Dear Students,

It has been lovely to see those of you who are studying and working on campus this summer, and I am so excited to welcome everyone in the fall! As we prepare for the upcoming semester, I am writing with information and updates that will be helpful to each of you in your planning. Please read this email carefully and in its entirety, and save it for future reference. Also, please be sure to check the Returning to Campus website regularly for any new updates.

But first, on behalf of all our faculty and staff, I want to welcome the incoming Class of 2025 and new transfer students! I have heard wonderful things about your accomplishments and how excited you are to begin your journey at Barnard. We look forward to engaging with you this summer and to welcoming you to campus in August.

Move-in Dates

For students who will be living in the residence halls, general move-in dates for the Fall semester are August 29, 30, and 31. Incoming first-year and transfer students will move in first on August 29, returning sophomores on August 30, and all other students on August 31.

To help us best coordinate and ensure a smooth process, all students will be asked to sign up for a check-in time slot on their designated move-in day. While you may be eager to make travel plans, we encourage you to wait until you have selected your check-in time slot. If you must arrange travel now, please be flexible, as your planned arrival in New York may not align with the time slots available. We will hold times specifically for those traveling from time zones other than EDT.

Move-in time slots will be sent in late July and housing/roommate assignments will also be sent in late July (early August for first-years). Applicants without guaranteed housing will hear more from Residential Life in early August and can reach out to with any questions.

Welcome Back, Welcome Home, and Orientation

A lot has changed since we were last on campus together, so we are pleased to introduce Welcome Back, Welcome Home, an extended orientation program for all new and returning students. Returning students will receive information later in the summer about events and activities specifically for the classes of 2022, 2023, and 2024.

Members of the Class of 2025 and new transfer students will begin their Barnard experience with our New Student Orientation Program (NSOP), a multi-day event designed to help the newest members of our community learn about campus resources and build relationships with each other. You will receive more information about NSOP schedules and orientation groups later in the summer. Until then, visit the Orientation website for any updates.

Move-in Guidelines & Arrival Testing

Please review the Move-In, Testing, and Arrival Quarantine Outline to get a sense of what to expect during this process. Please note that all students must take a COVID-19 test before arriving on campus. More details will be communicated in the coming weeks. 

We look forward to welcoming students, families, and other guests onto campus during move-in. However, please note the following: we will not require visitors to be tested or vaccinated for COVID-19 to come onto campus, but only students will be allowed into the residence halls during move-in. We know this may be disappointing, but as advised by our infectious disease experts, we want to manage density in our residence halls at a time when people are arriving to campus from all over the world. We hope to allow residence hall visits from students' family members and friends later in the semester. 

We do accommodate student requests for move-in assistance for disability-related reasons through the Center for Accessibility Resources and Disability Services (CARDS) website. 

COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement

As a residential community, we want to do all we can to help protect the health and safety of ourselves and those around us. Having a fully vaccinated campus also puts us in a better position to return to the many activities and experiences that existed on our campus prior to the pandemic.

As you know, we require all students to provide proof that they have received a COVID-19 vaccine prior to the start of the Fall 2021 semester. You will hear soon about how to upload your proof of vaccine to be in compliance with this requirement. Documented medical and religious exemptions will be accommodated. Also, we will work closely with international students and others who may not have ready access to vaccines over the summer to ensure they are able to be vaccinated as soon as possible upon arrival to NYC.

While this vaccine requirement takes effect for fall, we encourage you to get vaccinated as soon as possible; students should plan on having their final dose no later than August 1. Please continue to monitor Barnard’s COVID-19 Vaccine website for updated information and send any questions you may have to

Community Pledge

It is our collective responsibility to be mindful of one another and to act with the utmost respect and consideration of the community around us. Therefore, all members of the Barnard community will be expected to acknowledge and adhere to a Community Pledge, including that all community members comply with our health and safety guidelines. A Community Pledge for the 2021-2022 academic year will be made available in the coming weeks. In addition, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with our current Community Conduct information.

Academics Updates

All Fall semester classes will be taught in person, and students should plan to attend classes on campus in New York City.

We are closely monitoring information regarding international students’ ability to obtain a visa. As needed, International Student Services (ISS) will contact students as information about their home countries becomes available. If you are a student who requires a F-1 visa to study in the United States and you have questions or concerns about your status for the upcoming Fall semester, please contact ISS ( for assistance.

In mid-July we will transition our email distribution lists to your class year as of Fall 2021. As many of you know and our new students will soon learn, we send a bi-weekly newsletter called Barnard 411 with announcements and updates. So be on the lookout for a welcome from your Class Dean in the newsletter!

Tuition Bill and Financial Aid

The Barnard Board of Trustees has approved the 2021-2022 rates for tuition, fees, and room and board. The new term bill represents a total increase of 3.5% from the 2020-2021 rates, which is a result of the growing costs associated with returning to full on-site operations in the Fall, annual recruitment and retention of faculty and staff, maintaining our commitment to need-blind admissions, and enhancing our excellent academic programs. The College provides more than $40 million annually in aid that represents approx 20% of the College's operating budget and continues to meet full demonstrated financial need for all students. Financial aid awards for the coming academic year will take into account the new term bill rates.

First-years were sent an email to accept their updated financial aid awards last week and students in other classes will be receiving their 2021-2022 financial aid award letters the last week of June. The Fall 2021 term bills will be sent electronically to all students on July 6th via Nelnet (the College’s new payment provider), with a due date of August 6th.

Meal Plans

You can find meal plan information for Fall 2021 on the Dining website and the Bursar site. Students will be automatically enrolled in a default meal plan based on their residence hall assignment or non-residential status. As in past years, all residential students are required to be on a meal plan; meal plans will be optional for students not living in the residence halls. All residential first-year students will be assigned to the Standard Platinum Plan. Sophomore, junior, and senior students living in the Quad will be assigned to the Flex 150 Meal Plan. Upper-class students residing elsewhere will be enrolled in the Flex 100 Meal Plan. Upper-class students can change their Fall 2021 meal plan through the Meal Plan Change Form starting on July 8 through August 25, 2021 and students on a meal plan will also be able to take advantage of the meal exchange with Columbia, with access to Ferris Booth, John Jay, and JJ’s Place.

Please note that students not in their first-year who receive grant-based financial aid will be packaged with the Flex 150 Plan if they live in the residence halls or the Convenience Plan if they are non-residential. If you have any questions, please direct them to

Save the Date: Convocation

Finally, I want to invite you to save the date for Convocation, a tradition in which the entire Barnard community gathers together to officially open the academic year. Convocation 2021 will take place on September 14 at Riverside Church and will be followed by a community-wide reception. We hope you will all join us wearing your class color t-shirt (which all students will receive in the week before Convocation).

Stay well and enjoy the remainder of your summer.

Dean Grinage