Diverse Student Life At Our Seminary

A diverse community of faith, Perkins School of Theology is a place where we study, learn, grow, worship, and experience God together. With approximately 350 students, 40 faculty, and 25 staff in Dallas and our Houston-Galveston Extension Program, Perkins is a community that cares. Opportunities abound for conversation and fellowship with students and faculty inside and outside the classroom. The community is enhanced by small class sizes, informal discussion sessions, weekly worship, community lunch, and student interest groups. At Perkins you will have the opportunity to build relationships extending far beyond graduation.

Take a closer look at the Perkins community by joining us during Inside Perkins and we will introduce you to our renowned faculty, outstanding staff, and the future Christian leaders that make up our student body.



For Frequently Asked Questions for all SMU students, please visit https://blog.smu.edu/coronavirus-covid-19/category/faq/student-faq/


1.  When and where am I required to wear a facemask on campus?

Face coverings are required over the mouth and nose in all public indoor spaces. This requirement –in accordance with the latest local ordinance –includes classrooms; building entrances and exits; lobbies and lounges; as well as in hallways, stairwells, restrooms and elevators. Face coverings are not required outdoors when adequate physical distancing is possible; in private spaces such as inside an office or partitioned cubicle for employees; or inside an individual residence hall room for students.

2. What are the options for parking on-campus for full-time and part-time students who are commuting as well as occasional parking needs for students who are taking classes virtually?

To park on campus, full and part-time students will need to purchase a permit or make use of parking meters in designated areas. Student parking information, garages, and campus parking maps can be found on the SMU Parking and ID Services page. The closest garages to Perkins are the Meadows Parking Garage (enter the left gate since the right is for Meadows) and the Hillcrest Parking Center where students can park on levels 3 and 4 with permit.

If you are only coming to campus occasionally, you will need to order daily parking permits for $10.  You may order these permits and learn their designated lots in the SMU Parking Portal.

All currently enrolled students are eligible for the the DART transit pass offering unlimited bus and rail use.  DART also manages SMU free shuttles around campus and in surrounding neighborhoods.

For more parking and transportation information or if you need assistance, please contact the Parking and ID Card Services Office during normal business hours 8:30am-5pm Monday to Friday, 214-768-7275 or email them at parking@smu.edu.

3.  How do I connect to SMU’s learning management system (Canvas) and training in using it?

Canvas is the online platform used for all of your courses at SMU and may be accessed through the Office of Information Technology Website.  Their page will walk you through how to get started with Canvas and access your courses.  Canvas Guides for Students and Online Training Videos are available at the SMU Documentation and Training Link.  For more information, call or email the SMU Office of Information Technology Help Desk at (214) SMU-HELP (768-4357) or help@smu.edu.  

Helpdesk Office Hours:

Monday through Thursday

8:00 AM - 8:00 PM


8:00 AM - 6:00 PM


9:00 AM - 5:00 PM


11:00 AM - 6:00 PM


4.  What are the options for mental health counseling and group sessions for graduate students?

Counseling Services is located on the 2nd floor of the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center 8:30am - 5:00 pm (Monday - Friday).  They offer Personal Counseling for issues concerning relationships, alcohol/drug abuse, eating disorders, sexuality and gender identity, sexual harassment and assault, and adjustments to college life issues.   You may book an appointment on their website or call 214-768-2277.  Group Counseling is available weekly in areas of Graduate Student Meditation, Undergraduate Student Meditation, and Survivors of Sexual Assault.  For further information and the group counseling schedule, please contact Julie Hobdy, Ph.D. at jhobdy@smu.edu or 214-768-2232.

The Bob Smith Health Center will offer telehealth visits with limited in-person visits available depending on the issue.  To make an appointment for a medical issue, please visit their website.

5.  How do I know where to sit once I enter a classroom at Perkins School of Theology?

All classroom spaces have appropriately physically distanced spaces marked with “PLEASE SIT HERE” stickers.  The classrooms with flexible seating have been set up for appropriate physical distancing.  Please do not move any classroom furniture from its designated position.

6.  How will I access cleaning supplies to wipe down my workspace in the classrooms?  

Disposable towels and spray bottles of disinfectant are provided in each classroom.  They will be replenished regularly by custodial staff.

7.  Where may I eat my lunch on campus? Is there a place to refrigerate my lunch?

The Refectory (1st floor Prothro) and The Perk (Selecman) is closed for food/beverage/snack service.  The Refectory and the Perk are assigned as Zoom spaces.  For an outdoor lunch/dinner, there are many benches around campus or outdoor tables located outside of buildings including Mac’s Place and the Hughes-Trigg Student Center.  There are no refrigerators for use at this time at Perkins. 

8.  What dining facilities are open for graduate students for meal service?

SMU Dining offers many locations on campus to purchase food.  For a full list of their facilities, visit the SMU Dining Locations and Menus website.   The website is an accurate guide to which facilities are open or closed.  For more information about meal plans available to graduate students, click here.  The dining halls will operate under the current recommended county guidelines including occupancy guidelines, use of sanitation stations to wipe down tables, elimination of self-serve food stations, and social distance seating arrangements.

9.  Where is the Perkins coffee pot?

Break rooms and lounges at Perkins will be closed for the fall semester.  Bring your own coffee or purchase coffee and beverages at one of the many SMU dining locations on campus.

10.  Should I bring my own water to campus?  

Due to the pandemic, the water fountains in all SMU buildings are not in use, so yes, bring a reusable water bottle.  You may purchase water at several SMU dining locations on campus.

11.  Where can I study on campus?

“Zoom Spaces” are available throughout campus.  You may reserve a space at the OIT website.  Reservations can be made in one hour blocks up to one week in advance.  There are designated Zoom spaces available in Prothro and Selecman Halls.

12.  Where can I find a reference librarian to help me with research resources and editing my papers?

Bridwell’s Reference librarians, Jane Elder and Leslie Fuller, work from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday through Friday. They are available by email or chat. You can find all these methods of contacting them here: https://www.smu.edu/Bridwell/Help

13.  Since Bridwell Library is closed for construction, how may I check out a book?

Placing a hold through the library catalog is the best way for students to get materials. Bridwell Library also offers this service for guests and alumni for Bridwell materials only.  Using the online catalog allows students to see what books are online and if the physical title is checked out. This also gives them the ability to see their options for pickup and delivery. 

If students have any issues with their library/ILL accounts or placing items on hold through the online catalog, they are more than welcome to use the SMU Libraries chat services or email the Bridwell Library Staff at bridcirc@smu.edu

 14.  What is a “Zoom Space” and how can I schedule a time to use it?

Zoom spaces are spread across campus and  provide students with a quiet space to engage virtually in their courses. Students need to bring their own laptops and headphones and masks are required. Zoom spaces are scheduled through a centrally managed reservation system.  You may reserve a space at the OIT website.  Reservations can be made in one hour blocks up to one week in advance.  There are designated Zoom spaces available in Prothro and Selecman Halls conveniently located at Perkins School of Theology.

15.  What is the protocol for using the restrooms in the building at Perkins?

Please note that to follow social-distancing guidelines, the two-stall restrooms on all floors of Kirby and Selecman Halls are single occupant until further notice.  On the door, you will find a manually-operated green “vacant” and red “occupied” indicator so you will know if anyone is inside.  Please turn the wheel to red when you go in and turn to green upon exit.  Please note that on occasion people may forget to adjust the indicator.  

We ask that you use 6 feet of social distancing when using the larger bathroom facilities on the first and second floor of Prothro Hall.

16.  How will community worship be offered this year? How can I get involved?

Community Worship will be offered on zoom this semester on Wednesdays, 11:30 am – 12:20 pm and Thursdays, 11:30 am – 12:00 pm.  Look for the zoom link in Friday’s Perkins News or in a weekly email.  Email Dr. Mark Stamm, Chapel Elder, at mstamm@smu.edu to get involved. 

17.  How will Community Hour at Perkins be offered?

Community Hour at Perkins will be offered on Zoom every Tuesday, from 11:30 am – 12:20 pm.  Look for the zoom link in Perkins News each Friday.

18.  Is there a computer lab that I may use at Perkins? Does Perkins have any loaner laptops for students?

The Prothro Computer Lab is located in Prothro Hall room 208 and is available for student use from 8:30am – 5:00pm, Monday – Friday.  The Prothro lab will be disinfected daily.  OIT is strongly urging users of the lab to use a provided disinfecting wipe on the keyboard, mouse and their hands before and after using the computer. 

Once Bridwell Library construction is complete (hopefully in the Spring), they will have computers for student use in the basement.  

Perkins has a limited number of loaner laptops available for student use.  Please contact Tracy Anne Allred at tallred@smu.edu  for information on requesting a loaner laptop.

19.  What is the SMU pledge to protect our community and where do I sign it?  

SMU is committed to keeping students, staff, and faculty safe during Covid-19 and is asking every student to review this document and pledge to reduce the spread of Covid-19.  The pledge may be viewed and signed at the link below.

20.  Who can I contact if I am having trouble with accessing my classes virtually?

The SMU Office of Information Technology is available by phone or email Monday through Thursday, 8:00 am – 8:00 pm, Friday, 8:00 am – 6:00 pm, Saturday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, and Sunday, 11:00 am – 6:00 pm.  At all other times, they have partnered with Instructure, the company behind Canvas, to provide 24-hour support for Canvas via chat within Canvas or the support hotline at 1-844-865-2568.

21.  How do I reserve a room on campus for a student organization, study group, or other gathering?

We are recommending that all student organizations, study groups, or other gathering be held virtually via Zoom.  You may schedule a Zoom meeting here: https://www.smu.edu/OIT/services/zoom .

22.  How can I make an appointment with a faculty member, a staff member, or other administrator on campus?  

Generally, contact the person you need to speak with.  Your instructors should include their preferred contact information and virtual office hours in the course syllabus.  Perkins staff members are listed on the Perkins website.  If you know the person’s name, you may also look up their contact information in the online SMU Directory.  If you aren’t sure who to contact, consult the Office of Student Life at 214-768-3371.  Please be aware that most meetings will be conducted either by phone or on Zoom.

23.  How will I be contacted by SMU or Perkins School of Theology?

SMU, your professors, and the staff at Perkins will communicate with you through your SMU email address.  Please check it daily at https://www.smu.edu/OIT/Services/Webmail.   

24. How can I sign up to learn about COVID cases on campus?

If you would like to be updated when a positive case is added to the campus list, please email subscribe-covidcasenotifications@list.smu.edu to receive notifications.