Student FAQs

The college is continually adding to this list of answers to frequently asked questions as plans develop to adapt to the COVID-19 public health crisis. Please note that this is a rapidly changing situation, and answers may change as new information becomes available. We have included a date and time stamp of when each answer was last updated to help you track how recently information has changed. Please continue to check back for more information.

For questions not answered here, please email either or the specific department, program, faculty member, or staff member responsible for the area. A list of general department contacts is at the bottom of the Virtual Support Center page

Topics covered here include:

Deadlines and time tables

When does summer term begin, and what will classes be like? When can I register for summer classes?

Summer term began July 6, 2021. The college will continue to offer most of its classes online and remotely, with a few hybrid courses with hands-on labs. Last updated July 9, 6:06 a.m.

What about fall term?

Fall term classes begin Monday, September 20. The fall term schedule was posted in ctcLink on April 17. Fall registration opened on May 10.

About 500 fall classes (roughly one-third of all fall class offerings) offer some on-campus component. This includes hybrid classes (taught partly on campus and partly online) as well as fully on-campus classes. Over the summer, it's possible that additional fall classes may be moved into formats that offer an on-campus component; however, any changes are dependent on updated guidance the college receives from local, state, and federal health agencies. 

The college is working on a Return to Campus plan that will take place in phases. Many student services will be available on campus in fall term, though they may have limited hours and/or staffing.  

The college will require face coverings and social distancing for all students and employees on campus during fall term. Additional safety and hygiene procedures will be observed. The college strongly recommends that all individuals who are able to be vaccinated against Covid-19 do so before visiting campus. However, the college will not require vaccination.

Last updated July 9, 6:06 a.m.


[back to top]

Academics and registration

What are classes like right now? I hear about "online" and "asynchronous" and other kinds of classes -- how do I know what kind of class I'm signing up for?

There are four types of classes you will see on the schedule for the 2021 fall term:

  • Online – Classes will be fully online and have no required synchronous* instructional components. There will be no date or time information listed in the schedule.
  • Remote – Classes will be taught online with scheduled synchronous* instruction components.  Date and time information will be included to indicate when synchronous components will occur. Remote teaching is different from an online class because an online class has no required meetings scheduled at a particular time. 
  • Hybrid – These classes combine an online component with required in-person class sessions in a physical classroom. Date, time, and campus location information will be included on the schedule.  
  • Web-Enhanced – These are the more-traditional "face-to-face" classes. While some activities or reading may be done online, the class meets regularly in a physical classroom at the days and times listed in the class schedule.

To find classes in any of these modalities, search the Class Schedule in ctcLink and select your preference using the Instruction Mode search filter option.

*For an explanation of the terms "synchronous" and "asynchronous," scroll down to the answer below. 

For help with using online tools, please contact

Last updated 7/9/21 10:37 a.m.

I keep getting emails that talk about "synchronous" classes and "asynchronous" classes. What do those two terms mean?

The terms synchronous and asynchronous describe two formats of online learning.

Synchronous  ("same time") classes operate much like a traditional face-to-face class. Students meet at an assigned time and day through an online meeting tool like Zoom, while their professor conducts classroom activities. These classes are called "synchronous" because everyone needs to gather together at the same time to attend class--they just do it remotely instead of in a physical classroom. Schoolwork--assignments, quizzes, etc.--are submitted through Canvas or another web-based tool. You can still "meet" with your professor, but those meetings will be conducted through email, Zoom, phone, or other remote communication system. If your class is listed in MyClark as having specific class times and days, it is probably synchronous.

Asynchronous  ("not the same time") classes are built inside an online learning tool like Canvas. They're called "asynchronous" because students can check into the online class at different times to complete the work--they don't all have to be present together to learn. Your professor may still offer lectures, but they'll be recorded and accessible as online videos. Or there could be no lectures, and instead a library of material to review and/or a series of activities to complete. Class discussion takes place online and students can comment on each other’s posts, similar to the way people comment on posts in many social media platforms--except, of course, that these are academic discussions so they're a bit more formal. (No memes or "textspeak," please!) Professors might hold "office hours" online, or they might set up other online ways for you to connect with them. Asynchronous classes offer more flexibility for those with challenging schedules, but you will still need to complete work by set due dates. Your class syllabus will give you more details about how the class is structured. If your class is listed in MyClark as just "ARR," with no class times or days listed, it is probably asynchronous.

For more information about online learning, visit our eLearning web areaLast updated 1/8/21  2:12 p.m

How do I ask questions about a specific class and how it will run?

Access your current class schedule in MyClark for the most up-to-date information. For questions about your class that are not answered in MyClark, your Canvas account, or your student email, you can email the professor directly. Use our Staff and Faculty Directory to find their contact information. Last updated 1/8/21 10:03 a.m.

How will internships/externships work? Are those all canceled while the college is in remote operations? If so, how does that affect my financial aid and my ability to graduate on time?

Please contact your instructor, department chair, or dean for guidance pertaining to your program of study. Each program is working within accreditation requirements, state requirements, and workforce needs. Students are encouraged to visit the Internship/Co-op webpage for additional guidance. And if you need any additional assistance please contact Career Services for support in developing a plan and identifying opportunities. Last updated 2/11/21 1:55 p.m.

How do I get help registering for classes online?

While the physical campus is closed to the public, staff are available by email and zoom.  Click on our Virtual Assistance Center to talk to a person.

Last updated 1/8/21 8:43 a.m.


[ back to top ]

Health and safety

Are vaccines required to attend Clark College?

Clark College strongly encourages all students to be fully vaccinated if they are able to do so. This is the best way to protect not just your own health and safety, but the health and safety of our whole community. However, the college does not require vaccinations. Last updated 7/19/21

Are face coverings (masks) required at Clark College? What if I'm fully vaccinated?

For the time being, everyone on campus must wear an appropriate face covering and observe social distancing requirements, which is now 3 feet in most circumstances.This policy (and the exact definition of safe social distancing) may change as fall term progresses, based on evolving guidance from the state. Last updated 7/19/21

Do I have to wear a face covering outdoors?

The Washington State Secretary of Health's Order on Face Coverings states that face coverings do not need to be worn outdoors, with the following qualification: "People who are not fully vaccinated against Covid-19 are encouraged to wear face coverings in crowded outdoor settings, such as sporting events, fairs, parades, concerts, and similar settings where there is decreased ability to consistently maintain physical distance between non-household members."

Last updated 7/19/21

Why isn't Clark College requiring vaccination against Covid-19?

Clark College strongly encourages everyone coming to its physical locations to be fully vaccinated, if they are able to do so.

However, as an open-admissions institution, Clark College is committed to removing barriers to higher education, economic opportunity, and the services that we provide. Vaccination requirements create a barrier to accessing the college’s resources and programs, and that goes against our core values and mission.  

Furthermore, we recognize the cultural, historical, and systemic forces that have led to lower vaccination rates among our BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color), immigrant, and refugee communities—and we recognize that requiring vaccinations would lead to inequitable access to our campus.  

Last updated 7/19/21

Why is Clark College requiring everyone to wear face coverings, even the fully vaccinated? 

  • We are complying with Gov. Jay Inslee’s proclamation on higher education. This proclamation directs any college that is not requiring full vaccination to comply with the Secretary of Health’s face covering order and to maintain social distancing (generally, 3 feet) in indoor settings.  
  • As of July 14*, only 56% of Clark County residents age 16 or over are fully vaccinated, which is still below state targets. 
  • We have children and students under 18 on campus, and certain programs at our college—such as Child & Family Studies—must follow heightened safety protocols beyond what is laid out in the Governor’s proclamation for higher education.  
  • The Governor’s proclamation was released on June 30 and has already been revised twice, so this guidance may evolve further in the future. Clark College will continue to track changes to the guidance and adapt its policies and procedures accordingly. 

*This was the most recent data available on July 19, 2021, when this decision was announced. Updated vaccination rates can be found at the Clark County Department of Health's website.

Last updated 7/19/21

Why isn’t Clark College just fully re-opening? Lots of other places around the state are. 

It’s true that many businesses are reopening without mitigation protocols like face coverings and social distancing. However, Clark College is not a business; it is an institution of higher education. There are different regulations covering higher education than private businesses. 

We want to make sure our return to on-site operations is done in a thoughtful way that keeps the health and safety of our whole community at topmost priority, while still maintaining as full access as possible to our services for diverse communities. We believe a gradual, phased-in approach most effectively meets this need. 

Last updated 7/19/21

What is the college doing to ensure that I will be safe when I come to campus?

Clark College is working closely with state agencies and local public health officials to ensure that its practices align with current health directives. It's important to understand that these directives continue to change, as health experts learn more about COVID-19 and how it is transmitted. Because of this, our practices will change in response to new information and developments.

Please note: The following information applies to 2021 summer term classes. Procedures will be changing for fall term and updates will be published on this page by the end of July 2021. Likewise, updates to this page over the summer will provide additional information about how the college will be maintaining its physical spaces to increase health and safety.

Currently, the college is offering in-person labs for those classes where instruction cannot be done 100 percent remotely. For those classes, students should received guidance via email from their professors. For all in-person labs, the following precautions are required:

  • Each student must fill out an online health screening questionnaire before attending a lab session.
  • Each student must bring their Student ID card with them to each campus visit.
  • Each student must wear a mask that adequately covers their nose and mouth while on campus. If a student does not have a mask, the college will provide one.

Depending on the program, additional safety precautions may include:

  • Limiting the number of students physically present in a lab at one time
  • Requiring the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Maintaining physical distance between all inviduals in a lab setting
  • Sanitizing equipment between uses

Last updated 7/19/21

Do I have to fill out an online health screening questionnaire before every single lab session I attend, or just once at the beginning of the term? Are there any other things I am required to do to attend a lab?

All students are required to fill out an online health questionnaire before each time they come to campus. People's health status can change and the college needs to be sure that it is still safe for you to come to campus.

All students are required to bring their Clark College Student ID card with them for each visit to campus.

All students are required to wear a face covering that adequately covers their nose and mouth while they are on campus. If you do not have a mask, the college will provide you with one.

If your program has other specific requirements for attending labs, they will be communicated to you via email by your professor. Last updated 1/8/21 10:46 a.m.

I’m a student in a program that has on-campus classes, but I am not ready or able to return to campus. What are my options? 

Many courses offered by the college will include sections that are 100% online. 

If your program requires on-campus classes, please contact Disability Support Services to discuss what options may be available to you. 

Student services such as Advising, Enrollment Services, Financial Aid and more will continue to be available through our Virtual Support Center.   

Last updated 7/19/21


[back to top]

Financial Questions

When will my financial aid money be available for school?

One week prior to the start of the term, the Financial Aid Office will begin the process of disbursing funds to students who have applied for and have been approved for financial aid - including scholarships, loans and grants. Please note: there have been some delays to the disbursement of federal financial aid in the 2021 summer term. All aid should be disbursed by the end of the first week of the term.

Financial aid funds will be applied to the student’s account to pay tuition and fees and any remaining amount will be disbursed to the student through BankMobile. You will receive a notification regarding BankMobile set up once your file has been reviewed.  

Students should go to the ctcLink student homepage (MyClark) to see if they have received a financial aid award notification.

Please be aware that the financial aid process takes time. Students should continue to monitor their preferred email for communication from our office and/or for an award notification. Last updated  7/6/21 11:14 a.m.

I need help paying for living expenses, what are my resources?

Clark College has developed a list of financial resources for students and community members under the “Resources” tab of its Financial Wellness page. These include emergency grants to help with living expenses.

To see if you qualify for SNAP (and a variety of other resources including Food, Cash, Child Care, Long-Term Care, and Medicare Savings Programs) log onto and click "See If I Qualify."

The Penguin Pantry is providing pre-packaged boxes of groceries to students by appointment only. Visit the Penguin Pantry web page for information on how to request a box.
Last updated 1/8/21 7:12 a.m.

I need help paying for college, what are my resources?

Clark College has several options for you to consider in paying for school including grants and scholarships that don't have to be paid back.

Last updated  1/8/21 12:48 p.m.

I'm a student veteran. Who can help me?

Our Veterans Resource Center is a great resource for student veterans as well as students who are the immediate family members of service members. Learn more about how to contact them during remote operations in the Services section of this FAQ.

If you need emergency food or housing resources contact Clark County Veterans Assistance Center

Last updated 1/8/21 11:35 a.m.

With classes online, I can't afford Wi-Fi at home. What do I do?

To apply for a Wi-Fi hotspot for in-home use, please email Clark currently offers 100 hotspots through this program, so you may want to explore other options (see below) in case all hotspots are spoken for.

  • Comcast is offering two months of free internet to qualified individuals.
  • If you have XFINITY Wi-Fi, they provide hotspots for free.
  • AT&T hotspots and Public Wi-Fi available
  • Lifeline Federal phone and internet program
  • The college provides free Wi-Fi to students in the Orange 2 parking lot on the main campus. Visit for maps and directions.

See the Technology section of this FAQ for more information. Last updated  7/6/21 11:17 a.m.

Why is Clark charging the same tuition when the campus isn't open?

Clark College's tuition is set by the Washington State Legislature, as is the tuition rate of every community and technical college in the state. Last updated 1/8/21 8:08 a.m.

Do I still have to pay building fees, Student Life fees, and other fees, if I'm not coming onto the college campus?

Yes. Most fees are set either by the State of Washington or were voted on by Clark College students and approved by the Associated Students of Clark College (student government), so they are not negotiable.

Additionally, the fees cover the costs of expenses that the college still needs to pay during remote operations. Building fees pay for maintaining buildings, which needs to happen whether or not students are on campus. Tech fees help pay for the infrastructure for online learning, as well as for loaner laptops and wifi options for students who do not have them at home.

Student Life fees will help support the many virtual student activities that office is organizing during remote operations, as well as for services like counseling, free legal advice, the Penguin Pantry, and child care. Last updated 1/8/21 7:08 a.m.


[ back to top ]


I don't have access to a computer at home or access to the Internet. How will I be able to take classes online?

To apply for a laptop or Wi-Fi hotspot for in-home use, please email Clark makes available loaner lap-tops to students.

The college also has one sanitized computer lab open by appointment only. Visit the Computer Lab Appointments page to set up an appointment. 

If you have a computer but no Internet and have not yet received a hotspot, another option is to bring your computer to the Orange 2 parking lot, where the college has free wifi available to students. See next question below for additional details.

Other possible options include:

Last updated 1/8/21 11:20 a.m.

Is there Wi-Fi on the college campus I can use?

Students can use the Wi-Fi hotspot set up in the Orange 2 parking lot on the east side of the main campus near the corner of McLoughlin Blvd. and Reserve St. To comply with state orders, the buildings are closed. Students won’t be able to use restrooms, but this gives an alternative for those who need to get online for now. Last updated 1/8/21

I'm nervous about taking classes online. How can I learn more about online learning?

Don't worry, online learning is probably going to feel more familiar to you than you realize. Visit our Introduction to eLearning page to get yourself familiar with some of the key concepts, and check out the orientation to Canvas, list of student resources, and other tools listed on that page. Last updated 1/8/21 12:47 p.m.

How do I learn more about how to use Canvas?

Try visiting our Canvas Basics page for information on how to get started, video tutorials, and more. Last updated 1/8/21 6:14 a.m.

Who do I talk to if I need help with technology?

Our TechHub staff can help you log into your student accounts, troubleshoot access issues, and help you navigate MyClark. Staff are currently working remotely. You can email them at  and someone will reach back to you as soon as possible. You can also leave a voicemail by calling 360-992-2010. Please make sure to state your name and a callback number in your voicemail. 1/8/21 6:20 a.m.

[ back to top ]

Events and activities

Will this affect an event I was planning on attending at Clark College?

Most Clark College events have been moved to remote formats. However, the college is beginning to hold a limited number of on-campus events. Please check the event's description details to understand that event's format. Last updated 7/6/21 11:22 a.m.

What about athletics?

College athletics will return to play in fall term. The college is working with the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) to finalize our plan for doing so safely. Visit the Clark Penguins website for more information. Last updated 7/19/21 11:30 a.m.

Can clubs continue to meet?

Clubs can continue virtual activities, but probably most club activities will remain in virtual formats through the 2021 fall term. For questions about a specific activity or suggestions of free options to create online group meetings, please contact Last updated 7/6/21 11:24 a.m.

[ back to top ]


Please note that the information below applies to the 2021 summer term. Service hours, locations, and practices will change in the 2021 fall term as many services return to at least partial on-site operations. Updates will be posted to this FAQ over the summer as plans develop.

I need help enrolling. How do I do that if college offices are mostly closed?

While the physical campus is closed to the public, staff are available by email and zoom.  Click on our  Virtual Assistance Center to talk to a person. If you prefer, a  list of department contact information is at the bottom of the Campus Contacts pageLast updated 1/8/21 4:05 p.m.

Is Advising available? If so, how?

While the physical campus is closed to the public, staff are available by email and Zoom.  Click on our  Virtual Assistance Center to talk to a person. If you prefer, a  list of department contact information is at the bottom of the  Campus Contacts page.

Is the Bookstore open?

The Bookstore is open online for appointments only.

Information about alternative rental return methods, as well as Bookstore services during remote operation, are available on its websiteLast updated 2/11/21 1:59 p.m.

Is Career Services still open?

Career Services staff continue to serve students remotely through phone, email, and Zoom conferencing.  Visit our Career Services website for recently updated information about financial resources, rapid hiring opportunities, working remotely off campus, your student job,  virtual Student Success Workshop, and our service options. Last updated 1/8/21 1:32 p.m.

Is Child & Family Studies still offering child care on campus?

Child & Family Studies continues to offer child care during the pandemic, though with reduced capacity and increased safety protocols in place. These include:

  • health check-in stations
  • temperature checks
  • masks for adults and children 5 and over
  • social distancing
  • reduced operating hours (8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. during summer term, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. during fall term)

For current information on openings and available spaces, please contact Tracy Eyler at Child and Family Studies at or call 360-992-2393.

Due to reduced classroom sizes per public health guidelines, CFS has limited availability. 

Last updated 7/13/21 9:03 a.m.

Are the computer labs open?

The college is keeping one sanitized computer lab open by appointment only. Visit this page to schedule an appointment. For more information about options for students without home computers, read the Technology section of this FAQ. Last updated 1/8/21 6:50 a.m.

Is GED testing available?

Yes, the testing center is offering GED tests at the Columbia Tech Center location at 18700 SE Mill Plain Blvd in east Vancouver. For more information go to: You will be given a link to register online. Testing center hours are Monday-Thursday 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. 

Is the Counseling and Health Center open? 

The Counseling and Health Center office is scheduling remote appointments for counseling and medical care. Please email, or call or text 360-450-3906.

You can visit during Virtual Front Desk Hours. 

If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health emergency, please call:

  • Clark County Crisis Line: 1-800-626-8137
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) | TTY: 1-800-799-4889
  • Text: HOME to 741741
  • Nacional de Prevención del Suicidio: 1-888-628-9454

Last updated 01/8/21 10:03 a.m.

How do I access Disability Support Services?

Click on our  Virtual Assistance Center to talk to a person. Students can still log into their  myDSS account online  to request accommodation letters.  Students can email for support at

Last updated 1/8/21 3:38 p.m.

Is the Fitness Center open? What about the gym?

O'Connell Sports Complex is closed while the college remains in remote operations. This includes the gym, locker rooms, training room, and Thompson Fitness Center. Last updated 1/8/21 2:42 p.m.

Are Clark College Libraries open?

Although our physical libraries are closed, many library services are still available.  

Access books and other physical resources you’ve requested through our safe pickup appointment system or by mail. To schedule a pickup appointment or arrange for mail delivery, please email Return books, CDs, and DVDs to any of the Libraries’ bookdrops. Please do not attempt to return laptops to the bookdrops. Contact staff to set up a return appointment.

Our online library is always open. Access newspapers, journals, ebooks, streaming videos, and more.

For research help, Ask a Librarian. You can use our 24/7 Chatemail, or call to leave a voicemail at 360-992-2375.

More information is available at  Clark College Libraries Current Updates. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at or call 360-992-2151.

Last updated 1/8/21 2:36 p.m.

Is the Penguin Pantry open?

The Penguin Pantry resumed service in May 2020, but things are operating differently. Instead of visiting the Pantry to select items, students can fill out a form to request a pre-packaged grocery box available for pick-up on a set date. More information is available on the Penguin Pantry web pageLast updated 1/8/21 9:18 a.m.

How can I request an official transcript?

Transcript requests are still being processed. You may order a copy of your official transcript online. Last updated 1/8/21 6:31 a.m.

 Are the tutoring centers open? 

Tutoring Services is providing online tutoring via its eTutoring platform.

  1. Live Tutoring sessions – a synchronous tutoring session via Zoom. Students meet with the tutor on a first-come, first-served basis. After logging in, students can view tutor schedules by subject area.
  2. eQuestions – an asynchronous option where students can post a question and a tutor will respond, generally within 24-48 hours. This works best for quick questions that don’t require an extended conversation.
  3. Online Writing Lab – an asynchronous option where students can upload a draft of their paper, along with specific questions and concerns. A tutor will provide written feedback (a summary letter and comments embedded in the draft), usually within a day or two. Links to relevant resources are also provided.

All Canvas shells have a link to the eTutoring web page. Students who have trouble logging in can email Last updated 1/8/21 1:16 p.m.

Is the Veterans Resource Center open?

The Veterans Resource Center is currently operating remotely. Students should communicate with VRC staff via email or phone:

  • Email us your questions at
  • Call us at 360.992.2073 during our hours of operation. M-TH, 8am-5pm; Friday-closed.
  • By appointment only if it is necessary for you to come on campus.

Submitting documents is possible by these methods:

  • Drop-off at the drop-box in Front of  Veterans Resource Center, Penguin Union Building
  • Mail: 1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA 98663 (Attn: Veterans Resource Center)
  • Fax: 360-992-2896

If you have any additional questions please contact us at

Due to the increased volume of inquiries as we move toward alternative methods of service, please know that we will do our best to respond within 2-3 business days to your email.

Last updated 1/8/21 2:31 p.m.

[ back to top ]

Page last updated on July 19, 2021.