The health, safety and well-being of our students is our top priority, and we are committed to maintaining an excellent quality of education through this unprecedented situation. As of Friday, March 13, the GSD has shifted to online coursework for the remainder of the semester. Courses and meetings are being conducted through Zoom, which can be accessed through the main menu of the Canvas system. All services offered by the Office of Student Services will continue normal operations, including student affairs, financial aid, career services, enrollment functions, and admissions. For questions, please email the appropriate contact on the Office of Student Services website. Students with questions about processing their I-20 should contact Sean Conlon. For departmental-related questions, students should contact their respective department staff as they normally would for questions or assistance.

Admitted students: Visit the admissions status portal for updates on virtual events and other essential information related to admission.

Health and well-being

All HUHS services are fully operational, and Urgent Care remains open from 8:00 am – 10:00 pm EDT every day. A nurse advice line remains available from 10:00 pm – 8:00 am at 617-495-5711. More details are available at www.huhs.harvard.edu. Counseling and Mental Health Services are available by phone at 617-495-2042 or through the patient portal. If you are a student and are feeling unwell, please inform Student Services, who can work with you to be in touch with your instructors. Please follow the protocols the university has outlined if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms.

Access to buildings

As of March 16, the GSD will close access entirely to our academic facilities, including the Fabrication Lab and Loeb Library, for a full 2.5 weeks (until April 2), at which point the situation will be reassessed. As of 6:00 pm on Sunday, March 15, students are expected to have moved out of GSD buildings what belongings they need to continue coursework remotely. All courses will continue online, and while students will not be able to enter any GSD buildings until further notice, the school’s administrative leadership has worked extremely hard to maintain remote accessibility of resources fundamental to the academic experience. Among the resources you will have ongoing access to are the digital collections offered by the Loeb Library. Another is a Virtual Help Desk, which starting Monday, March 16, will be open 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Mondays through Fridays to consult on and help resolve any IT-related issues.

Courses and Studios

All Harvard courses are moving online, and faculty and staff are working hard to make a variety of course offerings available through Zoom, which can be accessed through the main menu of the Canvas system. Courses will remain in their EST time zone time slots. See the Zoom Training and Help resource page for basics on teaching, set-up, and troubleshooting. Harvard has compiled a series of resources for learning remotely.

Virtual Help Desk

As of March 16, CRG staff are offering a Virtual Help Desk through Zoom. Connect live 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Mondays through Fridays for help resolving IT-related issues.

The Fabrication Lab

As of March 16, access to the Fabrication Lab, along with the rest of GSD academic facilities, is closed for a full 2.5 weeks (until April 2), at which point we will reassess the situation.

Frances Loeb Library hours and resources

As of March 16, the Frances Loeb Library will be closed to in-person visits for at least until April 2, but the library will continue to provide the following resources online: access to electronic collections, research and teaching support, and Academic Writing Services (by appointment). The library will continue meeting regularly with individuals and classes using Zoom, and are available to consult on specific needs or requests by contacting Jessica Armstrong (Access Services), Michelle Baildon (Collections), Bruce Boucek (GIS and Data), or Sarah Dickinson (Research and Teaching).

For questions related to library resources and services, including research consultations see the following:

As of March 17: If you have materials checked out:

Returns: Hold on to everything you have. This includes books, Borrow Direct and Interlibrary Loan materials, DVDs, periodicals, etc. There’s no way to return anything right now.
Fines: All recall fines that accrue while the Library is closed will be waived. Reach out to us if you see fines on your account.
Due dates: All due dates can be extended. Nothing should be due in the immediate future. Reach out to us if you need help extending a due date.
Graduating seniors: We are working on solutions specifically for you, but hold on to loans for now.

If you need materials:

Electronic materials: You may submit Scan & Deliver requests for book chapters and journal articles, and we will try to fill as many requests electronically as possible.

  • Scan & Deliver requests may be placed through HOLLIS. If the item you're interested in is eligible, the Scan & Deliver link will appear in the item record.
  • You may also submit a Scan & Deliver request manually via your Scan & Deliver account.


Physical materials
: The borrowing of print materials has been suspended until further notice. Physical items are no longer requestable in HOLLIS.

Events and public programs

All school-wide events and public programs for the spring semester are cancelled. We strongly discourage any events organized by individual departments, administrative offices, student groups, or other individuals or outside groups. All events in GSD buildings are prohibited until further notice.

Travel policies and campus restrictions

All university-related international travel is prohibited. All personal international travel is strongly discouraged. All university-related non-essential domestic air travel is prohibited. We strongly urge extreme caution and judgment for your personal domestic travel. Anyone who returns or arrives to campus from a location with a CDC level 3 travel warning for COVID-19, must complete this confidential health form at least 48 hours before your return/arrival to campus and self-isolate using guidance from Harvard University Health Services. Most self-isolations will last 14 days.

As we respond to the current, ever-shifting situation, it is very important that we are able to maintain contact with you. Please take a moment to update your contact information in my.harvard. Refer to your email for detailed instructions from Sean Conlon on how to use the site.

If you are traveling domestically or internationally, be sure to register with Global Support Services. If you are traveling specifically for the spring break period and returning to Cambridge, select “Spring Break 2020,” as the purpose for your travel. Additional information on travel registration and support.

If you are living in Harvard Housing or residential halls, you will need to complete the HUHS health form 48 hours before returning. Despite the fact that this form notes it is intended for those who travel to Level 3 areas, you will still need to fill this form out regardless of where you travel. Additional information is available at: Spring Break Travel Registration Instructions for Students and Residential Staff.

University-related emergencies

Contact the 24/7 Operations Center at 617-495-5560. Building Services will be monitoring the email address  buildingservices@gsd.harvard.edu. A full list of Emergency Contacts for the GSD Community can be found in the Resource Center under Emergencies.

Student Employment for the Spring Semester

As of March 12, 2020, at 5:50 pm EDT: Students employed as teaching or course assistants will most likely be able to continue their responsibilities and will be paid for hours worked. These students should connect with faculty supervisors to discuss work planning. Students employed in areas that will face disruption like the Fabrication Lab, Loeb Library, or Building Services may be reassigned to new tasks. When reassignment is not possible, he/she/they will still be paid based on the average number of hours worked per week during the semester. Students employed by other departments should check in with their supervisors. Although you may not be able to perform your traditional duties, there may be alternative work available.

If a student would have been employed, but the job was eliminated and he/she/they cannot be reassigned, Student Services will again look at past averages to calculate compensation. If your work situation has not been addressed, or you have questions, please email Keith Gnoza at financial_aid@gsd.harvard.edu.

Housing

As of March 12, 2020, at 5:50 pm EDT: Graduate students in Harvard residential halls/dormitories will continue to have accommodation on campus. However, they may need to be moved to another room or unit on campus in an effort to space students out and slow the spread of COVID-19. Students living in Harvard Housing with questions about lease termination should contact the leasing office at (617) 495-1459 or leasing@harvard.edu. For those students who wish to terminate their current lease or housing contract prior to June 30, 2020, HUH will end their liability as of the date the unit is vacated. Students with different living arrangements should reach out to Kelly Teixeira, Manager of Student Accommodations, at ktwisnaskas@gsd.harvard.edu if they need assistance. Cases will be assessed individually.

If you are living in Harvard Housing or residential halls and you plan to travel over spring break, you will need to complete the HUHS health form 48 hours before returning. Despite the fact that this form notes it is intended for those who travel to Level 3 areas, you will still need to fill this form out regardless of where you travel. Additional information is available at: Spring Break Travel Registration Instructions for Students and Residential Staff.

Emergency Assistance

As of March 12, 2020, at 5:50 pm EDT: The GSD is organizing an emergency fund to assist students who depend on financial aid and others who find themselves with unforeseen and insurmountable financial hurdles. Details will follow by email. Meanwhile, students who have specific and immediate financial issues should email Keith Gnoza, Director of Financial Assistance at financial_aid@gsd.harvard.edu.

Additionally, drop-in hours with Financial Aid staff will be available in Student Services, Gund 422 on Friday, March 13, from 9:00 am – 4:00 p.m.

Moving Assistance

Moving supplies and carts will be available in Piper Auditorium for GSD students Friday March 13 through Sunday March 15 at 6:00 pm. Moving Vans and Passenger Vans will be on-site 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Friday March 13 through Sunday March 15.

If you require assistance with a Moving Van, please try to meet the following schedule:
Friday, March 13, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm = Thesis Students, MDes, and DDes
Saturday, March 14, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm = Gund 3rd Floor and 4th floor studio levels
Sunday, March 15th, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm = Gund 2nd Floor, Mezzanine, and 485 Broadway

Building Services understands that your schedule might not align with the above, and you are welcome to use these available resources in whatever manner best fits with your schedule. All items to be moved should be brought to Piper Auditorium between 9:00 am – 6:00 pm on the dates above. Each moving box should be labeled with student name, contact #, and off-site address. A Building Services representative will available to assist in the logistics of moving your items to an off-site location, as well as providing transportation for you via passenger van. In order to assist Building Services in anticipating resources needed, please sign up for moving assistance on this google sheet.

We understand this is a very stressful and unexpected transition for everyone. Please, direct any questions around moving to: buildingservices@gsd.harvard.edu.

GSD Student Payroll

Students holding a current job at the GSD who will continue to work remotely, please see below the process for submitting your weekly time sheets. All electronically submitted forms must be in a PDF file to ensure Finance has legible and correctly formatted files for payroll records. It is imperative that you complete and submit your time each week worked. Should you have any questions regarding this process, please contact your payroll coordinator directly (list of payroll coordinators by department is below).

Download a Work-Study Timesheet. Download a Non-Work Study Timesheet.

  • Scan the completed time sheet
  • Email the time sheet to your supervisor for approval. If the person who approves your time also submits your weekly hours, you have completed the remote submission process.
  • For those of you whose supervisor is not your payroll coordinator, please follow the following instructions:
    • Option 1: Supervisor sends the signed time sheet back to student( PDF file) and student sends it to payroll coordinator
    • Option 2: Supervisor sends the email directly to the payroll coordinator with the word approved in the subject line of the email

If you do not have access to printers and/or scanners, please send an email to your supervisor detailing the daily hours worked, date, time in and out and total hours worked for the week. Once your supervisor approves the email, please forward the approval email to the payroll coordinator. The payroll coordinator will enter the approved time.

For students planning to start a new job and that includes work remotely: You must obtain a New Hire Form if you have not done so already.

  • E-mail your payroll coordinator copying your supervisor, letting them know that you will start a new job. You will receive a hire form and any additional paperwork if needed.
  • Complete the form, scan it and send it to your supervisor (in a PDF file).
  • Have your supervisor sign it (either electronically or hard copy) and send it back to you.
  • Once you receive completed and signed form, please e-mail it to your payroll coordinator.

Direct Deposit/Paper Checks: If you have not signed up for direct deposit, now is a good time to do so. You can sign up directly through via PeopleSoft: Main Menu>Self Service>My Pay>Direct Deposit. Instructions and other information for setting up direct deposit are available on the Harvard's Student Employment Office website. Please note, activation of direct deposit can take a couple weeks, so it is very important that your address in PeopleSoft is your most current address. If you are currently registered as a Harvard student, you can update your address in your my.harvard.edu account

Payroll Coordinators by Department:

  • Student Services – Ryanne Hammerl
  • Career Services – Anne Creamer
  • Fab Lab – Iris Ayala
  • Library – Linda Gregory
  • CRG – Iris Ayala
  • Building Services – Dalya Al Mharib
  • Exhibition – Tina O’Brien
  • Office of Urbanization – Christina Burkot
  • Green Cities and Buildings – Bob Marino
  • Academic Programs – Pilar Raynor; Include Daniela Miclea
  • Dean’s Office – Pilar Raynor Jordan
  • Loeb Fellows – Arin Gregorian; Include Daniela Miclea

Frequently Asked Questions

What steps should I take to transition to remote coursework?

If you haven't already, familiarize yourself with HarvardKey and Duo login requirements and Canvas web-based course tools, and speak with your instructors about their plans to continue your courses online. Download the Zoom app and practice using Zoom for one-on-one and group meetings. Computer Resources Group and Library Staff will be offering a drop-in clinic for anyone who would like to receive hands-on assistance in learning how to use the program. Staff will be located in Frances Loeb Library/ Collaboration Space 2 during the week of March 9–13 for drop-in sessions between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm. Computer Resources and Helpdesk are available to answer questions and troubleshoot problems.

What will happen for summer research jobs and other GSD summer programs? Can faculty members still hire students or graduates for summer work?

Faculty Affairs will continue to review and provide support for hiring academic researchers for faculty sponsored projects and research initiatives. Please keep in mind that 60-90 days lead time is needed to complete an academic hire if a visa is required, and at least 30 days for all other hires.

I am planning to start a university job after March 13, 2020. What should I do?

If you are planning to start your first university job after March 13, you must see your payroll coordinator by close of business on Friday, March 13. This also applies to those who have not worked in over a year. At the meeting you will do the following: Complete an I-9 Form and provide the required documents depending on your status. US Citizens will need to present: Unexpired passport or a Driver’s License and Social Security Number. In addition, you will need to complete required tax form(s). Non-US Citizens will need to present: Passport, I-20 or DS2019, and Copy of I-94. I-9 and Tax Form Submission must be done, if possible, before EOD, Friday, March 13. If you have any questions regarding this process or any questions about future employment, please see your payroll coordinator. General payroll questions can be directed to Pilar Raynor Jordan. If you have, or had, a job during the Spring semester, this does not apply to you.

Will my tuition be refunded or discounted for the Spring semester?

As long as instruction continues, tuition will not be refunded.

Do I need to self-isolate for COVID-19?

HUHS has put together a one-pager of potential scenarios based on the best scientific advice currently available (updated March 16, 2020).

Will my academic accommodations be impacted?

The Dean of Students and Student Accommodations Coordinator are working with students with academic accommodations to ensure that they are able to access their course content and instruction. Students receiving classroom accommodations such as class notes and Communication Access Real-time Translation (CART) services will continue to receive those accommodations. At this time, there have been no changes to the current note taking process. CART services will be provided remotely through Zoom, and students receiving CART services will be followed-up with individually with details. If there are questions related to the accessibility of Zoom, we encourage you to visit Zoom’s accessibility page.

Exam Accommodations: All exams will be administered remotely. Students who are registered and eligible to receive exam accommodations will continue to receive their accommodations. If you have questions or concerns about how online administration will impact your exam-taking, please email Kelly Wisnaskas, the GSD Accommodations Coordinator, with the subject line “Online Exam Administration.” Students who have questions or concerns regarding provisional or pending accommodations can again reach out to Kelly Wisnaskas to discuss next steps.

Registering for Accommodations: Students who are interested in registering for accommodation or in need of temporary accommodations due to illness, injury, personal or medical emergency may reach out to accessibility@gsd.harvard.edu. Reasonable accommodations will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

This page will be updated as new information becomes available. Last updated March 26, 2020 4:57 pm EDT.