University of Minnesota Driven to Discover
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Orientation & Transition ExperiencesDecember 5, 2018

Congratulations Gophers!

You have almost completed your first semester at the U! We know you may be experiencing a number of emotions, so to help you through these last few weeks we have compiled some advice from recent U graduates:

“College is supposed to challenge you, and this may mean that you won’t get the grades you were hoping for. That’s okay. Remember that while A’s are nice, B’s and C’s do not by any circumstances mean that you didn’t sufficiently understand the material.”

“Try not to sacrifice your health for your academics. While focusing on getting your degree is important, your physical, emotional, and mental health is too. Make time for study breaks and activities that will put a smile on your face in the midst of everything you may have to do.”

“Start studying now, or as soon as you can, to not only make things easier on you during finals week, but also so you can get a feel of how you study best. It’s never too late to change your study habits if your current ones aren’t producing the results you want.”


Tis the Season to Study for Finals!

Prepare for your finals like a pro with these cool resources!

Spring Semester Registration

It’s registration time! Schedule Builder is an excellent tool to help you create multiple schedule options. Be sure to check your registration time on MyU (under the “Academics” tab) and verify that you don’t have any holds on your account. You can meet with your academic advisor or visit One Stop for additional registration support.

Grand Challenge Curriculum (GCC)

These 3-credit GCC courses focus on grand challenges like preventing antibiotic resistance, improving the quality of life for people who experience sensory loss, finding ways to engage citizens in energy conservation, uncovering truths about human morality, and more! Discover how to use your academic interests and unique perspective of the world to make a difference while completing a course that counts for Liberal Education requirements. Talk with your academic advisor to find out if any GCC courses might also fulfill a major requirement!


Things to keep in mind while you’re on your long break…


While you relax over break, here are some questions to think about that will help you make the most of your second semester at the U of M:

  • What is one thing from fall semester that you are proud of? What do you hope to be proud of next semester?
  • How do you want your spring semester to be different from your fall semester? How will you make this happen?
  • What is one thing you’ve been curious to learn more about, participate in, or try? What’s one step you will take to make that happen?

Make a list of goals you want to accomplish, map out some steps that will help you accomplish them, and then jot down how you will keep yourself accountable to these steps.

For students who will be staying around campus:

This is your time to explore the campus and beyond! Make use of your free time to explore areas of the Twin Cities you haven’t seen before or more of the U’s great resources, such as the libraries, CAPE, Student Counseling Services, Boynton Health, and more! Winter break is the perfect time to have a productive conversation with someone at a campus resource you've been meaning to visit. You can also discover volunteer opportunities! Think of all that you stand for and take some time to support organizations centered around the same cause.

Rather stay in the comfort of your own bed? Read a book for fun! Check out the bookstore’s top picks. Catch up on the latest hit shows. Talk to a friend you haven’t connected with in a while. Take this time to reload!

For students who will be going home:

Remember to respect the culture at home. There may be rules you need to follow, events you’re supposed to attend, or tasks you need to complete. Respect these expectations, yet don’t hesitate to explore compromises with others. If you notice some changes at home, be open to the changes, but don’t feel obligated to pretend that they’re all okay. If something bothers you, talk about it with someone else. Be honest, and don’t keep it to yourself. Feeling lost? Your family may be able to help in ways you wouldn’t have expected. However, if your family doesn’t know how to help you, remember that there are always resources on campus. Many campus resources will meet with you via phone or video chat, and appointment times may be easier to come by during break.

Want more resources to share with your parents and/or family members? Check out the Parent & Family Program and encourage them to sign up for emails!


Follow OTE on Social Media

Follow our office on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for chances to win giveaways and free prizes throughout the school year.

Nutritious U Food Pantry

December 11-13, 12:00–6:00 p.m. in 210 Coffman Union. Learn more...

Still looking for an interesting class to add to your schedule?

Freshman Seminars are small classes that allow first-year students to interact in a smaller setting, connect with a faculty member, and become involved in a unique area of study. Spring semester is your last opportunity to take a Freshman Seminar, so don't miss out. Click here for more information.

First-Year Experience
Orientation & Transition Experiences