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Guide to campus life during winter break and D-Term

Students staying at Lawrence for December Term or any part of December this year can expect to see a reduced version of their current life on campus, with slight changes in housing, food, COVID-19 safety protocols and academics.  

December Term, more commonly known as D-Term, is an optional two-week period of brief, intensive courses worth three units of credit, according to the Lawrence website. Students may only take one D-Term class per year and will remain on campus after Thanksgiving.  

Students who are unable to return home for winter break for any reason — financial or personal — may also remain on campus, provided they filed a request to do so. Associate Dean of Students for Residential Education and Housing Amy Uecke estimated a couple hundred students remain on campus during December. 

Students who have filed a form requesting to remain on campus through December or are taking a D-Term class will not have to leave their rooms when residence halls close at noon on Nov. 24. If they choose, they may still travel home for Thanksgiving and return when residence halls reopen on Nov. 28.  

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Housing and Food 

Uecke said Residential Education and Housing will receive the names of students staying for any part of December and will inform Community Advisors (CAs) and Residence Hall Directors (RHDs) that those students do not need to be checked out of housing for winter break. Students will remain in their original rooms. 

CAs are not required to be on campus for D-Term, so there will not be planned residence hall activities during December. RHDs will maintain their regular office hours. Campus Safety will be on campus to assist students should the need arise. Residential Education and Housing will be reachable via Campus Safety, should students find themselves in unforeseen circumstances and without somewhere to go. 

Bon Appetit will be reducing their hours for December. Students enrolled in a D-Term plan will pay tuition, room and board for the period, and will be placed on a meal plan that runs from dinner on Nov. 28 to lunch on Dec. 10. Julie Severance, Bon Appetit General Manager, said Andrew Commons hours will be reduced to breakfast 8 a.m.–9 a.m., lunch 12 p.m.–1 p.m. and dinner 5:30 p.m.–6:30 p.m. Brunch on Saturdays and Sundays will be 11 a.m.–12 p.m. 

Students who are not enrolled in a D-Term course will only pay for housing and will not be placed on a meal plan, Uecke said. During D-Term, they have the option to pay for a meal swipe using Viking Gold, cash or card at the door. Breakfast is $5.85, lunch and brunch are $7.80 and dinner is $10.95.  

The Commons will only have certain stations open but will still have options to fit all dietary needs, according to Severance. Which stations remain open will be determined by the number of students staying on campus. Kaplan’s Café and Kate’s Corner Store will be closed for D-Term, and students will not have Culinary Cash on their meal plan. 

Andrew Commons closes for the year after lunch on Dec. 10. Students remaining on campus for the rest of December will have to provide their own meals, according to Uecke. Dorm kitchens will be open for students to cook, but they will have to provide their own pots, pans and cooking utensils due to COVID-19 safety protocols. Uecke said Residential Education and Housing and International House are looking into setting up a shopping shuttle for students to buy groceries during December.  

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Safety and COVID-19 

D-Term will follow the same COVID-19 safety protocols as Fall Term, according to Jillian Drier, Director of Health Services. Students are expected to honor the pledge and will be asked to test for COVID-19 on Nov. 29 and Dec. 6. D-Term will begin with in-person classes immediately.  

If students travel home and return for Thanksgiving, they are asked to follow the guidelines laid out in Vice President for Student Life Christopher Card’s email on Nov. 5. Students are asked to limit their exposure off campus, monitor their health and avoid gathering with people outside their everyday bubble.  

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Academics 

This year, six D-Term courses are being offered: Food, Politics and Culture; Happiness: Meditation and Science; Make it Stick: Using the Learning Sciences to Improve Memory; The Science of Super Heroes; Introduction to Tropes and Stereotypes in Theatre Film and Media: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly; and Introduction to R and Excel for Data Analysis.  

There are 65 total students registered for D-Term classes, according to Voyager. Class instruction and activities will vary from seminars to cooking projects and regular meditation practice.