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A Stop on the Educational Experience Pg.1

The Cardinal Call

June 2011 Edition Table of Contents

Welcome Letter Bronwen McAuliffe and Josh Monroe Orientation 2011 Student Coordinators Section One: Starting Your Classes off Right How NOT to Fail out of College Are You Ready for Catholic? Section Two: Exploring Your Interests Looking for a Job or Internship Now? How Career Services Can Help You in Choosing a Major! To Major or Not to Major? Meet Me at the Pryz. Section Three: Academic Centers Library and Information Center What does it take to be a Successful College Student? Academic A la Carte Section Four: Study Abroad Improve your Career Prospects: Intern Abroad! La Vita Belle Beyond America: My Life Abroad


The Catholic University of America Office of Dean of Students 353 Pryzbyla Center Washington, D.C. 20064 (202) 319-5627

Dear New Students, Welcome to the Catholic University of America! We are so excited to have you join our community. You’ve made it through high school and are now ready to start a new chapter in your life. Throughout the summer you will be receiving many items regarding your transition to college. The Cardinal Call is one of them focusing in on three distinct areas of college: academia, getting involved, and of course Orientation! Do I really have to go to class? This is a common question of many new students. The answer of course is YES! Your academics is the main purpose of attending college. You are here to receive a quality education so that you can have a successful life. In this edition of The Cardinal Call you will find advice and anecdotes from Catholic faculty, staff, and students on how to make the most of your academic experience here at the University. You will find articles about how to use the library, experiences from students who have studied abroad, what your first day of class will be like and much more! Take a few minutes and read from those who have experienced Catholic before you. You are part of the Catholic community now and we are all here to help you succeed! Take the opportunity now to make the most of your experience. Get to know the Catholic campus, start developing your study skills, get involved, make new friends, explore your interests, and have some fun! We wish you the best of luck in your academic endeavors at Catholic University!

Sincerely, Bronwen McAuliffe & Josh Monroe Student Coordinators of Orientation 2011


Starting Your Classes off Right How NOT To Fail Out of College By Christina Wolfgram Senior English Major

Keeping up with schoolwork is one of the leading causes of stress in college. Students take fewer classes than in high school and suddenly find themselves with a lot of free time on their hands. It is important, however, to keep up with class material so that projects, papers, and exams don’t sneak up on you! Here are ten tips on how to study like a college-pro:

1. Read the syllabus. Seems obvious, right? You would be surprised how many people lose their syllabi after the first day of classes, expecting their professors to remind them of upcoming assignments. It’s a good idea to keep your syllabi with your notes for each class so that you can check it whenever you open your notebook. This way, you can keep track of when assignments are due! 2. Read the material. Even if there is no written assignment involved, reading the books assigned by your professor is absolutely essential. You will understand lectures better and be a star in class discussions. Plus, professors tend to stray from their own lectures and put questions about the

4. Make a study guide. Whether your guide is elaborate or simple, re-writing the information that you are trying to remember will definitely help your brain out. Don’t waste time trying to write out all of the details. Try to write information down in a simple way that you will be able to recall later. 5. Ask for help. Professors have office hours for a reason! Plan what to ask them about before you visit, and I bet they will appreciate the time and thought that you are putting into their classes. Plus, the more you get to know your professor, the easier it will be to guess what they are looking for in papers and exams. 6. Find strength in numbers. Trade numbers with some people in your classes so that you can discuss information over texts or coffee. Organize a study session two or three days before an exam to compare study guides and review tough questions. 7. Forget the grade. Don’t focus on what grade you want. If you just focus on what you need to know, a good grade will just be the cherry on top! 8. Eat when you can, sleep when you can. It does not matter how much coffee you drink, nothing can replace a full night of sleep and three solid meals a day. Do your brain a favor and stay healthy! Higher stress does not mean a higher grade.

readings on exams. Don’t get caught reading five whole books the night before an exam; keep up with the assigned texts and you will be fine. 3. Take your time. If you know that for every hour you spend studying, twenty minutes will be spent on Facebook, then make sure you give yourself enough time to do both. Procrastination, unfortunately, is a huge part of studying, but it does not have to hold you back. Figure out your procrastination habits and account for them when you are planning to study.

9. Trust yourself. If you are confident that you know the material, do not strain yourself into an ulcer-induced coma. Review your notes a few times, but trust that brain of yours! Over-studying can sometimes be just as bad as under-studying. 10. March to the beat of your own study habits. Use this year to find what is right for you! There is no best or worst way to study. Learning about yourself is just as vital as learning information. It is more important to feel good about what you are studying and enjoy your classes!


Are you Ready for CUA? By Gurneet Bawa Senior Biology Major Starting college can be scary. It can make you feel anxious and excited. Waking up on that first day of college is like an adrenaline rush. You can’t wait to start meeting new friends, joining student organizations, and develop relationships with faculty advisors who will guide you along the path to graduation. However, you will probably be nervous too. Is my alarm set? Will I wake up after having so much fun at orientation last night? Where will I sit in class? Where will I write my homework down? Do I have a planner? How will I study for my first college exam? Will I eat lunch alone in my room? Will my roommate and I get along? These are a few of the many questions that went through my head as I made my transition from high school to college. First and foremost, this is not high school anymore. You have officially been accepted into a major university who is counting on you to be a responsible, mature adult, who upholds the mission statement of this University. You are a student of The Catholic University of America. Every college student wants to make the best of their four years: earn good grades, meet new friends, join student organizations, get jobs/interviews, have some fun and graduate from this prestigious university with honors. So, here are some pointers to start your classes off right: 1. When you arrive on campus, get settled into your residence hall. Move in all of your belongings and make your room seem comfortable. (You will be living there for the whole year.) 2. After you have made your room as comfortable as you like, meet your roommate. Do not have any expectations and do not judge your new roommate. After all, he/she is in the same position as you. 3. Explore the campus! See where your classes will be held, where you will eat your meals and the bookstore! (You will spend some time here!) 4. Be proactive! Plan to buy/rent your books from the time you arrive on campus to the first week of classes if not sooner! 5. Buy a planner if you do not already have one. Use it to write down assignments, projects, papers, student organization meetings, RA meetings in your residence halls and of course, all Orientation/Oreintation Extended Events events! 6. Attend your classes! (Research suggests that the reason students fail courses in college is mostly due to lack of attendance in classes.) 7. Always try to be ten minutes early to every class even if it is not your major or it is an 8:00 a.m. English 101 class! This shows the professor that you have a real interest in learning and are excited to be taking his/her class.

“In one week you will have done something completely new. You will have started a new class, slept in a new place, met new people. You may have joined a club or signed up for a service activity. You look to your left and your right and everyone is different. But...there is one great thing you have in common. You are a student of The Catholic University of America.”


Exploring Your Interests Looking for a Job or Internship NOW? By Anthony Chiapetta Director of Office of Career Services The Career Services Office gives direction on finding on- and off-campus jobs and internship opportunities. To learn more about: • Federal Work-Study Jobs • Non Work-Study Jobs • Internships CARDINAL CONNECTION: CUA’s exclusive online system that lists jobs and internship opportunities. To access CARDINAL CONNECTION and create your own account, visit the Career Services website at <>. Hundreds of positions are listed. Check back frequently as jobs will be added throughout the summer and academic year. • • •

Federal Work-Study: Part of your financial aid reward which makes you eligible for on-campus jobs. Non Work-Study: Available positions if you did not receive Work Study as part of your financial aid package. Non Work study jobs can either be on- or off-campus. Internships: We advise first year students to wait until spring semester to begin their internships.

However, the majority of internship deadlines occur in October or November so we encourage you to schedule an appointment with a career counselor in the fall to receive help on locating internships, and writing your resume and cover letter. Campus Empolyment Fair: Wednesday, August 31, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Pryzbyla Great Room. Representatives from offices across campus will be hiring for work-study and non-work study positions. How Career Services Can Help You in Choosing a Major! By Anthony Chiapetta, Director of Office of Career Services If you are unsure what to major in, Career Services is ready to help. There are several ways we offer assistance: From your computer: 1) Get a list of careers that are associated with a specific major: 2) Take FOCUS, an on-line career assessment: Visit the Career Services Office: 1) Take a career interest test to help you narrow down your options. 2) Talk with a career counselor to discuss what and where you need help in your decision-making process.


To Major or Not to Major By Gurneet Bawa Senior Biology Major Now that you have been accepted into CUA, you have to decide what types of courses you want to take and how you’ll complete the requirements on your Cardinal Station tracking sheet. Here are a few things to consider when picking a major: 1. Think about high school and what subjects/classes were interesting to you. 2. Find a subject that has intrinsic value to you. For example, find something that will help you grow and develop as a person, or something that will benefit you and your community. 3. And this one’s important, choose a major that you can get excited about, even if that means you have to be up at 8am (ughh!) 4. Sometimes you don’t need to choose a major right away. Here at CUA, you can choose to be an exploratory major until the end of your sophomore year. This choice gives you time to take a variety of courses in different subject areas before deciding what you want to pursue. Why not explore your options? If you are having trouble choosing a major, don’t worry. All students, regardless of major, are assigned an academic advisor to help guide them through these choices, and many college students change their majors several times during the course of their undergraduate education. Academic advisors are a great help, especially for exploratory majors who want to explore or discover different subjects before choosing a major. Advisors can help students explore their interests by suggesting courses and by providing the necessary resources to find a job or internship. The best thing about a liberal arts education is that you will be exposed to many different fields of study and you will be challenged to think in many different ways. What you engage in outside of the classroom can also have an effect. The people you meet, classes you take, and adventures you encounter during your time at CUA will all influence your academic path and your future as a student and person. As you make the transition to CUA, be aware of the resources available to you, and be sure to spend some time reflecting on your choices. Over time, and with the help of friends, family, and your advisors, you’ll set a course for success!

Meet me at the Pryz. By Colleen Flanagan Junior Media Studies Major I found my internship opportunity right in the Pryz, the hub of all things Catholic. I’m the marketing intern for Catholic Dining Services. My job is to facilitate communication between Dining and Catholic students. Whether it’s filling the napkin dispensers with ads or taking surveys in the Food Court, I’m always there behind the scenes making sure students are aware of dining opportunities. Likewise, I’m also there to hear student comments and concerns. This includes attending the once monthly Dining Services Advisory Board meetings, where students and Dining management come together for an open discussion about how to make Catholic’s Dining the best it can be. Some of my favorite memories working for Dining have to include Oscar Night at the Student Restaurant. On the night of the Oscars, we hosted a red carpet event in the Pryz. I was taking pictures of students on the red carpet while servers passed out sparkling cider. The most popular item of the evening had to be the fresh sushi, what a hit! From my experiences working with Dining, I’ve learned a lot about marketing and about Catholic students. I’ve discovered that to be heard, you must make your product and advertisements stand out among the ordinary. I’ve also learned that success means communicating with your target audience and working together to implement change. But most importantly, I found that this is something I would love to continue after college. I’ve decided to take on a Marketing minor with my Media Studies major and I hope to continue to grow in my knowledge of Catholic and marketing during my time here.


Academic Centers Catholic University Library and Information Center by Katherine Tynan, Assistant Director, Mullen Library The Catholic University of America Libraries’ staff is looking forward to meeting you in the Fall. We have so much for you to explore! There are actually many libraries on campus. The John K. Mullen of Denver Library (usually just called Mullen or “the library”) is the biggest, and serves most students on campus. There are subject specific libraries for Engineering and Architecture, Music, Nursing and Biology, and Physics. There are also special collections and reading rooms in Mullen and across campus. The University Libraries house about 1.3 million volumes. There’s an online catalog you can search to find out if we have the book you need, where it is, and if it’s checked out. We also have about 39,000 online journals, and over 100 different databases to help you find articles. We’re buying e-books! All those electronic sources are available to you in the libraries and any time you’re at a computer with internet access – on or off campus, 24/7/365. Just start from our homepage, http:// The Catholic Libraries are members of the Washington Research Libraries Consortium (WRLC), a group of eight university libraries in the DC area that share their resources. If Catholic doesn’t have the book or journal article you need, one of the other libraries may, and you can have the book delivered to Catholic or get an electronic copy of the article, usually within just a couple of days. The Libraries are great places to study, whether you’re doing research and writing a paper, reading your textbook or other assigned readings (some of which will be online), or reviewing your class notes before a test. There are areas for silent study, areas where you can talk quietly, and areas where groups can work together. There are tables and individual study carrels, and comfortable lounge chairs and sofas. There’s an area on the second floor that’s designated as the First Year Experience Reading Room, where you will find other first year students and where you can talk to Undergraduate Fellows, student advisers dedicated to serving first year students as they orient themselves to life at CUA. The Libraries have desktop computers you can use to look things up and send email, and laptops you can borrow. The Libraries have wireless network access, so you can bring in your own laptop. You can borrow a laptop lock for extra security. All of this can seem a bit intimidating, and the Mullen Library can be a little confusing at first – it has three floors in front, but six when you go into the stacks where the books are. But there are lots of people whose job is to help you find what you need in the Libraries. You can come in and ask for help. You can call. You can email. You can IM with a librarian. You can make an appointment for extended help. Your English 101 class will include instruction in doing research using the resources the Libraries provide. And there are online tours and tutorials so you can teach yourself (we’re revising them this summer to make them even better). We’re always excited for the beginning of the new school year. We know you are, too. We want to help make your time at CUA rewarding. Remember – ask us! John K. Mullen Quick Facts Hours during the school year staring August 29th Monday-Thursday: 8 am - 11:30 pm Friday: 8 am - 10:00 pm Saturday: 9 am - 10:00 pm Sunday: 11 am - 11:30 pm Mullen Library is open 24/7 during exam weeks


What does it take to be a successful college student? By Colin Pears Director of the Center for Academic Success Ok, you’ve been accepted to Catholic, you’ve signed on the line, and now you’re starting to think about everything it’s going to take to be a rockstar for the next 4 years. You might be thinking about who your new friends will be, what will it be like to live away from home and on your own, what you’ll major in, or how much work your university education will be compared to your time spent in high school. These are all important concerns, and they are all part of what it takes to be a successful college student. Let me ease your mind… you’re going to have a ton of friends, a great community, and there will always be new and exciting things to check out, so you don’t need to worry too much about that stuff. But, things like organization, time management, good study habits, motivation, and resources can be a bit more complicated, and a lot more important to pay attention to. Here’s why: by keeping organized, managing your time well, and staying on top of your coursework you’ll give yourself the time and the ability to enjoy the rest of your college experience, and when you’re doing well in your courses you’ll feel energized and excited about all the possibilities ahead of you. So now you’re asking, “ok, how do I stay balanced and do well academically, and what do I do if I start to have trouble?” Sometimes, all success takes is a bit of guidance. Start by seeking out those people who are here to help you make the most out of your time at Catholic—your advisor, your RAs, and your professors—and from there, get to know the resources that are available to you before you need help. The Center for Academic Success is the best place to start getting on track academically. We provide a variety of programs and services tailored to your needs, including: • • • • • •

Individual Tutoring Drop-in Tutoring SMARTHINKING Online Tutoring Academic Assessment Meetings Academic Skills Workshops Peer Mentoring Programs

And if that’s not enough, remember that CAS also has strong relationships with other offices and departments and we can help you navigate the university environment as you being to set a course for yourself. Whether you need help with a particular course or subject area, or you are looking for a new way to get involved on campus, The Center for Academic Success is your go-to resource! Remember, you’re here because we know you’ve got what it takes… CAS is here to help you rise to the occasion!

Center for Academic Success Quick Facts Hours during the school year starting August 29th: Monday-Friday: 9 am - 5 pm Tutoring sessions available by appointment


Academic A la Carte Center for Academic Success 204 Pryzbyla Center Need tutoring or some academic advice? The Center for Academic Success is the way to go!

School of Engineering 102 Pangborn Hall Do you love to design, create, and engineer? Visit the School of Enginnering for more infomration.

Center for Global Education 111 McMahon Hall If you are interested in studying abroad or learning about different cultures, give this office a visit! Disability Support Services 207 Pryzbyla Center If you are in need of support academically due to a disability, please contact this office. Leahy Computer Lab Leahy Hall Do you have a paper to write or research to do? Come to Catholic’s 24 hour computer lab to study! Office of Career Services 202 Pryzbyla Center Looking for a job or need help discovering your passion in life? Come to Career Services for help!

School of Music 111 Ward Hall Singing, dancing, acting? If this is your passion, visit the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music to make your aristic debut! School of Nursing 124 Gowan Hall Stop by this school if you wish to learn more about caring for others through the field of Nursing. School of Philosophy 200 Aquinas Hall “I think, therefore I am”...a philosophy major? If you wish to pursue the path of great minds like Descartes, visit the School of Philosophy! National Catholic School of Social Service 100 Shahan Hall Is your wish to serve others? Come to NCSSS to find out more!

School of Architecture and Planning 101 Crough Center If you are an architecture major or are interested in becoming one, stop by the school and learn more about the program! School of Arts and Sciences 107 McMahon Hall From Biology to Sociology, Arts and Science has it all! Contact this school if you are looking for more of a liberal arts program.

University Honors Program 112A McMahon Hall If you have been accepted into the honors program, visit this office to learn about the many ways to promote your academic achievement! First Year Experience 204 Pryzbyla Center To learn more about what the First Year Experience or get help with your FYE classes visit this office!


Study Abroad Improve your Career Prospects: Intern Abroad! By Ella A. Sweigert, Director of Education Abroad Experience, experience, experience: that is what employers are looking for. Those who complete an internship abroad gain career-related experience that will help them land a better job after graduation. Some internships involve fulltime work while others offer part-time employment; many award academic credit, either through your own institution or another school. Unfortunately, however, the vast majority of internships, as you may have heard, are unpaid. I would like to highlight three internship options we at CUA offer to Politics majors: 1) The European Parliament in Belgium, 2) The Houses of the Oireachtas (National Parliament) in Dublin, Ireland, 3) The UK Parliament (Westminster) in London. All of these options are available for a semester and the Westminster internship is also available during the summer. Students submit an online application, supply a resume and request a police clearance to be accepted. Past participants are eager to talk about their experiences with anyone who is interested. For many, the internship abroad was one of the most significant achievements of their time at CUA. Here is what our interns are saying: “Any student serious about politics, especially if they are following a ‘World’ concentration, should be dying to get involved in such a rare opportunity. CUA has one of the only exchange programs with Parliament and, as I was told on more than one occasion, it has the best. MPs who had experience with the CUA program said they preferred it because it left the focus on the internship rather than forcing too many academic commitments. “ -Greg, London Parliamentary Internship, Spring, 2011 “Lord Cormack was great to us on Tuesday and we’re all pretty excited to start our lectures with him. I also met my MP that same day and got to talk to her for about 15 minutes. The most striking thing for me, after working in Congress, is the kind of access I have to her and that I’m an actual part of the staff rather than just being the staff’s staff, if that makes sense.” -Matt, Westminster Internship, Summer, 2011 Meet our CUAbroad Intern! Christopher Prudente is a rising senior, World Politics major with Mathematics and Philosophy minors. He is interning this summer in the Center for Global Education, assisting with office activities as well as working with the Director of CUAbroad on various initiatives. Chris studied in Leuven, Belgium and interned in the European Parliament in Brussels during the fall semester of his junior year. He also traveled all around Europe during his time abroad. He hopes to continue his travels as well as gain first-hand experience in what truly goes into CUA’s various study abroad programs.


One of the most exciting things you can do in college is study abroad. With over 20 countries and 50 program locations to select from, you will find the right program whether you are interested in studying a foreign language, enrolling for a semester at foreign university, complete an international internship or a summer service learning project, we’ve got some great options for you. Visit CUAbroad on the web, drop by the office and friend us on Facebook. We look forward to meeting you!

La Vita Bella By Corin Capodilupo Senior Architecture Major

Beyond America: My Life Abroad By Glenn Kasten-Sportes Senior English Major

It’s a sunny day as I sit on the Aventine Hill reading a book, overlooking a beautiful view of St. Peter’s Dome in the distance. I think about my options for the day; should I take a walk to the Pantheon? Get a gelato at Giolitti, arguably the best ice cream shop in all of Rome? Perhaps take a day trip to Assisi, Pisa, or Siena? The possibilities seem endless, but whatever I choose, I know the day promises fun and interesting experiences that I will cherish in years to come.

Studying abroad is an opportunity that every college student should experience. Although, common concerns such as affordability, living in a new country and the transfer of credits often deter students from pursing it. I had all of those concerns and then some when I was considering studying abroad. Nevertheless, for the second semester of my junior year at Catholic I went to Paris, France and it was without a doubt one of the best experiences of my life.

As a self-admitted architecture nerd, the one thing I wanted to achieve in school was to study abroad in Rome and experience the ancient architecture the city possesses. After almost three years of hard work and academic success, I found myself in studio in Palazzo Pio, overlooking Campo de Fiori, fulfilling my dream. Although the School of Architecture provides three excellent study abroad programs to Barcelona, Rome, and Paris, the Catholic University of America provides many other opportunities to study abroad.

Paris is an absolutely wonderful city that is diverse, rich in culture and full of history. I learned so much both inside and outside of the classroom. My knowledge of the French language vastly improved, I learned a great deal about people, life in general and about myself. I also met some amazing people in my study abroad program who made my time in Paris even more magnificent. If you are strongly considering studying abroad, I recommend that you speak with your academic advisor as soon as possible so that he or she can help you plan out your courses for each semester. Try to do some research before you make any big decisions: visit the CUAbroad office, go to a Study Abroad Fair often held at Catholic and speak to various representatives there. It even helps to research outside Catholic about the country and city you wish to go to. Most importantly, speak with your parents about it. It is really important that you work with them during the application process and discuss all of your options and concerns.

There are almost twenty different countries that students can go to through Catholic affiliated programs. In addition, there are many non-Catholic affiliated programs for students wishing to study in countries unavailable through the university; the CUAbroad Office can help them get set up and approved. Programs are held in the fall, spring or even summer and offer a diverse selection of classes to fit into any major. Most study abroad experiences are geared toward second semester sophomores and juniors, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start preparing now. Look into which program might apply to your interests, make it a goal of yours, and work hard to accomplish it. To learn more about the programs Catholic has to offer, check out This is the one opportunity to not only visit but immerse yourself in a different culture and I promise that it’s worth every minute!

Studying abroad is a big step. There are numerous things to consider along with a great deal of planning, but it is all worth it. Whether you choose to go to Catholic’s Honors Program at Oxford or to India, I am positive that your time abroad will be something that you will reflect on twenty years from now and believe that it was one of the best experiences of your life. I know I will!


Quick Quiz in Academics Do you know all the academic terms at Catholic University? Match the term to the correct definition.

Academic Advisor

Also known as “GPA”, this is the grading system used at CUA

Add/Drop Period

A division of the academic year typically lasting 16 weeks

Credit Hours

Additional courses a student can take but not their main course of study


A unit given to students for completing a course


A student’s main course of study


The senior official of a college or department

Grade Point Average

A collection of a student’s grades, activities, honors, and awards received at Catholic University


A faculty or staff member unique to each student who guides them on the academic policies of CUA


The first weeks of the semester when students are allowed to add a class or drop a class from their schedule

The Orientation program facilitates the successful transition of new undergraduate students into CUA’s intellectual, social and faith based communities, promotes student learning and development, encourages independence and individual responsibility and facilitates continued student success to graduation. This is accomplished through programming that emphasizes the university’s academic and community expectations and social and developmental resources and opportunities. Through personal connections with current students, faculty and administration, new students and their families will develop an introductory understanding and appreciation of the intellectual, social and service opportunities available and gain knowledge of campus and community resources.


The Cardinal Call - June Newsletter  

The Cardinal Call - Is the offical newsletter of the Catholic University of America Orientation Program

The Cardinal Call - June Newsletter  

The Cardinal Call - Is the offical newsletter of the Catholic University of America Orientation Program