February Parent and Family Newsletter


Learn about upcoming events, academic dates, and important information at Rensselaer.

With the semester well underway, students have now experienced their first round of exams in most courses, and winter is just as we expect in upstate New York, cold. But, there is more daylight with each passing day, and this month will give us 29 days. Rensselaer is home to a diverse population of students, faculty, and staff. In our continuing effort to celebrate the various cultures represented at our Institution, we wanted to take some time to recognize Black History Month this February.


 In the coming weeks, there will be a host of events that highlight and celebrate Black culture at Rensselaer. Several student organizations including the Black Student Alliance (BSA), the African Student Association (ASA), the Black Graduate Student Association (BGSA), the National Society for Black Engineers (NSBE), and Alpha Phi Alpha (ΑΦΑ) have worked hard to organize these events. We encourage your students to take some time to participate in these events with an eye toward learning and a heart toward celebration.

Spring break is also around the corner. Arrangements can be made with Parking and Transportation to and from the local travel hubs. Students are permitted to stay on campus for spring break and will be receiving information from Student Living and Learning regarding break housing.  

Finally, as you likely know, the world is experiencing the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is closely monitoring developments around an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) Coronavirus first identified in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. Chinese authorities identified the new coronavirus, which has resulted in hundreds of confirmed cases in China, including cases outside Wuhan City, with additional cases being identified in a growing number of countries internationally. The first case in the United States was announced on January 21, 2020. There are ongoing investigations to learn more. We will continue to update our website as we learn more. You can read the latest official statement here.  


If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us directly via phone at (518) 276-6864 or email: parents@rpi.edu. If you ever have an emergency or safety concern, please reach out to the Department of Public Safety at (518) 276-6656.  



Maria Roberts

Associate Dean, First-Year Experience


2020 Influenza Season

Since the beginning of this semester, we have noted five times the number (for mid-influenza season) of our usual cases of influenza among the student body at Rensselaer. All students with symptoms of the flu should arrange an appointment with medical staff at the Student Health Center. There, they will be examined for influenza. All appointments are free to Rensselaer students.

Visit the Student Health Center Website »


DotCIO Warning Announcement

We have received several reports of people receiving suspicious email appearing to be a continuation of an email conversation with the Rensselaer Bursar’s Office, bursar@rpi.edu. We would like to reinforce the good practice of not clicking on any unknown links, since it could

lead to a malicious site.

DoT CIO Warning Announcement »


Celebrating Black History Month

Several events are planned annually to celebrate Black History Month on campus. Most notably, the Black Student Alliance (BSA) Fashion Show is always a sellout campus favorite. Rensselaer is committed to celebrating the heritage of our black

students and their organizations.

Learn more about Multicultural Affairs »


Now Recruiting Student Leaders: Deadline Extended

The Office of the First-Year Experience is still hiring Student Orientation (SO) Advisers for the summer and fall of 2020. Please encourage your student to apply if they wish to mentor first-year students with their transition to Rensselaer.

Student Orientation Advisers »


Preparing for Off-Campus Living

Now is the time that the landlords start to advertise for the 2020-2021 academic year. Before your student signs a lease, they need to know what that lease commits them to as it is a legal document unrelated to the Institution. Encourage your student to do thorough research about this option.

For more information, visit the Off-Campus Commons »


Upcoming Events/Workshops »


The African Students Association Presents: "Oga Bolaji" Film Screening 

Friday, February 21

Rensselaer Union, Mother's


For details about upcoming events at Rensselaer, visit the Events Calendar.


Academic Dates »

February 17

No classes, President's Day


March 9-13

Spring Break  


For a full list of academic dates, visit the Academic Calendar for details.