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Student FAQs

Frequently asked questions

ESU has been working on plans to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 to our ESU community. Below are FAQs addressing a number of key concerns regarding students. As common questions arise in your area, please share those with Human Resources by email to and we will add them to the list as appropriate.

Check the FAQ regularly.

Thank you for your patience, flexibility, and commitment during these challenging times.

Still have questions?

If you still have questions after reading the FAQ below, please fill out the form below to ask your question.

Student General Questions

How long will remote classes be?

Emporia State will use remote learning for classes through the end of the spring 2020 semester.

Is there a possibility of the entire university closing down?

The COVID-19 pandemic remains a fluid situation. The Executive Policy Group is using guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Kansas Department of Health and Environment and other institutions to inform decisions in regards to the safety and security of the ESU campus community.

Is there a possibility of classes being canceled completely for the rest of the semester, even remote classes?

The COVID-19 pandemic remains a fluid situation. The Executive Policy Group is using guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Kansas Department of Health and Environment and other institutions to inform decisions in regards to the safety and security of the ESU campus community.

What do I do if I have performance-based or lab classes?

For performance-based or lab-based courses, you will receive communication from your instructors about how each of your courses will operate. Students will be expected to complete course requirements and produce the same quality of work just as would be expected in a classroom setting. Regardless of how courses are structured for the remainder of the year, you will receive full credit for completed courses, provided you meet your instructor’s class requirements.

Since we aren’t meeting in person any more, do our courses count as regular full credit courses?

Regardless of how courses are structured for the remainder of the year, you will receive full credit for completed courses, provided you meet your instructor’s class requirements.

What do I do for student teaching/field work/clinicals?

Students in these positions that are external to the ESU campus should follow the guidance of the academic department responsible for the placement. Additionally, The Teachers College shared information specifically about student teaching. You can find it here.

Who can I talk to about the instruction of my online class?

You will receive communication from your instructors about how each of your courses will operate. You can direct questions to your instructor first. You may also reach out to the chair of the department in which the course is being offered.

If you need help with the technology, please contact the IT Help Desk. Other resources on campus that can help you be successful in remote classes include ACES and the ESU librarians.

Who can I talk to about accessibility in my online courses?

If the accessibility issue is technology-related, please contact the IT Help Desk. You might also find helpful resources and answers on the Learn Anywhere website.

If you have a documented disability, please contact the Student Accessibility and Support Services Office (SASS).

For on-line classes, what if I don’t have a stable source of internet or WiFi in my home?

Explore options where you are. Many community libraries offer free internet access. Some, however, are restricting the hours they are open to reduce the spread of COVID-19, so you need to call them to find out.

Many Internet Service Providers and Cellular Providers are offering free and reduced rate options. A continually updated list is being compiled here. There are options found in the Emporia, Kansas City area, Burlington, Gridley, Lebo, LeRoy, Madison, New Strawn and Waverly.

What resources are available to help me, as a student, transition to online coursework?

Information Technology has worked hard to develop and outline information for students about moving to remote learning. This communication is a great starting point and will point you to other resources.

Can my RSO still meet?

Yes! RSOs can meet virtually. Campus events, meetings and programming are cancelled until further notice. Classrooms, meeting spaces or other venues on campus are not available for the remainder of the semester.

Can I still study in the library or in other buildings on campus?

Except for the Student Wellness Center, all buildings on campus are closed. Library staff are available between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. seven days a week to provide reference services for research help and answer library questions. Contact through:

Phone: 620-341-5207


Zoom: (no prior appointment needed; just click on the Zoom link during the hours listed above.)

Should I enroll for next semester?

Yes. Definitely get enrolled as soon as you can. There are always more class options early in the enrollment period. Reach out to your advisor. If you have any difficulties, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Shelly Gehrke at or Registration at or (620) 341-5211.

Will I be able to enroll in next semester classes if there is a hold on my account?

Your faculty advisor is still available to help you enroll and can help you navigate any holds you may have. Some holds will let you enroll and some holds will not. Students can look in Hornet 365 at their Student Account Center to view their holds and learn if the hold prevents just receiving transcripts or if it also prevents registration. You can also learn who to contact to have the hold released. If you have any questions, contact Registration or the Student Advising Center at or (620) 341-5421.

CARES Act Student Funds

When + How Do I receive designated CARES Act funds allocated to students?

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress and signed into law to provide economic relief from COVID-19. One section of the CARES Act established the Higher Education Emergency Relief fund and sent money to schools to use for emergency grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the pandemic.

The U.S. Department of Education then created guidelines for universities, including Emporia State University, to follow when disbursing the funds.

Visit this page for all of the details and information you need to apply for funds.

Student Basic Needs & Resources

Can I visit Corky’s Cupboard?

Yes. Corky’s Cupboard, however, has moved to the Student Wellness Center, located in 250 Southeast Morse Hall. Hours of operation: 1 to 4 p.m., Mondays. Please note, in order to continue supporting temporary food assistance to those who need it, pre-packed bags of food are available – limit one bag of food per week. Students will need to present their student ID at the front desk.

What are resources in the community that provide temporary food assistance?

Visit the Emporia Strong website to learn about emergency resources available to the community.

Do I have access to Free Legal Counseling?

Please contact the ASG contracted legal counselor Ted Hollembeak at to schedule a time. Ted will coordinate with students to schedule virtual meetings to discuss legal concerns. Please remember that the legal counselor will provide advice, but will not be representing a student in court.

What do I do if I cannot pay my rent/bills?

Specific situations caused by all the changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic response are unfortunate. Your first step would be to talk with your landlord and creditors as soon as you know there is a problem.

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has offered some protection with Executive Order 20-06, announced March 18: “I hereby direct and order all financial institutions operating in Kansas to temporarily suspend the initiation of any mortgage foreclosure efforts or judicial proceedings and commercial or residential eviction efforts or judicial proceedings until May 1, 2020.”

When you talk to your land lord and creditors, ask for consideration. Offer solutions. Can you make a smaller payment? Can you make the full payment later? Many companies are making adjustments with their customers if at all possible. They don’t know you need help unless you tell them. Don’t be ashamed to have the conversation. You are not their only tenant or customer in this situation.

Will my utilities be shut off if I miss a payment?

On March 17, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly issued Executive Order 20-05, which temporarily prohibits companies from disconnecting utilities and internet service. The directive covers all electrical, natural gas, water and telecommunications utilities as well as internet service providers who provide services to Kansas citizens.

Specifically, Evergy released this information:

Late last week, we suspended nonpayment disconnections – for both small business and residential customers.

We’re also offering:

Extended special payment options to meet your needs; and

No late fees until at least May 1.

Can I still live in the residence halls?

All residence halls are closing for the remainder of the spring semester.

What are emergency scholarships and how can I apply?

The ESU Student Foundation operates a Student Emergency Scholarship fund. More information is available online, including an application that can be completed and submitted. The ESU Student Foundation plans to meet virtually to handle applications.

Will payment plans be suspended until students have more financial security?

Emporia State is not suspending payment plans at this time. If you are having difficulty making a payment, contact Cashiering Services at 620-341-5413 to discuss your options. ESU will make every attempt to work with you during this situation. Please note, due to limited staff on-site, your phone call may go to voice mail but we will return calls as soon as possible.

Will I be charged a late fee if I am unable to pay on my payment plan?

If you are unable to make a timely payment, notify Cashiering Services (620-341-5413) to work out a new payment plan. If you do not contact our office, the late fee(s) will be charged. Please note, due to limited staff on-site, your phone call may go to voice mail but we will return calls as soon as possible.

What companies are offering aid for students (i.e. Uhaul, Enterprise etc.)

So far, this is the information we have found. If you do have a special need, check with your preferred vendors, either on their websites or their social media for updated information.

U-Haul is offering 30 days of free self-storage to anyone with a college ID to aid college students who were forced to move out of dorms and head back to their hometown to start online classes. The offer is based on availability at your local U-Haul owned and operated facility.

Rental cars: Both Hertz and Enterprise have announced changes to their policies. Most importantly, they are lowering the minimum age to rent to 18 to help college students be able to travel home.

On-Campus Student Employment

Should I report to work?

Unless you have been asked by your supervisor to return to work, do not come to work.

Some student positions are mission critical for particular departments. With Vice President approval, your supervisor may reach out to you and ask if you are willing to return to work. You are free to make the decision to return to work or not, depending upon your specific situation. If you are in a student position identified as mission critical and agree to return to work, do not report to work if:

You have been advised to self-isolate because of travel or potential exposure.

You or a family member living with you have chronic health conditions or are in another at-risk group considered more susceptible to complications associated with COVID-19.

You are sick.

Again, do not come to work if you have not been directed to do so by your supervisor.

What should I do if I am a mission critical employee and cannot come to work?

Contact your supervisor as soon as possible to advise them that you are unable to come in. If you are unable to work, you will be paid as if you were not working in a mission critical position.

Will I be paid even if I cannot go to work?

You will receive your regularly scheduled paycheck for the pay period ending March 7, this coming Friday, March 20. Student employees who worked over spring break will be paid for the hours that they worked during spring break (March 8 – March 14).

Beginning March 15, you will receive pay for the regularly scheduled hours you are not working. You will be paid for these hours through the end of the semester, or until the end of your appointment period if that is prior to the end of the semester.


Will graduation be cancelled?

Following guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has prohibited all public or private mass gathering of 50 or more people into May. Because of this, Emporia State will cancel all commencement ceremonies scheduled for May 8 and 9. This includes the nurse pinning ceremony.

We invite May 2020 graduates back to Emporia during the December 2020 commencement activities on December 11 and 12, 2020.

If I already bought my cap and gown for graduation, who do I work with to get a refund?

This information is from Oak Hall Cap & Gown, the company that sells regalia for Emporia State commencement ceremonies:

If you ordered your regalia as Ship to Home and do not want it — As long as the package containing the regalia has not been opened, we will refund your order (minus shipping and handling) as long as we receive it back within 30 days of shipment. Return to:

Oak Hall Cap & Gown

3812 Blue Ridge Drive

Roanoke, VA 24018

If you ordered for Bookstore Pick Up — Your order will automatically be cancelled, and payment refunded in the near future. If you still want regalia, you will need to place a new order for Ship to Home:

Should graduates still order cap and gowns?

This decision is completely up to you. We will not be offering the formal commencement ceremony in May in which you walk across the stage. Oak Hall Cap & Gown, the company that supplies ESU regalia, says that some students still choose to order regalia and wear it to celebrations with their families and friends. If you want to order, please see instructions immediately above.

I qualify for honor cords. May I still get them?

We are working to coordinate this. We will send information to students who are eligible for cords.

ASG Specifics

Can I still access menstrual products from the Menstrual Product Initiative?

To continue supporting the Menstrual Product Initiative, products will be available along with pre-packaged food at the Student Wellness Center, 250 Southeast Morse Hall, between 1 and 4 p.m. Mondays. Students will need to present their student ID at the front desk.

What do Senate meetings look like for the remainder of the semester?

The open Senate meeting on March 26 has been cancelled. Our remaining meetings of the semester (April 9 and April 23) will be held virtually. We will send out a link as the date approaches for those who would like to watch. Your Senators will remain in office until the session closes on April 23. You can find your representatives here.

How is the 2020-2021 allocation process going to be finished?

SB 20042 will be voted on during the virtual Senate meeting on April 9th. RSO representation will not be required. The President and Treasurer of the organization will be notified through email on final decisions.

What happens with re-registration and community service hours?

The re-registration process will remain the same. The form will be online on Hornet Life beginning April 6 and closes April 17 at 5pm. The community service requirement for this year has been waived. All submitted and approved hours will be rolled over into next academic year.

What if an RSO was in the process of becoming recognized; what is the process now?

RSOs that have previously started the process to become recognized must complete and turn in the remaining paperwork to the Senate Operations Committee Chair by 5:00PM on April 3 to complete the process within this session of ASG. Failure to meet this deadline will result in reapplying in the fall.

What if an RSO had travel plans for later this semester?

In alignment with ESU’s preventative approach, effective immediately all university-sponsored domestic and international business-related travel is to be discontinued until further notice. If your RSO had travel plans in notice please reach out to Anna Dragoo at for specific information for your travel postponement or cancellation plans.

Are RSOs going to be able to have their allocations from this year rolled over into next year?

Due to the nature of the allocation process and guidelines, unused allocations will be returned to ASG to be used in future allocation processes.

Is a Reserve Fund Request an option for an RSO?

All unused allocations from the 2019-2020 get reallocated into the reserve account for reserve fund requests. RSOs may begin this process in the fall.

Will the Love Your Campus Mini Grants still be distributed?

Funds may be rolled over into next school year to complete projects. Treasurer Anderson will reach out to awardees with more specific information.

What does this mean for the Educational Opportunity Fund & James Hirsch Scholarship?

The selection committees will meet virtually and recipients will be contacted electronically in late April.