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Office of
First-Year
Experience
March 2017
Inside this Issue:
Its Festival Time 1
Tips for Student Success 2
Study Abroad 2
Summer & Part Time Jobs 3
Taking on Spring Break 4
At This Time, Your Student 5
Parent Newsletter
After what turned out to be a decently chilly Louisiana winter, its time to shake off the
winter blues and join the fun of festival season. The season is already underway and it can
be hard to choose among all the options!
First, the UL Lafayette College of Arts will be presenting in the annual Festival of the
Arts. Their ArTech Fusion will be held on March 17 and
includes activities and presentations from the depart-
ments of Visual Arts, Architecture, Music, and Perform-
ing Arts. Highlights include discussion about Big Data
and Virtual Reality, as well as premier performances
featuring music, dance, theater, poetry and animation.
Additional information can be located on the Festival of
the Artsschedule.
The City of Lafayette is home to a world-famous francophone festival, the Festival
International de Louisiane which celebrates French cultures from Europe, Africa, and the
Americas. Cultural highlights include music, cuisine,
dance, and arts and crafts. In its 31
st
year, the festival
will be held April 26-30 at stages throughout down-
town Lafayette and will feature over 100 performanc-
es like Isreal-born New Yorkers: Balkan Beat Box,
French: Ginkgoa, Zimbabwes Mokoomba, and local
favorites like Marc Broussard and GIVERS, plus so
many more! With no charge for admission, it is a
great event for the whole family! For additional infor-
mation or to plan your festival weekend please visit their website. Whatever your interests
or culinary tastes Festival International is guaranteed to impress!
Festival of the Arts and Festival International are just a small example of what Spring in
Louisiana has to offer. Think of an iconic food or object and there is probably a nearby
festival for it! To name just a few, the Acadian Memorial
Heritage Festival and Wooden Boat Congress will be on
March 18, the Acadiana Dragon Boat Festival will be
March 25, the Scott Boudin Festival will be April 21-23,
the Arnaudville Etouffee Festival will be April 28-30, the
Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival will be May 5-7, and
the Capital City Kite Fest will be April 1-2. And these are
just a handful taking place near the Lafayette area. Loui-
siana is a state steeped in culture, and if there is one thing
we know how to do, it is to share that culture. Consult the Louisiana Travels Festival
webpage for a full listing of events taking place during Spring 2017.
ITS FESTIVAL TIME!
1
2
SPRING 2017
ACADEMIC CALENDAR
Mar 13-24: Academic
Advising Period
Mar 27: Registration begins
for Priority and Seniors
Apr 1423: Spring Break/
Easter Break
Apr 24: Class Resumes
Apr 2630: Dead Days
Apr 28: Last Day of Classes
May 15: Final Exams
May 12: Spring
Commencement
May 12: Semester Officially
Ends
LOOKING TOWARD SUMMER: STUDY ABROAD
Having the opportunity to study abroad can be a transformative experience! In addition
to building confidence and global competence, students who have international experience
are considered to be more valuable to almost any potential employer as our world becomes
more globally interconnected. Luckily the UL Lafayette Study Abroad Program works hard
to facilitate this experience for Ragin Cajuns.
Its never too early to discuss study abroad options with your first-year students.
Although most students do not actually enroll in a study abroad program until later in their
academic career, the time is now to start thinking about locations, costs and options.
Typically students enroll for 3-9 credits and live/study abroad for one semester or during the
summer. UL Lafayette hosts programs in Costa Rica, France, and Italy; the England
program has been cancelled for Summer 2017 but it is planned to happen again in 2018.
Did you know that financial aid packages may be able to be applied to study abroad,
making this an affordable option for many? If your student is interested, have them fill out
the Im Interestedform online or get more information by email at
studyabroad@louisiana.edu.
HOW TO KNOW IF YOUR STUDENT IS LEARNING
Have you ever wondered what your student is learning in class, or if they are even
attending class? As their parent you not only wish to give them the tools they need to
succeed in life, but as someone who might be paying for their education you no doubt want
to make sure they are receiving what you are paying for. The news media is constantly
talking about major academic scandals on campuses from the Naval Academy, to the
University of West Virginia, to Harvard. Even the Wainstein Report was recently published
detailing the extent of dishonesty at UNC Chapel Hill. Though scandals are rare, it can be
difficult as a parent to know whether your student is learning. Sometimes college kids just
skip class. In times like these, how are parents supposed to feel safe in the quality of their
students education? The answer is knowing the safeguards and getting involved!
In order to confer academic degrees all universities must be accredited by a recognized
institution. These institutions regularly review schools on the quality of the educational
experience they provide in terms of integrity, accountability, improvements, learning, and
transparency. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is accredited by the Southern
Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS COC). UL Lafayette
must be officially reaccredited once every decade while also undergoing interim reviews
during that time period. The accreditation provided by SACS guarantees the quality of edu-
cation your son or daughter receives here at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette through
both teaching standards and class attendance.
But why put all of your trust in one place? You should know what your student is
getting out of UL Lafayette! The best way to do that is simply talk with your student. Ask
them what they are learning in class. Use open ended questions so that your student has to
fill the space with all of his or her experiences. Engage them about classes, professors, clubs
and organizations, their friends, and their res-hall experience if they live on campus. College
is a time of adventure and discovering the world, and as their parents you deserve to be a
part of your students adventure.
3
LOOKING TOWARD SUMMER: JOB OPPORTUNITIES
RESOURCES ON
CAMPUS
Academic Success
Center
Lee Hall
Rm. 115
(337) 482-6818
asc@louisiana.edu
Writing Center
H.L. Griffin Hall,
Rm. 107-108
(337) 482-6447
Counseling & Testing
Center
Saucier Wellness Center
O.K. Allen Hall
(337) 482-6480
counseling@louisiana.edu
Office of Disability
Services (ODS)
Conference Center,
Rm. 126
(337) 482-5252
ods@louisiana.edu
STEP Computer Labs
on Campus
Student Affairs
Division
Martin Hall
Rm. 211
(337) 482-6266
studentaffairs@louisiana.edu
The job market is fast moving to an experience-based model, meaning the more
job experience a student has, the better his or her chances of being selected over other
qualified candidates. With that said, summer is a great time for students to get
experience without the extensive responsibilities of the classroom. The Office of
Career Services will be hosting a Part-Time Summer Job Fair on March 23
rd
which
would be a great time for students to get a sense of what is out there, and maybe even
approach a potential employer. Whether your student chooses to take advantage of
the fair or not, now is still the best time to think about summer employment
opportunities, whether the end goal is industry experience or extra spending money.
Suggested Job Boards
Career Services Online
(UL Lafayette sponsored)
The Advertiser
The Advocate
Louisiana Job
Connection
Indeed Search Engine
Local Summer Employers
Red Lerilles
SELA Aquatics
Mall of Acadiana
Fontana Center
Non-local Summer Employers
Camp Stanislaus
Camp Ozark
Chestnut Lake Camp
YMCA Summer Camp
Americorps
U.S. Department of State
SUMMER AND PART TIME JOB FAIR
On Thursday March 23
rd
, 2017, UL Lafayette holds the Summer and Part Time
Job Fair for students in the Student Union Ballroom. This event is open to all UL
Lafayette students seeking summer and part time employment opportunities.
Employers from around the Acadiana area will be discussing summer employment
opportunities and taking applications. This event runs from 10:00am to 1:00pm and
lasts for one day only.
OUTSIDE TIPS
ON SPRING
BREAK
4
The coming of sunshine and warmth means one thing to college students:
Spring Break. This mid-semester vacation has become equated with a dangerous
experience steeped in alcohol, drugs, and sex due to coverage in American media
and cinema. Unfortunately there are facts to support some of this mentality; a
study conducted at the University of Wisconsin found that 75% of males and 43%
of females in college reported being intoxicated on a regular basis during Spring
Break. Exploring the world is an important part of life in college, so what can you
do as parents to help your student prepare for Spring Break?
According to the website Fight Back on Spring Break one of the best ways to
plan a trip is to research the location and know its reputation so your student
knows what he or she is getting into. A growing trend amongst college kids is to
head for new locations that dont match
the typical spring break beach trip.
Once there, the best rule is the simplest
rule: follow the law. Dont partake in
the use of illegal drugs, and if
underage, dont consume alcohol. For
those of age, the best advice is to be
smart and rely on your gut. It may be
urban legend, but you always know
what the right thing to do is, and your gut is the friend that reminds you what that
is. Following it will always lead to smarter decisions.
A second situation to be aware of is that your student may not always have to
fend for just him or herself. The smartest thing any student can do on Spring
Break is stick with a group of trustworthy friends. That could mean your student
may have to take care of a friend should any situations arise. Knowing how to
recognize and respond to things like binge drinking and alcohol poisoning may be
critical to keep a bad situation from getting worse. Also, when sticking with a
group of friends it is always a good idea for at the least one to remain sober, to be
fully aware of any situation and provide uninhibited assistance.
Finally, the last thing we can do for these freshmen is to trust them. Despite
how we may sometimes feel, they are now adults and deep inside they know right
from wrong because they were taught these principles by you (their parents) and
us (their teachers). We can prepare them for any situation, but in the end they are
out there flying free and will more than likely make the right decisions to stay
healthy and safe. For additional tips about planning a Spring Break trip and
staying safe, please explore the links provided in the left hand column under
Outside Tips on Spring Break.
TAKING ON SPRING BREAK
Spring Break Safety Tip Sheet
Your First Spring Break
Travel Safety Tips
Spring Break Tips for Parents
Another Letting Go
Experience
ALTERNATIVE
SPRING BREAK
IDEAS
Stay in Lafayette to enjoy sleep
and Ragin Cajun Athletic
events.
If youre not from Lafayette,
head home for quality family
time.
Take the City of New Orleans
on a site-seeing tour to Chicago.
Take a trip through Louisiana
Plantation country.
Go camping in a Louisiana state
park.
Volunteer abroad as a way to
see the world but also give back.
Visit attractions such as Blue
Bayou or Six Flags
Gain experience by traveling to
locations that support your
academic or career interests.
Contact Information
Visit us at our office:
230 Hebrard Blvd.
Lee Hall, Room 106
Monday-Thursday
7:30am-5:00pm
Friday
7:30am-12:30pm
firstyear.louisiana.edu
(337) 482-6599
ofye@louisiana.edu
Follow OFYE on
Social Media
5
YOUR STUDENT THROUGHOUT THE SEMESTER: MARCH
During the month of March, students begin preparing for the upcoming Fall semester by scheduling classes
and meeting with their advisors. Often, students begin to feel the pressure and stress of mid-term exams at this
point in the semester as they begin preparing for them. Additionally, if your student has not declared a major or
is dissatisfied with their major choice, they may look into changing majors, or declaring a major. Students may
also feel stressed about the summer: finding summer jobs or internships can often be difficult.
As parents, here are a few things that you can do to help them.
1. Be open to communication. They may or may not ask you for advice; this is ok. Be there for them if they
ask.
2. Send postcards or care packages during this stressful time. Maybe include notecards, pens, granola bars, or
gum. Anything to show that you are there for them.
3. If they ask for guidance, especially in academic-related areas, refer them to see academic counselors. Here
at Lee Hall, we offer counseling if students are unsure about their major, want to see if theyre on track to
graduate, or any other academic advice—with no appointment necessary!
Click here to see what freshman go through during each month!