An Update on Housing and Dining Credits

April 9, 2020

Dear Students,


In the face of all the challenges that we are experiencing, we are encouraged by the strengthened sense of community visible in countless instances. And even as we adhere to the medical directive of “social distancing,” the connectedness that is so often visible in our in-person encounters on Locust Walk can be just as manifest as we interact with one another virtually across the globe. We hope you continue to reach out to offices operating remotely for resources and support.

We understand you have been waiting for an update on Penn’s approach to crediting housing and dining fees for the remainder of the semester. Penn has been working around the clock to support students in this challenging time, and we thank you for your patience while we determined the best approach to processing these adjustments.


If you lived in a College House

College House residents required to depart (or not return to) campus will receive a credit on their student account. The value of the credit covers March 17 to May 13 – the period of time between the official move-out date and the last day of the housing contract. This credit will be pro-rated based on each family’s contribution toward the cost of attendance.

Students granted waivers to remain in their college houses due to extenuating circumstances are not eligible for this housing credit. Students approved to stay on campus who subsequently moved out after March 17 will receive a pro-rated credit based on the day of their departure.


If you were on a Dining Plan

Students no longer able to use the dining plans they purchased for the Spring 2020 semester will receive a credit on their student account. The value is based on a student’s total number of remaining meal swipes (calculated at the cost-per-swipe of their specific plan) and any remaining Dining Dollars (at a dollar-for-dollar ratio). Students who added swipes or Dining Dollars will receive a reimbursement at the purchase price.

If students continued to use their dining plans after March 17, those accounts will not be credited.


Next Steps

This will be reflected in your May billing statement. The credit for housing and/or dining will be first applied to satisfy outstanding balances on your student account, with the remainder refunded to you via your preferred payment method in Penn.Pay.

We have been grateful to hear from some families expressing interest in donating the value of their housing and/or dining credit to support Penn’s COVID-19 emergency efforts. If you are interested in this option, you can review donation options on the Power of Penn site.

If you have questions regarding your bill or financial assistance, please contact our colleagues in Student Financial Services at If you have questions regarding housing/dining, please contact our colleagues in Residential & Hospitality Services at or

We know there are other questions that currently remain unanswered, and we are diligently working on providing those answers for you as soon as we can. We will continue to update you on next steps. In the meantime, please continue to stay safe and healthy and remember that there are a variety of Penn health and wellness resources that are open and available to you. We encourage you to join the many students who have successfully made use of them. Information on these resources can be found on the Penn Coronavirus website.



Marie Witt, Vice President, Business Services

MaryFrances McCourt, Vice President, Finance and Treasurer

Last Updated 03/31/2020 - 13:42