Your First Year Starts Now: UVic’s Pre-Arrival Program
Guest post by Lauren Sutherland
On September 4, a new first-year class will start their studies at the University of Victoria. I know, I know: it’s the middle of summer and the first day of university is the last thing you want to think about. Still, for incoming first-year students, September 4 might be all you can think about—whether you’re excited, nervous, or everything in between, your first day of university marks a transformative moment in your life.
And there is nothing you can do to fully prepare for it.
Ok, ok, I’m being a little dramatic— of course there are things you can do to get ready for first-year university, all of which will make your transition a lot easier. That’s why UVic designed the online Pre-Arrival Program: you can explore eight topics, such as Finances and Academics, with informative videos, activities and planning tools to get to know UVic and prepare for university life.
For example, the Pre-Arrival Program will help you build a realistic budget, find academic support services and navigate the campus map. Ultimately, though, no one can tell you exactly what the next few years will hold. Before you start to worry, remember that’s a good thing: your university experience will be uniquely your own, and this opportunity will change your life in ways you never could have foreseen.
So enjoy your summer, enjoy the anticipation of your first day at UVic, and complete the online Pre-Arrival Program to get ready for university life! We should also mention that prizes are involved—every eligible student who completes the program by Wednesday, September 4, 2019 will be entered in a draw to win a $200 bookstore gift card.
Starting Off Strong: Complete the Pre-Arrival Program
Without a doubt, I truly wish I had something like the Pre-Arrival Program when I started my first year of university. Although that sentiment makes me sound approximately 102 years old (my first year wasn’t THAT long ago), I remember feeling worried and completely unprepared when I got to university.
Choosing my courses was confusing, I didn’t have an accurate sense of how much money I’d need for groceries every week, and I got lost about 6 times a day. While I’d like to say these experiences helped me build character, they were actually inconvenient and led me to waste time.
Luckily for you, new UVic students starting their first year of university have the Pre-Arrival Program. This online program is made up of 8 topics that will prepare you for important aspects of university life:
- Welcome to our community— Learn more about the UVic community, including some fun facts our community values and learn the basics of navigating the campus.
- Transition— Learn more about what changes to expect in your life, evaluate your life skills and make a plan for building and maintaining your community.
- Academic success— Learn what to expect during your first term at UVic, develop strategies for success and explore how to maintain your academic integrity.
- Finances— Learn more about the costs associated with being a university student, explore how financial systems work and identify strategies for ensuring you can finance your education and your life.
- Health & wellness— Learn about the wellness wheel, reflect on the strategies you use for self-care and explore ways to maintain positive mental and physical health at university.
- Substance use— Learn more about substance use at UVic and reflect on what you would like your relationship with substances to be.
- Respect & consent— Learn about UVic’s approach to addressing sexualized violence, including support services on campus, consent, prevention and responding to disclosures.
- Involvement— Learn why involvement is an important part of your UVic experience, explore the wide variety of opportunities available on campus and make a plan to get involved.
Each topic has a series of short videos, games and activities to help you make the most of your university experience. The topics are fun and informative and the entire program only takes about 3-4 hours to complete in total.
You can complete the program at your own pace, so you can save and exit to return to your place at any time. Each topic ends with a helpful “Resources” page that links to relevant services, so you’ll know exactly where to turn as you face different challenges.
Did we mention?
Win prizes by completing the Pre-Arrival Program!
Remember how I mentioned prizes earlier? As if there aren’t already a ton of benefits to completing the Pre-Arrival Program (Not getting lost! Learning to manage your money! Tips for doing well in your classes!), there’s extra incentive.
Every eligible student who completes the program by Wednesday, September 4, 2019 will be entered in a draw to win a $200 bookstore gift card. Additionally, if you complete designated topics by a specified deadline, you will be entered into a draw to win a corresponding prize pack. You can find the full details online!
Welcome to your first year at UVic—we hope the Pre-Arrival Program will help you feel more prepared and excited to join our campus community. To get started, visit the Pre-Arrival Program website. You can also follow @UniversityofVictoria on Instagram to get advice from UVic students and professors about your first year at UVic.
Lauren is a 2nd year UVic Law student who currently works for the Office of Student Life planning Transfer and Mature Student Welcome and Graduate Student Orientation. Lauren’s hobby is watching the Bon Appetit YouTube channel and creating worse versions of their recipes.