Fall Semester Updates

Classes currently scheduled to meet in-person at the Mission campus beginning 8/26/21 will now be meeting virtually until the CIIS 9/15 vaccination requirement is active. Online learning has created the Zoom links for the virtual meetings and will send them out before classes meet.  Classes will meet virtually at the regularly scheduled times, so there will be no disruption to your schedules. Find more Community Updates.

International Students

Students Facing Financial Hardship Due to COVID-19

CIIS recognizes COVID-19 impact on our students and is committed to supporting our students as much as possible during this unprecedented time. Read more about financial resources.

Find more information about the CARES Act regarding the awarding of emergency funds to students.

We are aware that, for many faculty and students, CIIS is more than a place to come for classes. We are drawn to the sense of community and belonging. We are in the middle of an unprecedented challenge, and we are all, individually and together, striving for balance. We thank you for your patience and flexibility, and are here to support you in the ways you need.

Learn Anywhere

All students in virtual access / webinar classes will have access to the technology. Access is from a stationary computer that allows participants to listen, view, and participate in the learning environment. (Note: virtual access / webinar classes will only be used for synchronous access and will not be recorded.)

Classes will be held at regularly scheduled times on Zoom or Big Blue Button.  Links to virtual classes will be sent ten minutes before class begins. Students are expected to attend and to be attentive.

For technical questions about virtual access / webinar technology, contact Ben Cline-Suzuki, Director, Online Learning bcline@ciis.edu, 415-575-6111.

For course questions, contact your professor.

For information on the Library and resources.

Guidance for coursework

If your course is being delivered via ZOOM, please refer to instructions for participating virtual access.

Additional information can be found in Community Updates.

For information on the Library and resources.

What to do if you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed

  • Degree-seeking students should reach out to the Wellness Center – Counseling Services at counseling@ciis.edu.
  • Degree-seeking students can also utilize Wellness Center services such as Wellness Coaching, Yoga@CIIS, QiGong, and more.  Information and schedules can be found on the MyCiis Wellness Services page.
  • Neolth is a personalized digital health stress management platform founded by CIIS Somatics faculty Katherine Grill. All registered CIIS students will have access to the Neolth platform through the Wellness Center. Find more information about Neolth, including registration details.
  • Make an appointment at one of our six low-cost counseling clinics.
  • Contact SAMHSA’s Distress Helpline (related to any natural or human-caused disaster) is accessible 24/7 at 1-800-985-5990 or via text (send TALKWITHUS to 66746; Press 2 for Spanish).

Student FAQs


How long will courses be virtual? 

Courses are scheduled to be virtual through the end of Summer semester 2021. Summer Semester will continue to be virtual, except for ACTCM clinical courses and the in-person student clinic. We will continue to monitor California State directives and let everyone know if the situation changes.

Intensives currently planned for January and February 2021 will be held virtually; look for updates and information from your program about these plans.

What is CIIS doing to ensure that students receive their clinical hours for graduation? 

Students in licensure programs may continue to be concerned about their ability to complete practicum or internship hours in a timely fashion.  This includes ACTCM (MSTCM and DACM) and SPPH (MCP and PsyD) students.  As you know, our clinical programs must take direction from external regulators in order to protect students’ paths toward licensure.  We are in communication with the relevant regulatory and advocacy bodies and will update the community as we have more information regarding any changes in current situations or waivers.  

For MCP students, our MCP Field Placement Office is working with practicum sites and students to track current placements.  If you are concerned about completing your minimum required clinical hours for graduation this December, please contact the office as soon as possible (jernst@ciis.edu).  All MFT students should continue to ensure that they are making full use of client centered advocacy hours (a maximum of 75) as those will count toward their total required hours.  In mid October the office will be surveying MCP practicum students about anticipated clinical hours toward Spring 2021 graduation.  A virtual Practicum Fair will be held January 19-22, 2021.  

For ACTCM students, accreditation waivers for partial fulfillment through Virtual Grand Rounds have been extended by our accreditors and are being followed. The balance of required in person hours is being provided in our re-opened student clinic in compliance with public health directives. Practical instruction is also preceding with appropriate safety protocols and distancing. All our graduates during the pandemic have the opportunity to meet the clinical requirements of the program.

All CIIS counseling clinics continue to offer telecounseling services and are conducting phone intake assessments to accept new clients.

We are committed to allowing all students' education to proceed with as few disruptions as possible. We will do everything we can to preserve your path to your chosen career.


I’m having technical difficulties with my online class? Who do I contact? 

Please contact Online Learning at OnlineLearningSupport@ciis.edu.   

Any student who has concerns about the quality of classes should contact their Program Chair. Please also remember to use the end-of-course Evaluation to provide feedback.

For privacy reasons, we are not able to record virtual webinar-based classes.

I am having difficulty navigating the virtual course format. What resources are available to me? 

Students may book a session with a Center for Writing & Scholarship Fellow via Zoom video conference to garner additional support during this time of virtualization (log on to MYCIIS-->Academics tab-->Center for Writing and Scholarship tab-->Schedule a Writing Consultation).  Anyone who would like support to set these sessions up can email cws@ciis.edu.  

I have a health condition / disability that limits my ability to engage in virtual classes. Who should I contact for help?

Students with health conditions that impact their ability to engage in virtualized classes should reach out to the Office of Student Accessibility Services at  osas@ciis.edu

What do I do if I don’t have internet or can’t afford it?

Free or reduced fee Wi-Fi hotspots are being made available to students by carriers. Check the  CIIS COVID-19 webpage for resources. 

As of September 28, 2020, students will be able to schedule appointments for on-campus study sessions at Mission Street.  Please see the Campus Hours and Access to Student Services page for more information.

Can I access Canvas on other devices than my computer?

Yes. All courses can be accessed by smartphone using the Canvas app and/or by joining the course videoconference. This option has been helpful for some students.


What is CIIS doing to help students who are facing financial hardship due to COVID-19? 

CIIS recognizes COVID-19’s impact on our students and is committed to supporting our students as much as possible during this difficult time. 


The Summer 2021 Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) Grant Application PRIORITY DEADLINE is August 2, 2021.  Note that it is very likely that all Summer 2021 funds will be distributed at this time.  Applications received after the priority deadline will be reviewed only if money is leftover and distributed until the funding is exhausted.

Important Information:

  • The Summer 2021 CARES Act application is open. Submit the online CARES Act application form.
  • The PRIORITY DEADLINE is August 2, 2021.  Note that it is very likely that all funds will be distributed at this time.  Applications received after the priority deadline will be reviewed only if money is leftover and distributed until the funding is exhausted.
  • Students are eligible for HEERF funding only once per academic year.  For example, any student who receives a grant starting Summer 2021 is not eligible for Fall 2021 and Spring 2022 grant monies. 

The HEERF Emergency Grant (formerly the CARES Act) allocates funds to support individuals and businesses/organizations affected by the pandemic and economic downturn. HEERF includes several sources of funds for colleges and universities, including the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund. CIIS will receive funds under HEERF to provide emergency grants to students for “expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including expenses under a student’s cost of attendance, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, and childcare).”

All CIIS students are eligible to apply for HEERF funds.  Students must show a loss of income or financial hardship due to COVID-19. Additional factors considered by the review committee may include student and/or family income, dependents, and fixed expenses. The request for emergency funding will be reviewed by a committee composed of representatives from the following offices: Financial Aid, Student Accounts, Student Affairs, Office of Diversity & Inclusion, and the Provost's Office.  Information disclosed will be kept confidential.


Thanks to the generosity of the Office of the President and our Board of Trustees, we are able to announce the CIIS Financial Hardship Grant. 

The CIIS Financial Hardship Grant provides direct and immediate financial assistance for students who have been impacted by disasters, medical crises, other personal hardships and tragedies, or significant reduction to income which require a measure of temporary financial relief.  CIIS’s Financial Hardship Grant is not intended to provide long-term, continuous relief.  Students are eligible to receive the grant only once in an academic year. 

Students must be actively enrolled at CIIS during the term that they apply for the Financial Hardship Grant.  The Financial Hardship Grant will be reviewed by a committee composed of representatives from the following offices: Academic Affairs, Financial Aid, Office of Diversity & Inclusion, and Student Affairs.  Information disclosed will be kept confidential.  The Financial Hardship Grant will have a maximum request of $1500 per student.   

The CIIS Financial Hardship Grant application is attached to this email, and can also be found on the MyCIIS Student Affairs page.  Please email your completed application to studentaffairs@ciis.edu.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  Note that a finite amount of money will be allocated for the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters and distributed until the funding is exhausted.  

What external resources are available for students facing financial difficulties? 

*** CIIS curates and disseminates external financial resource information as a service to students and the CIIS community. Organizations are responsible for reporting information accurately, and CIIS cannot guarantee the completeness of such information. Listing by CIIS does not constitute an endorsement by CIIS nor representation of accuracy, authenticity, or other features by CIIS.  CIIS is not liable for any errors or omissions made in the compilation or distribution of this information, and expressly disclaims any and all responsibilities for problems that may arise with regard to such postings.  


To provide relief to student loan borrowers during the COVID-19 national emergency, federal student loan borrowers are automatically being placed in an administrative forbearance, which allows you to temporarily stop making your monthly loan payment. This suspension of payments will last until Sept. 30, 2020, but you can still make payments if you choose. Read the  borrower Q&As  to learn more.

Read Coronavirus announcements from Federal Student Aid website.


It’s a short application with a chance to receive $200. They state: “Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis and are subject to approval and available funds.”

Find information about the Scholly Stimulus Check program


As a community foundation, SVCF is positioned to meet the ongoing needs of our local communities and take on unexpected challenges, including response to the alarming spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. In recent weeks, SVCF has been closely monitoring the rapidly changing situation and working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Foundation, local public health agencies, our community partners to prepare for a potential outbreak. 

SVCF is leading an effort with our other Bay Area philanthropic partners on a regional response to this public health crisis. Our  COVID-19 Coronavirus Regional Response Fund  provides the community an opportunity to help our region meet the developing challenges linked with COVID-19 Coronavirus. Funds from SVCF’s COVID-19 Coronavirus Regional Response Fund will support lead organizations representing each of the ten Bay Area counties and their immediate efforts in addressing COVID-19 related challenges in their respective counties.  

Find information about community-based organizations in the Silicon Valley.


United Way is committed to standing with our communities and supporting those impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.  The fund will help vulnerable populations receive financial and social service support (e.g., bills, rent, food).  

Find information about Local United Way Responses to COVID-19.


GrantSpace by Candid has started a list to point individuals and organizations to emergency financial resources.  Please note: 

We do not give out grants/make donations; this list is an informational resource 

This list is not comprehensive; we are adding resources as we become aware of them.

Find more information about COVID-19 Emergency Financial Resources from GrantSpace.


I am an international Student and have questions about my situation. Who can I contact?

We know that our international students have an additional burden of distance and uncertainty to deal with. Please reach out to Jody O’Connor, our International Student Advisor, for information, guidance, and support:  joconnor@ciis.edu

What can I do to help the community address the COVID-19 challenges?

The San Francisco Department of Public Health is seeking healthcare volunteers to help in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Counseling and clinical psychologists, health coaches, and acupuncturist faculty and students are all needed. Find more information about Emergency Healthcare Volunteers.

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