beside each topic is an email address that can be used to communicate with college personnel. Included herein is information for Non-Credit and Continuing Education operations as well. If your concern is about a topic not addressed here, please reach out to stayinformed@prairiestate.edu, and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.

Click here to view a special message from PSC President Dr. Terri L. Winfree.

Topic Email
Add / Drop Courses enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Adult Education and Literacy Students (ESL and HSE) adulted@prairiestate.edu
Advising advising@prairiestate.edu
Application and Enrollment Questions enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Business and Industry continuingeducation@prairiestate.edu
Classroom Accommodations equity@prairiestate.edu
Conference Center conferencecenter@prairiestate.edu
Degree Conferrals enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Disability Services equity@prairiestate.edu
Final Grades enrollment@prairiestate.edu
Financial Aid Disbursements / Questions financial-aid@prairiestate.edu
General Concerns or Questions vpsa@prairiestate.edu
Mandatory Reporting vpsa@prairiestate.edu
Non-Credit Student Concerns psceducation@prairiestate.edu
Placement Testing studentdevelopment@prairiestate.edu
Students in Distress or Crisis (e.g., mental health) studentdevelopment@prairiestate.edu
Student Workers (e.g., timesheets, schedules, etc.) financial-aid@prairiestate.edu
Payments, Payment Plans (existing, new) businessoffice@prairiestate.edu
Account login information, Email, Password resets helpdesk@prairiestate.edu

To: Students, Faculty, Staff, Administrators, Managers, Adjunct Faculty

As you likely have heard, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced today a Stay-at-Home Order for Illinois, beginning Saturday, March 21, 2020 at 5 p.m through April 7. This means that all residents of the state are ordered to stay home as much as possible, and any non-essential businesses should close or allow employees to work remotely, in an extraordinary effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19.

The college already has made the transition from face-to-face classes to online classes, and will continue to operate virtually. Classes resume online only, beginning Monday, March 23

Students should not come to the main campus or any PSC campus location during this time. Students should check with their instructors if they have questions on how instruction will be delivered. Students also should monitor their PSC email and D2L for additional information. If you need assistance in accessing your PSC email or D2L accounts, please contact helpdesk@prairiestate.edu.

No in-person class meetings or in-person laboratory sessions will be held. All instruction, including laboratory sessions, will be delivered online or through other alternative formats to the maximum extent possible. Laboratory sessions that cannot be delivered online are postponed to future dates to be determined later.

Orientation sessions and HESI-A2 admissions testing have been postponed for the Nursing, Dental Hygiene, and Surgical Technology programs, until further notice. Updated information will be shared when available. All other placement testing has been postponed until further notice.

Students are requested and encouraged to practice safe social distancing during the time they are completing their coursework online to limit the potential for exposure in external locations while the campus buildings are closed to the public. If you are experiencing symptoms or believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19, please contact your healthcare provider. Visit CDC.gov for instructions on how to avoid spreading germs and what to do when you are sick.

We’re in this together! If you need any assistance or have questions regarding classes, resources and information regarding PSC’s decisions and response to the COVID-19 pandemic, visit https://prairiestate.edu/covid19.aspx.

The administration has made the decision that, for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester, no in-person class meetings or in-person laboratory sessions will be held. All instruction, including laboratory sessions, will be delivered online or through other alternative formats to the maximum extent possible. This decision was made after careful consideration and in response to state and federal recommendations to help contain the COVID-19 virus and "flatten the curve." The health and safety of our students and employees is our top priority.

College staff and administration will continue to work remotely, for the time being, to ensure students are getting the support they need to succeed, and until it is determined safe to re open the college campus buildings to students and the community. More information will continue to be shared as the situation develops. Please continue to check your PSC email, follow the college's social media pages and keep your PSCAlert account active. Updates will also be available regularly at https://prairiestate.edu/covid19.aspx.

Key college administrators continue to regularly communicate with each other and with the Illinois Community College Board, who is providing recommendations/mandates set forth from the governor's office. We will continue to update and alter operations as any of these recommendations/mandates are received.

Here are some general campus updates:

PSC campus buildings are closed to students and community members. Only faculty and staff members are allowed to enter the building, on an as needed basis, and must check in and out with the PSC Police Department at the M5 entrance of the main building. The PSC Police Department will be on campus throughout the duration of the virtual campus to keep the buildings secure.

The majority of staff and faculty have vacated the buildings and have begun to work remotely. Faculty are being trained on D2L and other staff are participating in D2L learning sessions and learning ways to serve students remotely with Google Hangouts and other methods. This is the last day of a very productive week of training. Videos to previous sessions will be posted for staff to review at a later time.

The campus is being cleaned thoroughly. ABC Service and our facilities staff are really working diligently to keep this a clean and safe place.

The 2020 Commencement Ceremonies, originally scheduled for May 16, have been postponed. The administration is exploring options, and will continue to update as decisions are made regarding the alternatives presented.

We are currently preparing for the Board of Trustees meeting, scheduled for March 31 at 5 p.m. There will be a minimum amount of agenda items, people will be allowed to call in to the meeting, based on the recent announcement from Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker. We will send additional board meeting information in the coming days.

Online Resources:

Library staff has been putting together a list of resources for parents of school-age children to use during the time that K-12 schools are closed. Resources will be added regularly.

Transfer counseling services are available online for students via email or Google Hangouts. Please contact Sarah Hein, Counselor and Transfer Coordinator, at shein@prairiestate.edu to schedule an appointment for a virtual counseling session or with questions about transferring to continue on at a university.

The college continues to recommend that our community continue to practice safe social distancing during this time, as set forth by the White House and CDC: https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/03.16.20_coronavirus-guidance_8.5x11_315PM.pdf

There are staff and faculty who are working diligently to continue to ensure that our students are able to complete the semester successfully. Students, if you have any questions or concerns, please see the "For Students" tab on the COVID-19 updates page for a list of contacts you can reach out to, based on your needs.

Any general questions can be directed to stayinformed@prairiestate.edu.

I thank you for your continued patience and cooperation as we navigate through this challenging time.

Be safe and well.

Thank you to all students, faculty, staff, and community members for your patience and cooperation as we continue to navigate through the rapidly changing circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. College administration has been working diligently to develop a plan to keep people safe during this uncertain time.

Administrators met this morning to discuss an immediate plan of action, beginning tomorrow and moving into the next several weeks. Please understand that the plan, as set out below, is subject to change based on government mandates and CDC recommendations. Please continue to check in for updates, follow us on social media, and make sure your account with PSCAlert is active so you can continue to receive updates as they happen.

Staff members will be available to answer any questions you may have via email during the college’s regular business hours of 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please contact InformPSC@prairiestate.edu

Alternative Instruction

Week of March 16-21

  • No instruction will be delivered.
  • Students should not come to the main campus or any PSC campus location.
  • As previously announced, the College has extended spring break through March 21. Classes will resume March 23, and courses originally scheduled to begin March 16 will begin March 23. All course instruction will be delivered exclusively online. (See information re: Week of March 23-28, below)
  • Adult Education and Literacy classes are suspended through March 31. Unless otherwise noted, they will resume on April 1.

Week of March 23 – 28

  • Students should not come to the main campus or any PSC campus location during this time.
  • No in-person class meetings or in-person laboratory sessions will be held. All instruction, including laboratory sessions, will be delivered online or through other alternative formats to the maximum extent possible.
  • Students are requested and encouraged to practice safe social distancing during the time they are completing their coursework online to limit the potential for exposure in external locations while the campus buildings are closed to the public. If you are experiencing symptoms or believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19, please contact your healthcare provider. Visit CDC.gov for instructions on how to avoid spreading germs and what to do when you are sick.
  • Laboratory sessions that cannot be delivered online are postponed to future dates to be determined later.
  • Students should check with their instructors if they have questions on how instruction will be delivered. Students also should monitor their PSC email and D2L for additional information. If you need assistance in accessing your PSC email or D2L accounts, please contact helpdesk@prairiestate.edu.

Alternative Institutional Operating Procedures (Virtual Campus Procedures) From March 17 through March 31, no College facilities will be available for student or community use. This includes the main campus, Adult Training and Outreach Center (ATOC), Transportation, Warehousing and Logistics Building, Athletics Office, Conference Center, Health Tech Building, and the Matteson Area Center (MAC). The Library, Testing Center, Dental Hygiene Clinic, American Job Center, Illinois Action for Children, PSC Cafeteria, Christopher Art Gallery, computer laboratories and other laboratories will be closed.

March 17- March 31

  • To the maximum extent possible, all College faculty, staff, and administrators will work from home. Some exceptions may apply for grant-funded employees.
  • College faculty who need to prepare for alternative instructional delivery should report to the campus or contact their deans to receive information on training.
  • Employees should contact their supervisors to obtain the software and other items necessary to continue to perform their essential job functions while working from home.
  • Employees are requested and encouraged to practice safe social distancing during the time they are working remotely to limit the potential for exposure in external locations while the campus buildings are closed to the public. If you are experiencing symptoms or believe you may have been exposed to the COVID-19, please contact your healthcare provider. Visit CDC.gov for instructions on how to avoid spreading germs and what to do when you are sick.
  • Cabinet officers will determine what limited faculty and staff members should report to work to support the delivery of alternative instruction and the basic operation of institutional facilities.
  • Student support services (for example, Advising and Enrollment Services) will be available online.
  • Faculty will be provided with continuing support for alternative instructional delivery.

March 31 – May 12

  • Any meetings or events planned on campus after March 31 and through May 12, where more than 50 people are expected to attend, will be cancelled as recommended by the CDC.

Students:

The health and safety of our college community remain our highest priority. We encourage everyone to follow the recommendations set forth by the CDC to help stop the spread of germs: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/index.html. Rest assured that the administration is closely monitoring the frequently developing COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation.

Spring Break Extension

Prairie State College is extending spring break through Sunday March 22. Non-Credit and Continuing Education courses are suspended for the week of March 16. The college will be open on March 16, and all employees (faculty, staff, managers, and administration) should report to work as usual on March 16. On March 23, following the extended spring break, the majority of instruction will be online until April 12. Some exceptions will be made for labs, continuing education, and some other courses. Those exceptions will be communicated prior to March 23.

In case of campus closure, Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, Continuing Education, and the Business Office have continuity plans in place so that students will be able to complete this semester’s courses and have all their on-campus business needs met remotely.

As you know this is a very fluid situation, so these dates may be adjusted as needed.

Event Cancellations

While the campus is not closed, we want to adhere to the CDC recommendation for social distancing, so Prairie State College has decided to cancel several upcoming events. Please visit prairiestate.edu/events for a current list of canceled events and functions. Additionally, all non-essential out of state travel for students and employees has been suspended.

Cleaning Efforts

During Spring Break and going forward, ABC Cleaning has increased cleaning efforts. The company has been using a disinfectant on the “hot spots” of the school, namely doorknobs, handrails, elevator buttons, desktops, restrooms, and any areas where hands will touch. ABC will continue disinfecting nightly to kill any germs on these “hot spots.” The bathrooms are being cleaned with Kaivac Machines with Kaipow, a disinfectant that is being sprayed on walls, toilets, urinals, floors, mirrors, and sinks

PSCAlert

We will continue to keep everyone informed as the situation develops. Please be sure to sign up for PSCAlert, the college’s emergency notification system. If you have already signed up, please login and verify your phone/email contact information. Information on how to sign up or update your account information is available on the college’s website at http://prairiestate.edu/pscalert.

What should you do if you are sick?

Please follow the following instructions set forth by the CDC: Call your doctor: If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as coughing or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/steps-when-sick.html

Thank you for your continued interest in keeping our campus community safe.

Due to concerns surrounding COVID-19 (Coronavirus), Prairie State College has suspended all non-essential school-related, out of state travel effective immediately. If there is a request to waive this decision, it needs to be made to the division's Vice President and approved by the PSC President. Please note that more communication is coming about this and other items related to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

  • Will courses be offered online in the fall?
  • I was supposed to walk the stage in May. Is there an update on commencement?
  • Now that the College is currently virtual, can I still receive counseling to talk about my personal problems?
  • If I am in need of emergency assistance, such as for food, clothing, utilities, etc., is there anyone who can help me?
  • Will there be work study opportunities in the fall?
  • I need assistance with a writing assignment. How can I get the help I need?
  • Are Career Services still available?
  • I need to find a job. Is there someone who can advise me on this?
  • Will PSC still accept deliveries and mail while its facilities are closed?
  • Will placement exams still take place?
  • How do I get books for my fall classes?
  • How do I return Barnes & Noble-PSC Bookstore book rentals when they are due?
  • How do I go about getting a transcript?
  • How do I know for sure if it is an actual employee calling from Prairie State to discuss my account or other college business?
  • How will online classes be delivered in the fall?
  • I forgot my student account information. How can I retrieve it?
  • How do I navigate online resources at PSC?
  • Is tutoring available for virtual campus courses?
  • How do I remove a Business Office hold?
  • How do I submit documents to financial aid?
  • I need to speak with an advisor, how do I get in contact with them?
  • How do I obtain a letter verifying my enrollment for the semester?
  • How do I register for classes?
  • How do I add a class?
  • How do I know if I have to take a placement exam?
  • How do I drop a class?
  • How long do I have to add a class?
  • How long do I have to drop a class?
  • How do I register for the New Student Orientation?
  • Will courses be offered online in the fall?

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Prairie State College administration has announced that the college will continue to operate virtually through the remainder of the year, and all fall classes will be held online except for certain labs.

    I was supposed to walk the stage in May. Is there an update on commencement?

    Congratulations graduates on completing your studies and earning your degree or certificate at Prairie State College! To celebrate your accomplishments, PSC will host a Virtual Commencement Ceremony on August 1, 2020. In addition, graduates will receive a congratulatory gift from the college sometime in July, including a cap and tassel.

    Now that the College is currently virtual, can I still receive counseling to talk about my personal problems?

    Yes, PSC Counselors are using Google Hangouts to meet with students. To learn more about counseling services, please contact Personal Counselor, Shannon Word at sword@prairiestate.edu or at (708) 709-3511.

    If I am in need of emergency assistance, such as for food, clothing, utilities, etc., is there anyone who can help me?

    Yes, Personal Counselor Shannon Word can assist by providing you with referrals to community resources. Counselor Word can be reached at sword@prairiestate.edu or at (708) 709-3511.

    Will there be work study opportunities in the fall?

    Yes, work study opportunities will be available in the fall but on a limited basis. Students will only be allowed to work in offices that operate by appointment only.

    I need assistance with a writing assignment. How can I get the help I need?

    The Writing Center is available for online appointments. Students can make appointments at https://prairiestate.mywconline.com/, and from there they will be given instructions on how to access their online appointment.

    Are Career Services still available?

    Yes. Career Services staff are available virtually to provide assistance with your career planning needs, including resume writing and review, job or internship search information, career and major planning, researching different types of jobs and occupations, interview practice and more! PSC students and alumni also can register to use Pioneers Get Hired, PSC’s online job and internship posting site and career resource center. Please email us at careerdevelopment@prairiestate.edu to schedule an online appointment, or to ask additional questions about accessing our services. A Career Services staff member will reach out to you to schedule the best time and virtual format that works for you!

    I need to find a job. Is there someone who can advise me on this?

    Yes. Contact Career Services at careerdevelopment@prairiestate.edu for assistance in your job search.

    Will PSC still accept deliveries and mail while its facilities are closed?

    Yes, we are receiving mail regularly. We will process all incoming items — such as payments to vendors and donations to the PSC Foundation as quickly as possible. Deliveries directly to PSC will also be accepted at the loading dock.

    Will placement exams still take place?

    Yes. Prairie State College is offering students the ability to complete placement assessments even though the college has moved to a virtual campus. Your first step is to work with an advisor to help determine which placement assessments you need, if any. Please email advising@prairiestate.edu to get the process started. If you need the English/Reading Assessment, you will receive a packet by email to complete at home. For math placement you may now use unproctored assessments to register for classes. Instructions will be emailed to you if applicable.

    How do I get books for my fall classes?

    For students that need to purchase books, you can place an order at prairie.bncollege.com, and your books will be shipped to your home. At this time, we are not offering curbside pickup.

    How do I return Barnes & Noble-PSC Bookstore book rentals when they are due?

    If you have rented textbooks, they can be returned free by mail. Visit the Bookstore's page for easy step-by-step rental return instructions and to create a free shipping label.

    How do I go about getting a transcript?

    Prairie State College has retained Credentials Inc. to accept transcript orders over the Internet. Unofficial transcripts can be obtained by students with active WebAdvisor accounts. Visit the Transcripts page to place your order.

    How do I know for sure if it is an actual employee calling from Prairie State College to discuss my account or other college business?

    Any PSC employee who contacts you will provide you with their name and department. During times such as these, scammers may attempt to take advantage of people through phishing scams or the sales of phony products. Do not reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information. Most departments have a general mailbox. If in doubt, send an email to stayinformed@prairiestate.edu.

    How will online classes be delivered in the fall?

    Online courses at PSC are offered in asynchronous format, which means instruction delivered without real-time interaction, and/or synchronous, where students view live lectures online and participate in discussions through Desire2Learn (D2L) or platforms such as Google Hangouts. Classes are not self-paced, and due dates will apply in all courses. The structure of your online class(es) varies.

    If you have issues logging into D2L, please contact the help desk at helpdesk@prairiestate.edu.

    I forgot my student account information. How can I retrieve it?

    Please contact the help desk at helpdesk@prairiestate.edu.

    How do I navigate online resources at PSC?

    At Prairie State College, we understand that navigating a virtual campus is a very new experience for many, including us. But, we are committed to helping our students succeed and finish the semester strong. Please know that the faculty, staff and administration are here to help you. For help navigating our virtual campus, visit https://prairiestate.edu/student-services/navigatingvirtualcampus.aspx.

    Is tutoring available for virtual campus courses?

    Yes! Email Lisa Hansen at ahansen@prairiestate.edu to be matched with a tutor. Help is available for all credit courses. The tutors are prepared to work with you in many online formats, so you should be able to find one you’re most comfortable using.

    How do I remove a Business Office hold?

    Students with a Business Office hold should send an email with their name and student ID number to businessoffice@prairiestate.edu for information on the hold and how to have it removed.

    How do I submit documents to financial aid?

    Financial Aid documents can be scanned and sent directly to that office at financial-aid@prairiestate.edu. Documents can be submitted by fax to (708) 709-3716.

    I need to speak with an advisor, how do I get in contact with them?

    Please send an email to advising@prairiestate.edu, and an advisor will get back to you.

    How do I obtain a letter verifying my enrollment for the semester?

    Enrollment verification letters can be prepared a week after your last class begins. If you need to verify your enrollment please send an email with the necessary information (i.e. name, date of birth, semester being verified) to enrollment@prairiestate.edu.

    How do I register for classes?

    If this is your first time attending a college or you are transferring from another college or university, send a message from your PSC email account to: advising@prairiestate.edu. A member of the advising team will reach out to you and discuss your next steps in facilitating the registration process (i.e. placement exam, transfer coursework, PSC programs, course offerings, etc.), You will receive a confirmation email once you are officially registered. Please review the academic calendar and summer refund table for applicable deadlines.

    If you are a current or returning PSC student, you can register for classes by logging into WebAdvisor. You also can complete the Registration Form and a member of the Enrollment Services Office will process your request.

    How do I add a class?

    If you are currently registered for summer 2020 courses, you can add a class to your schedule by either accessing WebAdvisor or completing the online Add/Drop Form.

    Please Note: If you are required to meet with an academic advisor prior to registering, send a message to advising@prairiestate.edu. The advisor will assist you in facilitating the registration process.

    How do I know if I have to take a placement exam?

    There are multiple ways in which a student can meet their placement requirements. An academic advisor will help you determine the status of your placement. You can speak with an advisor by emailing advising@prairiestate.edu

    How do I drop a class?

    You can drop a course by logging into WebAdvisor before the refund period for your course ends. After the refund period, you can drop a course by completing the online Add/Drop Form.and a member of the enrollment services staff will process your request.. It is always recommended that you speak with your faculty remember before dropping a course.

    Additionally, withdrawing from a course can impact your financial aid status, so please reach out to financial-aid@prairiestate.edu, before dropping the course.

    How long do I have to add a class?

    You can add a course through the first two days of the start of any session (i.e. 16 week, 14 week, 12 week, etc.) or until the course begins. After the course begins you can add a course through the end of the registration period noted on the academic calendar.

    How long do I have to drop a class?

    You can drop a course through the last day to withdraw from a course noted on the academic calendar. The tuition and fees associated with a dropped course will remain on your account if the course is dropped after the end of the refund period. See the refund table for applicable dates.

    How do I register for the New Student Orientation?

    Please visit https://prairiestate.edu/fye to register for New Student Orientation.

    Student Town Hall Information Sessions

    Community Resources

    Counselors are connecting students to community resources via email or Google Hangouts to obtain various basic needs, supplies, and other assorted, individual needs. For assistance, please contact Personal Counselor, Shannon Word, NCC, LCPC at sword@prairiestate.edu or at 708-709-3511.

    COVID-19 Resources Additional Resources
    • Comcast is offering new customers 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service. Learn more.
    Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for PSC Employees

    Our EAP provider, Perspectives, is available 24/7 to offer support to you and your household members. They are monitoring developments regarding COVID-19 in real time, answering FAQs and sharing relevant information on their website. Refer to the email from Susie Perez, HR, for more information. EAP services are confidential, no cost to you and available when you need them!

    Coronavirus Job Resources: What to do if you're affected

    Resources for small business owners amid COVID-19

    On Demand Fitness Classes: Stay active with free online classes and youth programs through the YMCA. No membership is needed to access the growing list of classes. Visit ymca360.org to get started.



    How to Apply for Admission to Prairie State College


    Complete the online admission application. Once the application is processed you will receive a welcome email from the college and a second email providing your official Prairie State College email address, user ID and password to access various online tools.

    You will receive a confirmation email once your request is processed. Please review the academic calendar and summer refund table for applicable deadlines.

     

    How to Register for Classes


    NOTE: Complete this step after submitting the admission application.


    Guest (Summer Only) Students:

    Students from 4-year colleges and universities, who want to take courses at PSC for the summer, please complete the Registration Form.

    New and Transfer Students:

    If this is your first time attending a college or you are transferring from another college or university, send a message from your PSC email account to: advising@prairiestate.edu.

    A member of the advising team will reach out to you and discuss your next steps in facilitating the registration process (i.e. placement exam, transfer coursework, PSC programs, course offerings, etc.),

    You will receive a confirmation email once you are officially registered. Please review the academic calendar and summer refund table for applicable deadlines.

    Current and Returning PSC Students:

    Current or returning PSC students can register for classes by logging into WebAdvisor. You also can complete the Registration Form.

    You will receive a confirmation email once your request is processed. Please review the academic calendar and summer refund table for applicable deadlines.

     

    How to Add a Course to an Existing Schedule


    If you are currently registered for summer 2020 courses, you can add a class to your schedule by either accessing WebAdvisor or completing the online Add/Drop Form.

    Please Note: If you are required to meet with an academic advisor prior to registering, send a message to advising@prairiestate.edu. The advisor will assist you in facilitating the registration process.

    How to Drop or Withdraw from a Course


    You can drop a course by logging into WebAdvisor or complete the online Add/Drop Form.

    Please reach out to your faculty member before taking any action to drop a course.

    Additionally, withdrawing from a course can impact your financial aid status, so please reach out to financial-aid@prairiestate.edu, before dropping the course.

     

    How to Remove a Business Office Hold


    Send an email that includes your name and student ID number to businessoffice@prairiestate.edu.

    CARES Act

    Emergency grants are available to Prairie State College (PSC) students who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. The funds will be disbursed on a first-come, first-served basis.

    To be eligible, students must meet the following qualifications:
    • Enrolled at PSC for the summer 2020 session.
    • Have a 2019-20 FAFSA on file with PSC
    • Eligible for federal financial aid
    • Have incurred an expense related to COVID-19

    Unfortunately, international and undocumented students are not eligible for the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) funds. If you are a student from one of these groups, there are other types of emergency aid available at PSC. Please email Deborah Smith Havighorst, Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the Prairie State College Foundation, at dhavighorst@prairiestate.edu.

    The application is now closed.

    Please contact the PSC Foundation for Emergency Options.

    CARES Act FAQs

     

    What is the CARES/Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provided by the federal government?

    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress and signed into law to provide economic relief from COVID-19. One section of the CARES Act established the Higher Education Emergency Relief fund and sent money to schools to use for emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the pandemic.

    When will CARES/Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds be available?

    Funds are available now. The application period opens June 11 and closes on June 14.

    Who is eligible for the CARES/Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds?

    Applications will be evaluated on a first-come, first-served basis. Students must have a FAFSA on file with the college.

    I am an international student. Am I eligible to receive CARES Act funds?

    Unfortunately, the U.S. Department of Education does not allow these funds to be used for international or undocumented students. If you are a student from one of these groups, there are other types of emergency aid available at PSC. Please email Deborah Smith Havighorst, Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the Prairie State College Foundation, at dhavighorst@prairiestate.edu.

    How will I be notified if I will receive funds?

    Recipients will be notified through their student email.

    When can I expect to receive the funds?

    We are anticipating the process to take around 30 days from the initial application submission.

    How To Pay


    Prairie State College is now a virtual campus and the payment options are:

    • Credit or debit card payments can be made online through WebAdvisor.
    • Check or money order can be mailed to the school (Attn: Business Office)
    • Payment can be made over the phone Tuesdays and Wednesdays after 8am.
    • Tuition payment plan

    Payment Plans:

    Special four-month payment plan (summer 2020)
    A four-month payment plan has been created to help spread out your summer payments from June through September. Students also will be able to register for the fall semester if you remain current on my plan. Please fill out the online form to set up your payment plan at Summer Payment Plan.

    Nelnet:

    PSC utilizes the services of Nelnet for payment plans. The non-refundable charge for setting up the plan is $30 and is processed separately. If a down payment is required, it is processed immediately.

    CARES Act Report

    Prairie State College (PSC) acknowledges that it signed and filed with the U.S. Department of Education (ED) the Recipient’s Funding Certification and Agreement Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on April 28, 2020 via grants.gov. PSC assures that the institution intends to use, no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students, under the name of CARES Act Student Emergency Fund at PSC.

    On April 28, 2020, PSC received from ED the total amount of funds of $2,523,787.00 pursuant to the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.

     

    Awards to Students


    Number Of Students:

    • 1725: Students enrolled on March 20, 2020.
    • 1211: U.S. Residents beyond High School.
    • 1,208 spring students who initially could be eligible
    • 517: File the FAFSA and qualified for CARES payment on June 14, 2020*

    To identify eligible students, Prairie State searched the enrolled students, removed dual credit, foreign students, and students who had not filed a FAFSA, students who were not meeting SAP requirements, and students who had not satisfied items listed under 484 of the higher education act listed above. Students taking online only courses were excluded. We recognize all students experienced costs due to the closures, so Prairie State included all students who had filed a FAFSA regardless of income and financial need.

    Award Amounts


    Awards were based on credit hours enrolled as of May 18, 2020. Courses dropped before that date were not counted when determining eligibility. Average credit hours enrolled was 9.92 credits.

    • Awards of $500 were given to any student enrolled in three or fewer credits.
    • Awards of $1,000 were given to students enrolled in four-six credits.
    • Awards of $1,600 were given to students enrolled in seven or more credits.

    Prairie State College Distributions


    • $709,200: Distributed between June 11, 2020, and July 1, 2020.
    • $552,694: Remaining funds will be allocated to students who file a FAFSA, meet the 484 of the higher education ACT requirements, and who are actively enrolled for Summer or Fall of calendar year 2020 and who submit a request through the CARES Application for Emergency Financial Assistance form located on the Prairie State College website.

    Payment Process


    • Awards were processed as a financial aid disbursement called Federal CARES Awards
    • Students are able to view their awarded amount and disbursements using the WebAdvisor portal. Initial awards are recorded in the spring 2020 term. Summer 2020 awards are possible starting July 14.
    • Students are paid through the third party vendor Bankmobile via check or electronic funds disbursement if selected on their student account.
    • These funds are paid to the student DIRECTLY, as required by the Department of Education.
    • Students with outstanding balances to the college received the entire disbursement. Any balance due to the college should be paid using the normal billing procedures.

    Use of Funds


    The purpose of these funds, as outlined under the HEERF Student Share, is for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course material, technology, health care, and child-care expenses.

    Cares Expenses and Award Limitations


    Prairie State College allowed anticipated costs for Shelter at Home and remote learning as follows: (While all students will not experience all of these costs, this represents costs that a student could experience due to the pandemic.)

    • Increase in utilities and home necessities $200 per month.
    • Increase in food, cleaning supplies, and general household expenses of $200 per month.
    • Allowance of $60 per month for improved internet capacity and phone access understanding multi-family members need access to services.
    • Technology and course materials, printing supplies and required for online learning $600 per term. This would include the upgrade of phones, routers, computers, printers, and supplies necessary to operate while learning remotely.
    • Health care costs $50 per month for medications, facemasks, office visits, etc.
    • Child-care expenses $600 per month for students with qualifying children.

    The cost outlined here establishes the budget within which CARES Funds can be allocated. Remote learning for Prairie State College for spring is based on two months, and total costs range from $1620 to $2820 for each period. Students will not be asked to report individual costs, however, the total amount of CARES funds to an individual student cannot exceed these thresholds without further documentation from the student.

    By cashing the check or utilizing the direct deposit, students acknowledge they experienced cost related to the disruption of campus operations.

    Prairie State College looks forward to the day when we can open our campus to the community without the limitations and restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Until then, the college has established Building Access Guidelines to provide a framework for employees, students, community members, and guests to enter PSC campuses and facilities safely. While the college is operating virtually for the fall semester, and instruction will be delivered primarily online, PSC still wants to ensure that offices, departments, and services are available for students on campus.

     

    Please note: These guidelines are subject to change at any time based on institutional, local, state, or federal guidance.

    Building Access Guidelines

    Prairie State College now offers a discount to Lake County residents!

    Here are the cities we serve:

    • Cedar Lake
    • Crown Point
    • Dyer
    • East Chicago
    • Gary
    • Griffith
    • Hammond
    • Highland
    • Hobart
    • Lake Station
    • Leroy
    • Lowell
    • Merrillville
    • Munster
    • Saint John
    • Schererville
    • Schneider
    • Shelby
    • Whiting
    • Winfield

    Click here to get started!:

     

    Scholarships are available for those who qualify.