MSU adds student-focused fall break to their academic calendar

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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Michigan State University is supporting their students overall health and wellness by making a fall break part of their academic schedule.

The fall break will be for all the years to come. MSU is taking the importance of health, mental health and wellness more seriously as they believe students need a method to reset.

Following a request from the Associated Students of Michigan State University (ASMSU), leaders planned a pilot fall break for the 2020-2021 academic year but delayed it to the 2021-2022 term because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Academic Calendar Task Force, formed by the University Council, then analyzed the MSU academic calendar and showcased recommendations for improvements.

According to MSU president, Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D., the students are the university’s main priority.

“Making student success our main focus means collaborating with our students, faculty and staff to develop ideas and undertaking a thorough examination of any changes to structure and support services to ensure the best possible outcomes for our students.”

MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D.

The University is willing to make changes to better uplift their students through academics and in life.

The fall break will include two full days to recuperate. All future fall breaks will occur near the middle of the semester on a Monday and Tuesday.

There will be no scheduled classes or instruction, synchronous or asynchronous. Students will not have to stress about turning in assignments on those days either. There will be no quizzes, tests or exams for the entire break period.

To balance the number of class days during the fall semester, beginning in 2023, classes will start on a Monday instead of a Wednesday.

The Academic Calendar Task Force also reviewed the spring semester calendar. To balance the number of teaching days between the fall and spring semesters, the spring semester will be shortened by one week beginning in 2024.

“Adding a student fall break to our calendar will provide students with dedicated time away from instruction near the middle of the semester and support their academic success, mental health and well-being. Changes in the spring semester similarly work to ensure we pair the best instructional environment with student learning goals.”

Teresa K. Woodruff, Ph.D., MSU provost and executive vice president for academic affairs

There may be some scheduling differences for those who are in MSU medical colleges, the College of Law and other professional graduate programs.

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