Frequently Asked Questions
Choosing what college to attend is a big decision. And comes with a lot of really great questions! Let’s answer some of the top questions we receive from new students and families.
Is my scholarship good all 4 years?
Your merit scholarship is renewable for all 4 years as long as you maintain full time status, good academic standing, and there are no changes in your cost of attendance (changes made to your FAFSA, housing status, etc.). There is nothing you need to do to receive your scholarship each year; it automatically renews.
What do I have to do to get my scholarship and/or grant every year?
Your merit scholarship automatically renews as long as you remain a full time student, maintain good academic standing, and your cost of attendance does not change. Grants are associated with your FAFSA, so don’t forget to refile the FAFSA each year to maintain that aid. Grants are based on financial information on your FAFSA, so if that information changes it can affect your grant.
What is an outside scholarship and how do I find one?
An outside scholarship is simply a scholarship that comes from outside the school or the government. A student must initiate applications for outside scholarships.
There are many resources available for additional outside scholarships. Touching base with your school counselor is a great way to see what your school and community may offer. Local rotary clubs, religious institutions, and parent employers may also have scholarship opportunities.
We do provide a list of some scholarships, as well as recommendations for scholarship databases on our website.
I applied as a resident student, but now I am thinking of being a commuter (or vice versa). How will this affect my financial aid?
Changing your housing status will therefore change your cost of attendance, which will affect your financial aid. Your financial aid counselor can help map out your various scenarios. Find your financial aid counselor in your applicant portal, under the financial aid tab.
I have questions about my financial aid. How do I get in contact with someone?
Each student has their own dedicated financial aid counselor. You can find your financial aid counselor in your applicant portal, under the financial aid tab. We also offer virtual one on one financial aid consultations for more in-depth conversations, covering topics such as loan options, understanding your financial aid package, direct vs. indirect costs, and more.
What will housing look like for Fall 2021?
Next year’s housing options will be decided based on COVID-19 social distancing and safety guidelines. We’ll be sure to keep in touch as these details are firmed up.
With the plan for Fall 2021 classes to be fully in-person, residential life on campus will also return to a more normal experience, including housing for students living on campus.
What will my dorm be like?
Freshmen are typically housed in Ash Centre, Deegan Hall, or Monican Centre. Your room will have a bed, a set of drawers, a wardrobe (aka a closet), a desk and a chair. There are laundry facilities in all of these buildings, and laundry is FREE! Some buildings also have common areas featuring lounges, fireplaces, pool or ping pong tables.
How do I choose or find a roommate?
All resident students are required to fill out a housing questionnaire which asks things like: are you a morning person or night owl? Are you clean or messy? Residence Life staff will then use your answers to match you up with someone compatible. You and another freshman can also request each other on the questionnaire, and Residence Life will honor mutual requests. You do not need to find a roommate, but some ways to do so are through the class facebook group or at an admitted student event. Merrimack’s Housing Questionnaire will be available to deposited students starting in April (it will be one of your new student MackTasks!)
I am planning to live on campus. When can I move in?
Students can expect to move-in during the week of August 23rd, 2021 and start orientation this week. More information about your specific move-in day and time will be released in Summer 2021.
I’m a transfer student. Will I be living with freshmen?
We encourage you to contact Residence Life. They do their best to match you with someone in your cohort/class. You’ll also fill out a housing questionnaire as part of your new student Mack Tasks.
Who can I talk to about my specific housing needs?
Merrimack responds to requests for housing accommodations based on medical, psychological and/or disability needs. To learn more, visit the Accessibility Services website. You and your family can also attend a 30 minute Accessibility Services Information Session offered weekly.
Do I have to live on campus?
While housing is guaranteed all four years, living on campus is not required. Typically, about 15% of the freshman class are commuters and we have programming and support for you, too!
What are Living Learning Communities (LLCs) and are they required?
LLCs are encouraged but they are not required. LLCs are built-in communities in the residence halls, bringing together students who are in the same program(s) and/or who share similar interests. This makes it even easier to make friends, find study groups, and more. Our largest LLCs are iTEC for Science & Engineering majors, Honors, and Austin Scholars. While students cannot request specific buildings on their questionnaire, they can request a living learning community.
How can I get acclimated as a freshman? Who will be there to help me?
Your First Year Experience class (FYE) is designed to help you transition from high school to college. It’s taught by a professional staff/faculty member and an upperclassman student mentor. It’s pretty much your “Merrimack 101” course to get you started! You will also have the support of your personal success coach who will serve as your point person starting this summer and continuing throughout your time here.
How many classes will I take? What is a typical freshman schedule?
Students typically take 4 classes a semester for 4 credits each. A typical first year schedule includes a combination of core graduation requirements along with introductory classes in your major courses. If you are undeclared, don’t worry. The Academic Success Center works with all students to craft a first year schedule that aligns with your interests.
How hard are the classes at Merrimack? Will I be ready, especially if I’ve been doing remote or hybrid learning for the last year?
College classes are definitely different than high school, and we can’t promise they won’t come without their challenges and stressors! But don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Merrimack is known for supporting students and making sure you have the tools and support you need to be successful in your first year. From tutoring and academic advising, to faculty office hours and study groups, and so much more, we’re ready to assist you at every step of the way.
Should I take a summer course to get ready for college?
If you want to! Earn college credit while exploring a new subject or challenge yourself by taking a tough subject pass/fail. All classes are hosted online. Learn more about the course offerings and registration details.
We’ll have various summer sessions available:
- Summer I: May 24 - July 2, 2021
- Summer II: July 12 - August 20, 2021
- Summer III: May 24 - August 20, 2021
Getting to know us better
Can I visit campus?
Yes, we are open for visits! And we have a lot of special events for admitted students like you. Health and safety is our top priority, and our on-campus events are designed to provide a personalized experience. Event capacity is limited to a small number of students and family members and registration is required prior to visiting campus.
View the menu of options on our visit page which has the most up to date listing of state by state guidance.
Students outside of these states can visit if they provide proof of negative COVID test obtained 72 hours or less prior to arrival in Massachusetts. Please contact our Welcome Center directly at 978-837-5100 (#1) or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to schedule your visit.
I’m out of state, can I visit?
Yes! In accordance with the Massachusetts’ Travel Advisory, Merrimack no longer requires a negative test result from out-of-state visitors as long as visitors do not stay within Massachusetts for more than 24 hours. More information about the Massachusetts’ Travel Advisory can be found at Mass.gov website.
Please contact our Welcome Center directly at 978-837-5100 (#1) or email@example.com with any questions.
What on campus events are planned for admitted students?
We suggest you come to campus for an Admitted Student Day. These weekend visits will give you the best feel for life on campus.
If weekdays work better for you, come to an admitted student information session and campus tour. They are offered Monday - Friday at 9:30 a.m. & 1:00 p.m. and most Saturdays at 11:00 a.m and 1:00 p.m. Hear about next steps, talk with admission reps and take a tour of campus. Event capacity is limited to 18 families per time, and only one guest permitted per student. Your visit will last about 1.5 hours, and you’ll take home a brand new Merrimack t-shirt!
We also have a full menu of virtual events listed on our Admitted Student Events page. No matter what event you choose, we hope you have a chance to imagine yourself as a Merrimack student. If you have any questions about what to attend, just contact our Welcome Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-837-5100 (#1) and we can help!
Besides visiting, how can I get to know Merrimack better in order to make my decision?
Great question! We know it’s been a crazy year and the “typical” college search did not happen. While we hope you’ll visit campus (yes, we’re open!), we encourage you to:
- Look around the Merrimack website.
- Explore your major, check out the residence halls, look at the food menus.
- Join your class facebook group and meet some future classmates.
- Check out our admitted student microsite for fun content and giveaways.
- Dive into our social channels and get a feel for life as a Warrior.
- Ask your friends and family that you know went to Merrimack how their experience was.
Day to day life on campus
Can I bring my car?
Parking is available for resident students on a limited basis, and priority is given to seniors, students with disabilities and students with approved off-campus experiential-education placements. All commuter students are guaranteed on-campus parking. The parking application is also a new student MackTask and will be available in July.
Do I get an iPad? Do I need a computer?
Through Mobile Merrimack, all of our undergraduate students receive an iPad as a freshman and an updated iPad as a junior, allowing for extensive flexibility through a multitude of learning options in the classroom and online. It is your choice if you’d like to have another device, such as a laptop. All students also get over 1000 print credits a year to print out items in the library.
If you prefer to have both a computer and an iPad, Science & Engineering and Business somewhat prefer PC over Mac. For the other majors, there is no preference.
Email email@example.com with any academic tech questions. Hold off on purchasing software, as Merrimack’s Student Software Store provides academic software at discounted prices, and sometimes free of charge.
What does my meal plan include?
There are a variety of meal plans for residents and commuters. Whether it is comfort food, sushi or a quick coffee, you have a variety of food options to satisfy your appetite. Our newest options include a Majors and Minors Eatery, McQuade Café and Pizzeria, and the Merrimack Food Truck. And don’t worry, no matter if you are a Dunkin or Starbucks lover, we have both on campus for you to order your favorite brew.
Students can utilize the Bite U app to make eating on campus easier. View menus at locations across campus, customize your order and avoid lines by ordering ahead of time.
Merrimack has also partnered with GrocersPod where students can order groceries (and other essentials) from Market Basket and have them delivered to campus.
Getting ready for the fall
Once I deposit, what are my next steps?
Once you deposit, and starting in April, you will receive your Merrimack email address and more information about preparing for your first semester. View additional next steps at www.merrimack.edu/new-student.
Will classes be in person, hybrid, or remote in Fall 2021?
We are planning for Fall 2021 classes to be fully in-person. Remote-only classes will not be offered next Fall, although hybrid courses may continue because of their convenience, efficacy, and popularity with students and faculty alike.
The Academic Success Center staff will create a customized course schedule for you, and you can expect that all your classes will be held in person, unless otherwise noted.
When is Orientation?
There will be multiple New Student Orientation sessions in June and July. We are planning these to be one day and in-person. We will also include a virtual option, but want to have as many in-person opportunities as possible. These dates will be available in April. During Orientation, you will review your Fall schedule, learn about campus resources, meet other new students and become more and more comfortable at Merrimack.
When is move in and the first day of classes?
Students can expect to move-in during the week of August 23rd, 2021 and start orientation this week. More information about your specific move-in day and time will be released in Summer 2021. The orientation scheduled will also be released in Summer 2021.
Merrimack’s 2021-22 calendar is available, and the first day of classes will be Monday, August 30.
What do I need to do over the summer?
Our team will walk you through everything you need to get ready! This includes your new student checklist, called MackTasks. MackTasks is your personalized list of to-do items that you need to complete before you start classes. It lives on myMack - Merrimack’s online student portal. Due dates vary depending on the task with dates ranging between May and September for students starting in fall 2021.
How do I request accommodations?
The Office of Accessibility Services works closely with students with documented disabilities who may require reasonable accommodations with regard to academics, housing and medical-related parking. Learn more about the Accessibility Services Office and how to register for accommodations. We also host 30-minute information sessions weekly. You don’t have to wait to reach out to us. Now is the time to connect and speak with us about the services that our office provides.
How/When do I find out about transfer credits for my AP, IB, CLEP or College courses?
Please ensure your score reports or official transcripts with final grades are submitted electronically to Merrimack College by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. More information about the Transfer credit awarding process can be found on our Transfer Credit page. We encourage you to use the site to identify some of Merrimack’s current equivalencies for both College courses and Advanced credits. Once you deposit at Merrimack, you will then receive an official Transfer Credit Evaluation. This typically happens around June, before Orientation.
Something else on your mind?
Please reach out to your admission counselor! They are your go-to person and can help with any questions you may have. If you are not sure who your counselor is, you can find yours on the applicant portal. We also have Mack, our chatbot, available to answer your questions 24/7. Keep an eye out for Mack in the bottom corner of this page.