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Kopp's Weekly - Establishing Community‏

Kopp's Weekly - Establishing Community‏

Establishing good relationships can help with all aspects of college life.

Dear Students,

It is great to have you all back — both the new students coming to campus and the returning students helping the newcomers prepare for the road ahead. More than one student this week conveyed they were anxious about the transition to UT. As a freshman I too was anxious, coming from a small Iowa town to study in the big city of Chicago.  I knew no one, and the strategies to be successful were as elusive as the foreign language building I had so much difficulty locating. But it's a transition that, for me, was eased by building relationships.

The first of those were friends in my residence hall. We became study partners and fellow explorers of the city. One new friend down the hall was Matt, a pre-med chemistry major who took Chinese and linear algebra for fun and helped me through freshman physics. Matt taught me about solving physics problems, yes, but even more about taking on challenges and seeking out other students in my courses. Just like Matt, the 200 newest peer mentors in the College of Natural Sciences here at UT — teaching assistants, residence hall tutors, mentors for FIGs or other programs — can be that resource for you. I hope you will seek out such peers. Consider, also, becoming a mentor, TA, or assistant in the College. These experiences may even send you down career paths you would not have foreseen.

Student organizations are an easy place to broaden your support network as well. In groups ranging from the Hispanic Health Professions Association, to iCare, to the Society for Physics Students, to the Global Medical Training, to Women in Computer Science, their student leaders are here to help you connect to a community of others pursuing similar passions. Just as powerful as seeing the sea of blue tee shirts of new students welcomed by Dean Hicke at Gone to Texas was the sight of student leaders from across the College help greet newcomers and introduce them to peers. Check out the complete list of student organizations. Here may be born friendships or interests that will last you a lifetime.

Sure, you can try to prove yourself and go it alone, but investing in relationships will strengthen your transition to and participation in college. As Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in a recent commencement address, "It's easier to be clever than kind". While each of us has talents we've been given, community is something we have to work at.

Welcome to our community,
Sacha Kopp
Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education,
College of Natural Sciences

Important Dates and Other Links

- Sept 4. Last day of the official add/drop period. See your adviser.
- Sept. 5. On the 5th class day you need to meet any pre-requisite requirements for your classes (credit for prior classes, or ALEKS score in chemistry or math) or else you will be dropped.
- Sept. 14. By the 12th class day you must drop any classes you want to switch out of, or else you will have to take a Q-drop for the class.


- Sept 13, 17, 19 "Resumania" workshops by the Career Design Center in WEL corridor


- Sept 24. CNS Fall Career Expo 1-6pm in Frank Erwin Center.  See cns.utexas.edu/careers for info, and as an orientation attend "How to Work a Career Fair" on 9/20 in WAG420, 5-6pm.
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Friday, 20 May 2022

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