Message from Dean Marcus-Newhall and Dean Johnson

July 28, 2020

Dear Scripps students,

Since the decision to be remote for fall 2020, faculty and staff have been working intensely to ensure that the hallmarks of the Scripps student experience translate in a virtual world. This is an opportunity to innovate and reimagine the ways we learn and grow together, stay connected, expand our social networks and support one another.

Learning and Growing Together

Our faculty are reinventing and redesigning their courses for remote delivery. Faculty are energized and excited as they’ve discovered that the remote environment offers new opportunities for instruction.  Faculty are busy bringing guest speakers to classes, engaging with local community partners, building project-based learning, designing kitchen-chemistry lab materials to mail to you, and engaging with creative approaches to assignments and assessments.  Whether the topics are human health, social justice, art, dance, politics, economics, or chemistry, many courses are focused on current events and how academic theory intersects with our daily lives.  Faculty are looking forward to welcoming you back into the academic conversation.

Many faculty already have been communicating with their academic advisees this summer and some faculty have engaged with students registered for their fall classes. The faculty are reimagining office hours and ways to engage with students in and out of the classroom.

Resources for academic support will be available remotely through multiple channels such as those available through the Dean of Students Office, the Writing Center, the Modern Languages Resource Center, and student course assistants.

Staying Connected and Supporting Each Other

Our planning for the student experience outside of the classroom is organized around three principles: Vibrant Community, Student Well-being and Support to Thrive.

Vibrant Community: We are especially focused on setting up the newest members of our community for success. Scripps This Summer (STS) is helping incoming students connect with each other, faculty and staff.  On August 3, new students will transition from STS to New Student Orientation and Programs (NSPO), which will further immerse students in the Scripps experience by focusing on academics, community connections and expectations. The NSPO schedule can be found here. During the fall term, Virtual Scripps 360 will help new students navigate the first year through staff and student led interactive workshops covering academic success in a virtual world, time management, wellness, how to get involved at Scripps, and so much more.

The Laspa Center for Leadership will continue to help students connect over programs like Listen to Lead and the Student Leadership Institute, as well as by providing immersive opportunities for leadership development through the Laspa Fellows program and skills development workshops.  A talented and enthusiastic group of Community Coordinators have as their sole purpose helping Scripps students find community virtually and making it fun! Scripps Associated Students (SAS), Student Clubs and Organizations (CLORGS) will be up and running in the fall with the help of the Office of Student Engagement and a Virtual Programming Guide. Dedicated Peer Mentors are partnering with the College and International Place to support international students. SCORE will be led by a new director, who will work with SCORE interns to engage and connect SCORE communities. Opportunities to engage across the Claremont Colleges remain-The Office of Black Student Affairs (OBSA), Chicano Latino Student Affairs (CLSA) and 5C Clubs and Organizations.

Students should also expect new and exciting ways to connect with Scripps alumni and leaders across the globe. Olive Grove is coming this fall and is an online networking platform that will connect students to mentoring and professional development opportunities.

Student Well-being: We have increased resources dedicated to student wellness. On-demand 24/7 virtual medical visits will be available to students in all fifty states domestically via telemedicine. Student mental health support will come from a variety of sources including Monsour, Scripps Off Campus Referral Program and TalkNow, an on-demand 24/7 tele-counseling option available to both domestic and international students. TalkNow is not just for students in crisis. Telemedicine and tele-counseling access is being provided at no additional cost to enrolled students. Scripps Off Campus Referral Program, overseen by our Case Management Office, provides subsidies of up to $75 per session to cover counseling costs for a local therapist, many of whom will provide services through online platforms. Because we will not be together in Claremont this fall, students may choose to treat with a therapist in their area.

Wellness programming will continue to extend beyond physical and mental well-being. Be sure to check out Tiernan’s wellness newsletter, which will connect you to group yoga, meditation and other interactive ways to reduce stress, connect over fun activities and stay healthy.

Supporting to Thrive: We are fortifying the strong network of student support that is signature Scripps. Primary Contact Deans are looking forward to getting to know new students and reconnecting with returners. The deans will hold weekly open office hours and are available to talk during these last weeks of summer. The students, faculty and staff leading Scripps FirstGen@Scripps program are excited to welcome the class of 2024 and working together to plan an exciting Pre-Orientation Program. Scripps Advocates continue to partner with our Title IX office and the EmPOWER Center to support survivors of sexual assault. Support for students with disabilities and tutoring remain staples of the Office of Academic Services, which is also planning workshops on excelling while learning remotely. Individualized academic coaching is also available.

We are excited to know that so many of you will join us in the fall and we look forward to keeping ScrippsStrong, together!


Amy Marcus-Newhall

Vice President for Academic Affairs/

Dean of Faculty

Charlotte Johnson

Vice President for Student Affairs/

Dean of Students