Message to Students

August 26, 2020

Dear Bulldogs!

As we all return to campus and our statewide locations, I will be communicating more frequently to address common FAQs and to share important and timely information.

Is Ferris State offering COVID-19 testing on-campus for students?

Yes. Students living on-campus will be required to test for COVID-19 upon check-in. Each residential student will be provided a free, self-administered swab test, and instructed on how to complete the test.  The expected turnaround time for test results is 24 to 48 hours. For more information, visit our COVID-19 Testing FAQ’s on the University’s coronavirus website.

It is important to remember that testing is not a substitute for prevention measures. All students should remain diligent in taking precautions to mitigate their risk of contracting the virus or unknowingly spreading it to others. Start strong and stay healthy by consistently following University expectations to mitigate your risk and the risk to others; including wearing masks, maintaining social/physical distance, practicing good personal hygiene, and avoiding close contact with others outside your household. 

We also strongly encourage you to identify your social circle, create an adopted family in your residence hall, and keep yourself distanced from larger groups. The first two weeks offer many opportunities to engage and have fun while maintaining social/physical distance. Check out our event schedule and invite your close social circle to attend with you.

Commuter students who are symptomatic or who have recently been exposed to someone who has tested positive are able to receive a referral for a COVID-19 test by completing a virtual screening with our Birkam Health Center through the Healthy Dog Portal in MyFSU. Students can also search for local testing sites in Michigan:

Will the FLITE Library be open this fall?

Yes!  For more information about the library hours, the services available, and what is expected of patrons this fall, please visit

Will the Student Recreation Center be open this fall?

At this time there is an Executive Order in the State of Michigan that prohibits gyms, fitness centers, indoor pools, and recreation centers from opening. Given this, the Student Recreation Center (SRC) will not be open for indoor fitness activities when the fall semester begins and the weight room, fitness center, and pool will remain closed until such time as the State permits gyms to open.

The SRC will be open for academic classes scheduled within the facility and as a space for students to study, rest between classes, and gather in groups of 10 or less. Strict adherence to group limits of 10 or fewer people with face coverings and distancing will be required. The University Recreation Center Team will be delivering a wide variety of virtual and outdoor events and activities. Club Sports will be permitted to operate virtually and hold practices outdoors with permission from UREC and strict adherence to COVID-19 health and safety guidelines.

I have heard that Universities across the country are suspending students who attend large parties and/or for not following other health and safety guidelines, how will Ferris State respond?

The University will respond swiftly and significantly to alleged violations that put the health and safety of anyone in our community at risk.  Disciplinary responses may include formal actions up to and including dismissal from the University.

Is there still an opportunity to apply for CARES Grants to assist with financial hardships experienced in the spring related to COVID-19?

CARES grants from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund are available to students who were enrolled in Spring 2020 and incurred expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19 through 11:59 PM on Monday, August 31st. Examples of eligible expenses for CARES funding include medical; food; housing; utility and technology expenses; relocation costs to return home; unexpected childcare; course materials; and other unexpected expenses.

Students who meet the eligibility requirements and have not previously applied are encouraged to apply for the emergency grants. At this time eligible students can receive up to $400 (one time). More information and a link to the application is located here  Information regarding fall 2020 CARES Grants will be shared in early September.

For answers to other frequently asked questions, visit our student specific FAQ. 

I deeply appreciate the cooperation and flexibility demonstrated by our students checking in today.  Together we can acknowledge that this time in our history continues to require our patience, adaptability, and diligence. Thank you for being patient with yourself and us.    

Take good care, act consistent with our Bulldog values, and stay safe so we can all move #FerrisForwardTogether.

Joy N. Pulsifer,
Dean of Student Life


Access comprehensive information about student engagement opportunities, academic resources, and how to connect with our many Registered Student Organizations in our Ferris Forward Together Student Reengagement Guide.

Please continue to check your email for updates and frequently visit the University’s COVID-19 webpage for updated information.  You may also continue to direct other unanswered questions to the appropriate contact listed below:

  • For academic questions, contact your advisor or your academic dean's office:
    • College of Arts, Sciences and Education: 231-591-3660
    • College of Business: 231-591-2420
    • College of Engineering Technology: 231-591-2890
    • College of Health Professions: 231-591-2270
    • College of Pharmacy: 231-591-2254
    • College of Optometry: 231-591-3706
    • Retention & Student Success: 231-591-2360
    • Kendall College of Art and Design: 616-259-1203
    • Statewide location email contact info is located at:
    • If you are unable to reach your advisor, please contact your College (numbers above) or [email protected]

  • For housing & dining questions, please email [email protected]
  • For questions about your financial aid, please email Financial Aid at [email protected]
  • For questions related to a reasonable accommodation, please email Educational Counseling & Disabilities Services at [email protected] or for students at Kendall College of Art & Design, please email Marie Yowtz at [email protected]