Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Thinking of becoming a Sociology Major?!

If you've been considering declaring Sociology, the deadline is fast approaching!  Sociology is an open major, but has a limited window of opportunity in which you can declare each semester.  If you want to pursue upper-level courses/requirements for the major in the Fall, you should declare by the April 1st deadline (THAT'S TOMORROW!!!) for the widest range of course options.  You can declare by going to the Sociology office in 704 Thompson Hall and have a Change of Major Form completed A.S.A.P.

All new majors must attend an Orientation on Thursday from 4-5:30 PM in Dickinson Rm 112.   
Here you can meet faculty and staff, learn about departmental resources and opportunities, and get to know the Sociology department's Peer Advisors!  YOU CAN ALSO DECLARE YOUR MAJOR AT THIS MEETING, if you don't make it to the Sociology office before then.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Weekly Preview: March 27 to April 2

It's a busy week, coming up.  In addition to these events, plan to see your advisor WELL BEFORE your enrollment appointment, so you're able to sign up for fall classes as soon as possible.  Click here for a checklist you can use to help you prepare to speak with your advisor.

Here's what's happening next week:

Monday, March 29.  Pre-registration for Five-College Interchange (Fall 2010) begins, and will run through April 16th.  To take courses at Amherst, Hampshire, Mt. Holyoke, or Smith, print out the Five-College Enrollment form from your SPIRE account.  Visit the UMass Amherst Five-College website  and/or search the Five-College website for courses.

Monday, March 29.  4th Annual Undergraduate Life Science Research Symposium.  See what research projects undergraduate students are doing!  The Symposium showcases interdisciplinary life science research at the undergraduate level. The event begins with a poster session at 1:00 p.m. in the Campus Center Auditorium, where undergraduate students present their research to the broader UMass scientific community.  At 4:00 p.m. in the Engineering Lab II 119 Auditorium, Darrell Irvine, from MIT, will give this year's keynote lecture, "The Bionic Immune System: Using Biomaterials to Empower and Understand Immunity".

Monday, March 29, 10-11am.  RefWorks Workshop.  The first part of each workshop covers how to access RefWorks, import references from library databases and catalogs, retrieve and manage citations, and create bibliographies using various citation styles (e.g. MLA or APA).  The second part covers in-depth applications such as Write-N-Cite for adding references to a Word document and RefShare for sharing folders with other researchers.  Calipari Room, Du Bois Library.

Tuesday, March 30, 6-7pm.  Writing Placement Test.  Students who wish to enroll in ENGL WRIT 112 (College Writing) who have NOT previously taken this exam MUST do so to qualify.  Remember - ENGL WRIT 112 is a General Education requirement, unless you have placed out of it.  Bartlett 302.

Wednesday, March 31, 4-5pm.  Need Help Choosing a Major?  Student Panel Discussion.  Attend this student discussion to hear from students in BDIC, Economics, Communication, Biology and Certificate Programs.  Learn about the process of choosing a major: the pros & cons, internship opportunities, courses in majors, and more!  Refreshments will be served.  604 Goodell.

Wednesday, March 31, 6pm.  The Student Alumni Association (SAA) and the UMass Amherst Alumni Association are proud to present the Campus to Career program, Changing Course: Navigating Your Career Path.  Not all fulfilling careers have a direct path from point A to point B. Are you prepared if your journey takes you off course? Join our alumni panel as they discuss how they still found their career success when their current profession differed from their original degree.
Alumni panelists include:
– Stephen Andrews '76, Education (Physical/Athletic Training); Senior Vice President of the Treasury Group with Sovereign Bancorp, Inc. in Boston, MA
– Timothy Haarmann '68, Sociology; Vice President and Senior Client Services Portfolio Manager with Loomis Sayles in Boston, MA
– Julie Delvecchio-Savage '79, '84G, '90PhD, Environmental Design, Industrial Engineering and Industrial Engineering and Regional Planning; Executive Director with the MITRE Corporation in Bedford, MA
– Benjamin Scott '99, Physics; Vice President with Affiliated Managers Group, Inc. in Prides Crossing, MA
Light refreshments will be served.  Memorial Hall.

Thursday, April 1, 4-5:30pm.  Info Session for Prospective Sociology Majors and Orientation for new Sociology Majors.  All new majors MUST attend this meeting and students considering Sociology as their major are strongly encouraged to attend.  Meet faculty and staff, learn about departmental resources and opportunities, and get acquainted with Sociology’s peer advisors.  Light refreshments will be served.  For more information, email  NOTE:  April 1 is the deadline for declaring a Sociology major this spring . . . after the end of this meeting, you will not be able to declare Sociology until next fall.  112 Dickinson. 

Friday, April 2, 3:30pm.  Computer Science: First Friday Event and Advising.  General information and advising for Computer Science Majors and Minors and all students interested in Computer Science. 151 Computer Science Building.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Clear up those HOLDS!

Holds are now listed on SPIRE. If you see something like this when you log on to SPIRE:
Then you have a HOLD on your account! Some holds MAY PREVENT YOU FROM ENROLLING IN COURSES! Click on the link to the right of your schedule in SPIRE and it will tell you why the hold is there. DON'T WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE TO CLEAR IT UP!

Some 'common' holds are:
Bursar bill not paid--See the Bursar in Whitmore!
Incomplete Immunization Records--Go to Health Services for info!
Academic Advising Needed--You must make an appointment with your Advisor!

Don't let a hold keep you from getting into classes you need!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

So you want to be a Resource Economics major?

If you're interested in pursing a Resource Economics major, the deadline to complete an Online Statement of Interest is fast approaching!  You must complete this form BY MARCH 26TH--THAT'S THIS FRIDAY--in order to register for Fall courses as a major.  In other words, if you want the most choices in terms of course access, you should complete the form by the deadline above.  Once you do, you'll receive an email within 7 days to schedule an advising meeting, where you'll be able to formally declare your major.

Need to know more before you decide?  
Attend an Info Session TONIGHT at 6pm in Stockbridge Room 114 or 
Have a look at the department's very detailed undergraduate handbook

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


How time flies! Class offerings for next semester are up on SPIRE. If you would like to schedule an appointment to discuss next semester call us at 545-2191. Keep in mind that we do get busy, so the sooner you call the better your chances of getting a time that best suits your needs.
Also be sure to check your registration appointments--so if you want help with courses, try to set up your appointment with us BEFORE your enrollment appointment begins!

W Drop and Pass/Fail Deadline Today!

~ Attention ~

Today is the last day to Withdraw from a course with a W or switch to the Pass/Fail option!

Please see your academic advisor or your academic dean's office for further questions or help.

If you do not know who your advisor is, or how to contact your dean's office, you can call the Undergraduate Advising Office in 615 Goodell at (413) 545-2191 for assistance.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Infrequently Asked Questions video series 3: Beat The Rush!


pt. 3: Beat The Rush! 

Weekly Preview for March 21 to 26

Welcome back from Spring Break!  As you may remember, from this point until the end of the semester, the pace quickens - plan ahead to get everything done!
Monday, March 22  Classes Resume

Monday, March 15 to July 19.  Summer Session Registration.  Register now for Summer Session 2010, featuring classes on campus plus 200+ online classes. Choose from three sessions, starting in May, June and July.  ***Make sure classes will work in your degree program the way you think they will!
Session I: May 17-June 7
Session II: June 8-July 13
Session III: July 14-August 17

Tuesday, March 23, 3pm.  Pizza ‘n Prof with Professor Chris Bachelder, a Professor of English and member of the creative writing faculty at UMass.  Bachelder is the author of the novels Bear v. Shark (2001), U.S.! (2006), and Abbott Awaits (forthcoming in 2011). His e-book, Lessons in Virtual Tour Photography, was published in 2004 by McSweeney's, and is available free at Please RSVP to Goodell 504.

Tuesday, March 23 Mid-Semester Date – Last Day to Drop with a “W” or to Choose the Pass / Fail option.

Wednesday, March 24, 3:30pm.  RefWorks Workshop.  The first part of each workshop covers how to access RefWorks, import references from library databases and catalogs, retrieve and manage citations, and create bibliographies using various citation styles (e.g. MLA or APA).  The second part covers in-depth applications such as Write-N-Cite for adding references to a Word document and RefShare for sharing folders with other researchers.  Integrated Sciences Building, 3rd Floor.

Wednesday, March 24, 5:30 pm.  Alumni 2.0: Life After UMass Amherst, a panel discussion with young alumni from the School of Public Health and Health Sciences and the School of Nursing. Get a glimpse of where these recent UMass Amherst grads are, and how their education and experiences got them there. Join the panel for light food and refreshments as these alumni answer questions regarding their careers, job searches, involvement as a student and more! This discussion is open to all current UMass Amherst students, faculty and alumni. Memorial Hall.
Alumni panelists include:
- Megan Cole '09, Public Health.  Public Health; Master of Public Health in Health Policy graduate student at Yale University’s School of Public Health in New Haven, CT
- Erin Kelly '09, Nursing.  Nursing; Registered Nurse in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
- Laura Hutchinson '04, '08PhD, Human Nutrition and Doctorate in Public Health.  Full-time nutrition instructor at Holyoke Community College in Holyoke, MA
- John Kleschinsky '04, '07G, Exercise Science and Biology and Masters in Public Health.  Research Associate with the Division on Addictions of the Cambridge Health Alliance in Medford, MA
- Stevenson Morency '08, Nursing.  Nursing; Staff nurse in the Surgical Trauma Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA

Wednesday, March 24, 6pm.  Resource Economics Info Session.  If you're considering a major in ResEc, this info session is a MUST!  Note, also, that the online Statement of Interest must be completed by March 26th in order to register for Fall 2010 courses as a ResEc major.  This is the last scheduled Info Session of the semester.  STK 114.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Dropping With a 'W' (and Pass/Fail too!) DEADLINE MARCH 23rd!

Dropping with a W is a standard practice. It is not punitive and will not count against you should you decide to apply for/declare a major (as long as you have completed whatever pre-requisites and predictor courses and meet the requirements for that specific department).You should consider dropping a course with a 'W' if you know that you will not do well in it (C- or below) especially if your major/application expects a strong cumulative GPA. Now you have the opportunity to take a Pass/Fail option as well. Go here to learn more about Pass/Fail. Here are a few things you should know if you are considering dropping a class with a 'W':

  • Unlike dropping a class during Add/Drop, when you drop a class with a 'W', it WILL show up on your transcripts. But once you drop, you are out of the class and will not receive a grade.
  • Also unlike Add/Drop, dropping with a W cannot be done on Spire. You must fill out a COURSE CHANGE REQUEST FORM and have your instructor sign the form before you submit the completed form to the registrar's office. You must do this if you elect to take a class Pass/Fail, however an INSTRUCTOR'S SIGNATURE IS **NOT** REQUIRED FOR THE COURSE CHANGE REQUEST FORM!
  • What if I miss the deadline? There will be no extension to the deadline. If you want to drop a course after the 3/23/10 and you are an undeclared student, you will need to attend Undergraduate Advising / Dean's Office Drop-in Hours and complete a type-written petition that will be reviewed by the Academic Review Committee (within the Dean's Office).  However, be proactive! If you KNOW that your decision will be based on a grade for an exam/paper you will receive AFTER the deadline, stop by Academic Advising and let us know!
  • Be sure that you do not drop a class if doing so will leave you with fewer than 12 credits. **Remember** you must be enrolled in 12 CREDITS OR ABOVE in order to be considered a full-time student. This is another good reason to consider Pass/Fail as an option.
  • And remember, while dropping with a W isn't punitive, amassing a group of 'W' drops, say more than 5-6 during your time at UMass, may not look favorably for you when, for example, a graduate program reviews your transcripts. 
If you would like to speak to an advisor about dropping with a W, please call 545-2191 and make an appointment, or come to Drop-In Hours at 615 Goodell, from 10:30-11:30 and 3-4 daily.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

network, Network, NETWORK!

Still looking for summer job? An internship? Or even that elusive permanent job after graduation? Have you been checking Help Wanteds in the newspaper and online, but haven’t found anything?  This may be why: "approximately 70-75 % of most jobs are found through networking." What’s networking? Click here for more info.

While you're home – or away - for Spring Break, you’ll be seeing people you don't ordinarily see. Pay attention to what people are doing. Ask them questions about their jobs and how they got there. If it’s interesting to you, ask whether they could help you network to find a job or an internship.

Work Your Contacts! Arrange for an Informational Interview with someone who works in a field you may be interested in; click here for help on how to go about it and how to prepare, as well as ideas for questions and do's and don'ts. 

Friday, March 5, 2010

Weekly Preview: March 6 through 12

Spring Break is coming!
As we lead up to Spring Break, the week offers some events related to your life as a student right now; one event looking further into your academic program, and a couple of events that give you the opportunity to hear from UMass graduates about how they've put their various degrees and activities to work in the "real world."  Even if you won't be graduating soon, you can start networking and seeing how to navigate the next big step in your life!

Monday, March 8, 12 pm or Wednesday, March 10, 3 pm.  London and Sydney Internship Information Sessions.  Interested in an internship in London or Sydney?  Come to an info session to learn more.  Students who wish to participate in the program are required to attend one information session for initial information.  Education Abroad Advising Center (455 Hills South). 

Monday, March 8, 7:30 pm.  Basic Math Skills (R1) Exemption Test.  Students who wish to exempt themselves from the R1 requirement through examination should take this test.  Bring your student ID, a calculator, and #2 pencils.  Marcus 131.
Tuesday, March 9, 2:30 pm.  RefWorks Workshop.  Learn to use RefWorks, a program that manages citations and creates quick bibliographies. The first part of each workshop covers how to access RefWorks, import references from library databases and catalogs, retrieve and manage citations, create bibliographies using various citation styles (e.g. MLA APA). The second part covers in-depth applications such as Write-N-Cite for adding references to a Word document and RefShare for sharing folders with other researchers.  W.E.B. Du Bois Library, Calipari Room.

Tuesday, March 9,  5:30 pm.  Hello City: NYC.  The UMass Amherst Alumni Association invites you to meet with alumni panelists, who will give you an idea of how they’ve put their various UMass majors and experiences to work in NYC.  Panelists will discuss life in New York City, from finding the housing that’s best for you, to searching for a job, to following leads on networking opportunities in the city.
Panelists include:
- Chanel Dubofsky '01, English and Judiac Studies; Coordinator of Social Justice & Israel Programs at Columbia/Barnard Hillel in New York, NY.
- Matthew Raycroft '96, Communication; Founder and Project Specialist with Raycroft Project Specialists in New York, NY.
- Deanna Vasilakis '07, Journalism; Teacher at P.S. 154X - Jonathan D. Hyatt School in Bronx, NY.
Seating is limited; register today.  Refreshments will be provided.  Memorial Hall

Wednesday, March 10, 5:30pm.  Political Science Career Networking Night.  The Political Science Undergraduate Board, the Department of Political Science and the UMass Amherst Alumni Association invite you to meet and network with successful political science alumni currently working in a variety of fields. This is a great opportunity to find out how their degree in political science helped shape their career path.  A "speed-networking" format will be used, allowing small groups of students to meet with each alumnus/a to ask questions about his/her career experiences.  At the conclusion of the program, students will have the opportunity to meet informally with the alumni.
Alumni participants:
Andrew Cantillon '91, Political Science; Senior Account Manager with Motorola, Inc. in Framingham, MA
Ashley Floreen '07, Political Science; Former Research Associate and Field Organizer for Hillary Clinton for President
Michaella Morzuch '03, '08G, Political Science and Masters in Public Policy and Administration; Research Analyst with Mathematica Policy Research in Cambridge, MA
Eric Nakajima '99, Political Science; Senior Innovation Advisor with the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development in Boston, MA
Register in advance; seating is limited. Business casual attire; refreshments provide.  Memorial Hall.

One quick reminder: the "W" Drop and Pass/Fail Deadlines will hit immediately after Spring break.  If you have any concerns about a class or if you're worried you won't have enough information to make a decision, see your advisor NOW!  Watch the Blog for more information about these deadlines.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Public Health Info Session

Are you interested in declaring Public Health as your major or switching to Public Health from another Major? If so, please sign up for the group advising session below!

Furthermore, if you have recently joined the Major, it is also an opportunity to get valuable information about opportunities, courses, sequencing classes, and the field in general, so plan to attend the meeting.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Arnold House, Room 321

3:30 PM

Please send email to Lynn Koerbel at if you plan on attending.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Summer Job Openings!

Planning to spend your summer in Amherst?  Looking for a great job that will help you build connections on campus and develop your leadership skills in the process?  Well, we've got the perfect opportunity for you!

Undergraduate Advising & Learning Communities is hiring Peer Advisors for Summer Orientation.  As a summer peer, you'll share your knowledge of UMass courses, majors, RAPs, and other academic opportunities with incoming students and you'll work closely with a faculty, staff, or graduate advisor to help new students create a great fall schedule!  Sound interesting?  Read our full job description to make sure you qualify then fill out and return an application by 5 p.m. on March 22nd!!

Feel free to email Tonya Blundon at with any questions about the position or application.

Both decalred and undeclared students are encouraged to apply!  
We'd love to have you as part of our advising team this summer!

Monday, March 1, 2010

ULead Speaker Series Night TONIGHT!!

Tonight, 7PM Memorial Hall


Tonight is a good opportunity to hear from recent UMass Alumni on the benefits of leadership and leadership skills and how they have been beneficial to their careers after graduation. From their website:

'Have you ever asked yourself, “What can I do now to be a better leader?” or, “How far can great leadership skills take me after UMass Amherst?” If so, join us and you will have the opportunity to meet and network with successful alumni currently working in a variety of fields as they discuss leadership'


There will also be DRAWINGS for prizes! See their website for details!

International Scholars Program Information Meeting TONIGHT!

***TONIGHT 4:30 PM GOODELL 504***

Wanna get away? Wanna see the world?

Wanna learn how?

If you are a first year student and your GPA is 3.5 or above, now is the time to plan if you want to go abroad junior year. The International Scholars Program is having an information meeting tonight in Goodell 504 at 4:30. Through the Commonwealth College and the International Programs Office, ISP "allows qualified students to integrate international studies coursework and study abroad during their undergraduate years.  ISP is highly competitive, admitting approximately 15-20 students per year." To find out how to apply, as well as other details surrounding ISP, make it a point to attend tonight. If you can't make it tonight but want to find out more, you can contact Commonwealth College via email or by calling 545-2483 to make an advising appointment. Or you can contact International Programs Office at 545-5247 or via email.


So, you want to be a Resource Economics Major?

On Campus Transfer Information Session

Information session for UMass students interested in exploring the Resource Economics major are welcome to attend the following session:

Tuesday Marh 2, 2010 - 5:30-6:30 pm
Stockbridge 217

For information please contact the ResEc Undergraduate
Advising Office: