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Personal Concerns and Academics

It can be challenging to balance personal difficulties and academics. If you are experiencing personal difficulties, you can contact your assigned student dean for support. Students often work with their assigned dean when they are experiencing personal difficulties like family concerns, financial difficulties, death of a loved one, feeling overwhelmed, or a range of other personal challenges. 

  • Communicate directly with your professors. It is important that you keep in good, direct communication with your professors about any course requirements, especially time sensitive course requirements. Be sure to read your course syllabi, so that you are familiar with course guidelines before you experience a concern. Only your professors have authority over the requirements of their courses, but sometimes they require confirmation from a dean that you are experiencing serious difficulties. 
  • Reach out to your dean for additional support, if needed. If you need academic support related to a personal concern, you can contact your professors and your assigned dean. You do not need to share all of the details of your personal concern with your professors, but you can let them know that you are experiencing a serious personal concern and that you have also reached out to your dean for support. As you balance your personal concerns and your academics, it can be helpful for you to talk with a dean to map out a plan for next steps. 
  • With urgent concerns at night, on weekends, or over breaks, you can reach on-call staff (including dean's staff) by contacting Public Safety (non-emergency: 610-328-8281; emergency 610-328-8333).

Bereavement Support

Loss can be painful to process, and there are many people to support you following the death of a loved one. 

  • For counseling support, contact CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services).
  • For individual and group resources in processing loss, contact the Religious and Spiritual Life Advisors.
  • For academic support, contact your assigned student dean. Your dean can help you connect with additional forms of support, and help coordinate with your professors if you need to leave campus or be away from classes to mourn. Class attendance expectations are determined by each professor for their courses.

For further resources outside of the Swarthmore Community, please see these other Grief and Loss resources.
For information on health concerns and academics, please visit our Health Concerns and Academics website.