What to Do in an Emergency

Unexpected emergencies can have an impact on your ability to complete course work. There are Penn State World Campus systems and services in place to help you move forward.

Types of Emergencies

  • natural disaster
  • wildfire
  • severe weather
  • mass power outage
  • civil unrest
  • crimes of mass violence

Steps to Take

If you have experienced any of the types of unexpected emergencies listed on this page, you should take any steps necessary for your safety and then follow up when you are able to discuss the flexibility or support you may need for your courses.

Notify your instructors as soon as you are able.

Instructors are often willing to work with students when they reach out directly.

  • If the emergency is foreseen, such as a predicted inclement weather event, let your instructors and/or adviser know in advance.
  • Inform them that you may be without access to technology and request flexibility with regard to your course work.
  • Discuss the possibility of assignment deadline extensions, deferred grading, or alternative grading options.
  • Be mindful that requests for grading flexibility fall under the sole purview of the instructor.

Seek support.

Seek support from Student Affairs by completing our Care and Concern form if any of the following conditions apply:

  • You have health and wellness concerns resulting from the emergency.
  • You have a financial hardship resulting from the emergency.
  • You are in need of assistance initiating a conversation with your instructors regarding the emergency.
  • You have an academic concern resulting from the emergency.
  • You need to withdraw from your course work as a result of the emergency.