Cal U Parent & Family E-News: January 2013

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Cal U Parent & Family E-News: January 2013

Welcome Back!

Students will be returning to campus soon, refreshed and ready to start the Spring 2013 semester. Classes begin on Monday, January 28. Residence halls will reopen for new students on Friday, January 25, and returning students are welcome back into residence halls starting at noon on Sunday, January 27. Vulcan Flyer service will resume on January 24. Does your student still need to make parking arrangements? A waitlist parking permit sale is scheduled for January 7 through February 1. Students may charge the parking fee to their student account during this time. 
An open sale for remaining permits will run from January 28 through February 1. Parking permits purchased after February 1 must be paid for with cash, a check or a credit card.

Satisfactory Academic Progress and Financial Aid

Last month the Financial Aid Office sent out Financial Aid Warning and Financial Aid Suspension emails to students who failed to meet satisfactory academic progress. Students may also check their status in VIP. When on Financial Aid Warning, students are still eligible for financial aid for that semester. If the student fails the following semester, they will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. When on Financial Aid Suspension, students are not eligible for financial aid unless an appeal is submitted. All students are encouraged to submit appeals and should contact the Financial Aid Office. The suggested Spring semester appeal deadline is February 1, 2013.

Satisfactory Academic Policy and Forms

Financial Aid Office

Meal Plan Adjustments

Campus meal plans are designed to give students a variety of dining options. Does your student have a meal plan for 2012-2013? How’s it working out?

The meal plan agreement is binding for the full academic year (both fall and spring semesters) or the balance thereof. To change a meal plan or for off-campus meal plan participants to obtain release from the meal plan agreement, students must notify the Office of Housing and Residence Life via email at or phone at 724-938-4444.  Adjustments can be made without financial penalty up to the close of business on January 25, 2013 for the spring semester.  Meal plan adjustments which occur between January 25, 2013 and the close of business on February 1, 2013 for the spring semester will be accessed a fee based on the adjustment.  After the adjustment period, meal plans can be cancelled and a partial refund made only upon complete withdrawal from the University and in compliance with University rules and regulations. Meal Plans

What Are You Going To Do With That? 

Changing or Choosing Majors 

Talking about choosing or changing majors can be difficult. The process is sometimes unsettling, especially as both parents and students weigh pragmatic issues of future job outlook with a student’s passions and abilities. How can you provide the informed support your student needs during this discovery or change in direction? University Parent Media suggests the following questions to help guide the conversation:

What do you love?  Start out on a positive note. Ask what it is that really excites your student. Make a list of possible interests.

Where do you excel?  Help your student think about what he/she is good at. Is it mathematics or art? In addition to subjects in school, consider personality traits. Is your student a good listener? Is your student a “people person?” Is he good at organizing things?

What are your dreams?   Visioning can be a powerful motivator. Encourage your student to imagine what that “dream job” might look like; then help him/her work backwards to see what it would take to get there.

What practical issues do you need to consider?  There’s nothing quite like financial considerations to bring adults back to reality and it should be no different for students. If yours will only have X amount of dollars to finance college, he/she will need to be strategic about every class so as to minimize losing credits and to keep incurred debt at a minimum. It’s important to allow your student to dream, but remind him/her that responsibilities and personal limitations are important, too.

Who else can you talk to?  Identify other resources that will help with the decision. For example, every student is assigned both an academic advisor and a career advisor. Students might also talk with an upper-classmen or professionals in a potential field of study. Gathering information about starting salaries, required certificates or degrees, internship opportunities, and relevant other experience will help in the decision-making.

What Can I Do With a Major In...

Cal U Career Advisors

Drop/Add Period January 28 – February 1

At the beginning of each semester students are given a few days to make any necessary adjustments to their course schedules without incurring financial or academic penalties. This is the only time in the semester when a student may do so. After the drop/add period has ended, a student can withdraw from a course between weeks two and ten of the semester. However, financial and academic penalties may incur. The drop/add period for the Spring 2013 semester begins on Monday, January 28, and ends on Friday, February 1 at 11:59 PM.

Important Upcoming Dates

Spring Classes Begin January 28
Add/Drop Period January 28 - February 1 
Last Day to Apply For Spring 2013 Graduation March 1
Early Registration for Fall 2013 March 4-8 (tentative)
Spring Break March 18-22
Last Day to Withdraw from a Course or the University April 5
Classes End May 10
Exam Week (Starting 4:00 on May 13) May 13-17
Spring Semester Ends May 17
Undergraduate Commencement (10:00 am) May 18

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