What Does College Look Like in Fall 2020?

September 4, 2020

Students in the Bowl

What’s new with the application process?

  • We do not want cost to get in the way for students to apply to Millsaps. That’s why our application is free! We accept either the Common Application or the Millsaps application (with no preference). We want to get to know a little more about you, so we do require an essay.
  • We are test-optional for the 2020–21 application cycle. We do not want the stress of registering for and taking the ACT or SAT to present an undue burden to students this year. If a student chooses not to have his or her test scores considered, we simply require that they submit an official high school transcript instead of the usual self-reported GPA and test scores.
  • We will be taking an even more holistic view of students and their accomplishments and experience in high school.
  • Also, the deposit is refundable until the May 1st deadline, so we encourage students to apply and deposit early!

How has the Millsaps experience changed?

The challenges of a global pandemic present themselves every day, and we have to be ready to meet them. At Millsaps, we have implemented safety protocols in an effort to reduce the risk associated with the spread of COVID-19. These include a requirement to wear masks while on campus and around others. These protocols are detailed in the college’s Return to Campus guidelines. Students and staff are expected to follow these guidelines.

When considering the health and safety of our Millsaps community during this pandemic, including the question of whether and how to conduct on-campus classes, we knew we had to use all the assets of a small liberal arts college, including our location on a spacious 100-acre campus in the heart of the capital city of Jackson. Small discussion-based classes with an average class size of ten students are at the heart of the Millsaps academic experience. Through close collaboration, our students build meaningful transformative relationships with their professors and classmates. Now, instead of tables and desks arranged in circles for discussion, each student has his or her own table or workspace to ensure proper social distancing. Computers are spaced out in the computer labs and in the library. Millsaps is utilizing every classroom and meeting space in our new $7 million dollar Visual Arts Center and our newly renovated Christian Center and chapel.

As we expect much from our students while they navigate the academic year in conjunction with COVID-19, we also expect much from ourselves. Our campus is plastered in signs that remind us the dos and don’ts of social distancing, mask wearing and hygiene. Our classrooms have fewer desks and multiple “do not sit” signs. We are asking our students—and each other—to sanitize desks and work areas at the end of class. We are encouraging people to enjoy our campus—while maintaining social distancing and following all applicable guidelines.

We have also increased time between classes so that students have time to sanitize their work spaces. Jackson, especially after October, is ideal for outdoor classes and we have even set up tents in and around the beautiful Bowl. Millsaps is also utilizing the #CampusClear app. The app is easy to use and provides the steps you should take if you’re experiencing symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has contracted the virus. It also provides direct links to mandatory reporting forms. Even if someone is in quarantine or isolation, we are asking them to record their symptoms daily. The app does NOT track your position or motion, but it does provide valuable confidential data to help us limit the spread of the corona virus on our campus. In case of emergency, we have designated an entire dorm for students to be able to quarantine themselves and maintain their classes online.