Although the deans primarily deal with matters relating to a student’s academic performance and disciplinary record, the deans can also provide support for other needs the student may have.

Transitional Issues

Adjusting to life as a college student can be challenging and stressful. A new student or student returning from a term abroad may wish to speak with a dean concerning their transition to campus life. Their dean can assist with personal adjustment, meeting new academics demands, creating a new home or cultural re-entry.

Academic Advising

The deans supplement support provided by a student's faculty adviser. Any student may schedule an appointment with their dean to consult about their academic program.

Typical topics of discussion include: graduation requirements, assistance in designing an individual major, study abroad planning, transfer credit, internships, planning for dual majors, graduate or professional school, accelerating a program of study, and making up for failed courses.

Students are encouraged to use their dean as a sounding board as they think through academic and personal goals and how best to realize them.

Academic Support

Students may request assistance with time management, study skills, academic planning, note taking, and other skills that may improve their academic achievement.

The deans also assist students who are concerned about their progress in a particular course or who need advice about the best way to approach a faculty member about a problem.

Students who are placed on academic probation are required to meet weekly with their dean.

The deans can also help students identify additional campus services, such as the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) or the Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP).

Academic Transcripts

Our office does not issue official transcripts. To order an official transcript, please visit the Registrar Office’s webpage.

For international students, there are two companies that you can use to have your credits evaluated before they can be accepted. The first is SpanTran and the second is World Education Services (WES).

Awards and Recommendations

The deans nominate students who have attained notable achievements in or out of the classroom for institutional, local, and national awards and scholarships as these opportunities arise. William Smith students may ask their dean for letters of recommendation for summer employment, graduate or professional schools, and special HWS programs.

Special Requests

A dean must be consulted about taking a voluntary withdrawal from a class, requesting an authorized withdrawal or requesting a temporary (no more than two semesters) leave of absence from the College.

Final Examination Rescheduling

Only a dean may excuse a student from her scheduled final exam or paper. Please note that a final exam may be rescheduled ONLY in the event that a student has three exams scheduled on the same day, a scheduled examination conflict, or an emergency. Family vacations or other personal scheduling conflicts do not qualify for an excused absence.

Emergency Loans

The office offers emergency loans to students who are in need of immediate cash on a short-term basis. The student should speak with Gretchen DeWall, who will determine whether an emergency exists, the amount to be loaned (up to $100) and a schedule for repayment. Loans have been granted to students needing funds for medical attention or prescription drugs, unexpected travel due to a family emergency, and similar matters.